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Bill’s Voice Actor, Jim French, Is Back And Recording At Valve

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Bill’s Voice Actor, Jim French, Is Back And Recording At Valve

You might know the one and only Jim French as the radio personality behind approximately 627 radio shows that have been aired all over the United States. But you probably know him as the voice of Gunman Chronicles’ Xenome researchers, as the voice of Father Grigori, as the voice of the Fisherman of the Lost Coast… or as the voice of Bill Overbeck, the tough Vietnam veteran from Left 4 Dead. While he didn’t get to do any voice work for L4D1’s first DLC, Crash Course (apparently he was on vacation during Valve’s recording time), he did return for The Sacrifice, where he delivered the greatest line the Valve continuum has ever known.

Well, it turns out that Jim French is back, doing some sort of voice work at Valve HQ in Bellevue, Washington. Mysterious! Since the news was brought to us through the official Left 4 Dead Twitter, I’m going to assume he was doing voice work for Left 4 Dead – although what exactly he might be recording for remains unknown. Perhaps it’s retroactive voice work for the L4D1 campaigns set to be added to L4D2 through the Cold Stream DLC release, or perhaps it’s going to be voice work for the L4D-PAYDAY crossover that was announced last month. Hopefully we’ll find out soon enough!

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  1. Why does he sound so much like Cave Johnson?

    • No idea. Although I do think John Patrick Lowrie, another one of Valve’s foremost voice cast regulars, could have done an exceptional Cave Johnson – he sounds a bit like J.K. Simmons… but not quite as J.K. Simmons-y. Which is good, if you ask me.

      • I think I know what you’re talking about, but in that case I’d prefer Simmons because of that tang in his accent.

        • Oh, sure – I can hear that too, and I do prefer that as well. The main problem is that when I was playing Portal 2, I wasn’t really hearing Cave Johnson, I was just hearing J.K. Simmons. Same goes for his part in C&C: Red Alert 3. He’s a great actor, but he’s not very flexible, so to speak. Lowrie, however, is extremely flexible and versatile.

  2. it must be for hl3 they must be finishing it adding voices

  3. Didn’t he also play Father Grigory?

  4. hmmmmmmm, wasnt bill’s voice from the one who also did Breen’s voice?

    • Breen’s voice was done by the wonderful Robert Culp, who sadly passed away in 2010 due to a heart attack.

      • Robert Culp had no other parts in any other Valve games. Although it was possible that he was to return in some capacity as Breen for Episode Three, since Doug Lombardi was oddly evasive regarding Breen’s status in an Orange Box interview.

      • I knew Robert Culp died. And thats why i question that XD
        I mean, as far as i know, they killed Bill in honor to Robert Culp
        So i guess i was wrong :/

  5. Great news! such a shame Bill Died.

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