Assassin’s Creed Unity voice actor Dan Jeannotte, who lends his voice to the title’s protagonist, Arno Dorian, has fielded over a dozen questions on Twitter. Jeannotte provided answers to many interesting questions and revealed various details about the character he’s set to portray.
Jeannotte described Arno as a “smart, witty guy” who “doesn’t let anyone push him around.” The opposite of a brooding anti-hero, and described as “epic”, Arno’s best trait is wanting to better himself.
Like all good characters, Arno evolves through the story. Jeannotte says Arno starts off as brash and irresponsible, but through tragedy, he’s forced to grow up and fight for what is right.
As for his character? “He's very sharp and sarcastic, which sets him apart. He's a very independent and a critical thinker, questioning the motives and methods of authority,” says Jeannotte.
Here’s the Q&A in full (via reddit):
Q: What do you think people will like most about Arno?
A: I think they'll really enjoy his attitude. He's a smart, witty guy and he doesn't let anyone push him around.
Q: In your opinion, what is Arno's best trait? Is he an epic assassin? 🙂
A: He's definitely epic and he goes through an epic journey. His best trait is his desire to better himself.
Q: What is the best part of being asked to be apart of such a successful franchise?
A: It's a huge honor to be asked to take on the role of an Assassin. The performance capture process is like playing in an action movie!
Q: How have you managed to separate Arno from previous assassins in the series & give him his own, unique "flavor"?
A: He's very sharp and sarcastic, which sets him apart. He's a very independent and a critical thinker, questioning the motives and methods of authority.
Q: how much do you see yourself like Arno?
A: We definitely share similarities. We're both reluctant heroes, haha! We use humor as a weapon. And we're troublemakers.
Q: What type of character is Arno and how does he change through out the story?
A: He starts brash and irresponsible. Through tragedy, he's forced to grow up and fight for what is right.
Q: What did you first think when the AC franchise asked you to narrate the main character in their new game?
A: I was super excited. It's intimidating to take on an iconic role, but I knew it was gonna be so much fun and it was!
Q: Can we actually decapitate people in actual gameplay?
A: The marketing guys are telling me "no, no it is not possible." Also… I'm gonna watch out for you.
Q: What characteristics do you believe will make us fall in love with Arno?
A: He's got a big heart even though he covers it up with bravado and witt. Also, he's driven.
Q: were you interested in learning any of the parkour yourself?
A: Oh yeah! Absolutely! That's a bit of a fantasy of mine, to be able to do parkour… and breakdancing.
Q: was it difficult to portray Arno? If so, how?
A: He goes through a big personality change through the story, which is a challenge, but what an actor lives for.
Q: without giving too much away, want is your favourite quote from Arno?
A: "And how long were you standing in the dark, waiting for me?"
Q: Did u have a good knowledge of French before being cast or were you taught some after casting?
A: I'm actually half French-Canadian, so I've been speaking French since I was a baby!
Q: is this is your first time working with ubisoft … If its … Would u work with them again … And Grazie mille
A: I did some voicework on AC3 and AC4. Working on #ACUnity has been one of the best experiences of my life, so hopefully @Ubisoft will have me back.:)
Q: How fun/awkward was it to record Arno's non-word vocal expressions like grunts and the like for gameplay?
A: It was a lot of fun. Also, a surreal day of grunts and death rattles. I had weird dreams that night.
Q: What is something Arno can do that you wish you could do?
A: Leap off rooftops. And liberate his country from tyranny and change the course of history.
Q: Is there a romantic side in the story of Arno? Or will it mainly focus on the revolution and the Assassins?
A: Without giving too much away, there is a complicated love story within the game. So, Arno is fighting for love as well as justice. #AskACArno
Q: if you had the chance, would you go back in time, just to be Arno?
A: The French Revolution was an incredibly dangerous time, but I would go back just to be part of such a pivotal time.
Q: What is Arno's full name?
A: Arno Victor Dorian
Q: DOES ARNO LIKE PINEAPPLES?
A: Arno's too busy killing Templars to eat.
Q: what would be Arno's spirit animal?
A: Arno's spirit animal would be Dan Jeannotte, and Dan Jeannotte's spirit animal is the eagle.
Q: have you been face-model (or what it's called) for Arno or only voice-actor?
A: I did full performance capture for Arno, so his movements, facial expressions and his voice come from me.
Q: The game title's "unity". What do u think of it? Does it reveal some kind of message in the game in some ways?:)
A: Yes, it's about Arno uniting with the Brotherhood and the people of France to fight together against oppressors.
Q: Have you been able to make any input on Arno's character? I remember how Edward wasn't originally Welsh until the VA changed it.
A: I had a great script to work with, but I got the chance to bring my own sense of humor and vulnerability to the part.
Q: Each assassin has been driven by something. What do you think drives Arno that separates him from the others?
A: He needs to redeem himself and atone for what he percieves are his past failures.
Q: do you, personally, have ancestors who were involved in the French Revolution?
A: My French ancestor was actually one of the first settlers to come to Quebec in 1604, so we skipped it.
Q: Where do you think Arno would best enjoy having his holidays after exterminating hordes of templars
A: Probably a beach in Nassau or maybe Havana…
Q: Being the actor for Arno and even being full body captured, is it weird to know that it's you in the game?
A: It's definitely weird to know that I am the player's character. It's like I'm a voodoo doll for a million AC fans.
Q: what was the most fun weapon to use when mo-capping as Arno
A: Definitely the Hidden Blade. It's the classic Assassin weapon and as an actor, it's fun to play with.