David Bryan Hayter (born February 6, 1969 in Santa Monica, California) is a Canadian-American screenwriter, actor, and voice actor. He is best known for providing the English voice for Solid Snake and Naked Snake in the Metal Gear series, and for writing various screenplays, including 2000's X-Men film and co-writing the screenplay for 2003's X2. Earlier in his acting career, he played the lead role in the live-action Guyver: Dark Hero.
Though born in California, Hayter's parents were Canadian. He started acting at the age of 9. He also did some live acting in the early 1990s, but became interested in voice acting after making a cameo appearance in an episode of the sitcom Major Dad, and later landed the role of Captain America in the popular 1994 Spider-Man animated series. He also provided the voice of Arsène Lupin III in the English version of the anime film The Castle of Cagliostro.
In 1998, Hayter voiced Solid Snake in the highly successful PlayStation video game Metal Gear Solid. In early demo versions of the game and in the back of some versions of the user manual under Cast and Credits in the European version, the voice of Snake is credited to Sean Barker, which was the name of the character Hayter played in Guyver: Dark Hero. Coincidentally, Hayter shares the same name as Solid Snake, whose real name is also David.
An interview with Hayter by Game Informer in 2001 showed that Hayter wished for the then-unconfirmed Metal Gear Solid movie to be animated or made in CGI so he could provide the voice of Solid Snake. He also wished to be the screenwriter under the possible supervision of Hideo Kojima.
Hayter provided Solid Snake's voice in later Metal Gear Solid games such as Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty and Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes, the latter being a Nintendo GameCube remake of the original game. According to GameFAQs user Chris Ho's interview with Paul Eiding, Hayter gave up half of his own paycheck in order to bring back the cast of Metal Gear Solid for The Twin Snakes. This is the reason why the voice acting in that game was almost completely redone with the same voice actors, although Rob Paulsen replaces Greg Eagles as the Cyborg Ninja, despite the latter returning to voice Donald Anderson.
Hayter provided the voice of the younger Big Boss in the prequels Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops and Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker. He reprised the role of Solid Snake, now prematurely aged and given the new codename Old Snake, in Metal Gear Solid 4. Hayter also provided the voice of Solid Snake for the character's guest appearance in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. At the beginning of Metal Gear Solid 4, during the TV channel section, Hayter appears as himself and is being interviewed. At the same time, he's wearing a Solid Eye and explains about many features unavailable in-game.
Hayter is one of the few Metal Gear Solid actors to date to have actually played and beaten the Metal Gear games he's voiced in, while co-star Christopher Randolph (Otacon) has only beaten Metal Gear Solid.
Hayter had written a 324-page screenplay adaptation to the graphic novel Watchmen by Alan Moore and David Gibbons. Known for being a harsh critic of translations of his works to film (perhaps most notably the film version of V for Vendetta), Moore said of the script "David Hayter's screenplay was as close as I could imagine anyone getting to Watchmen." Unfortunately, his script was ultimately rejected, although unspecified elements of his script were integrated into the final draft, and he is given a screen credit for his writing.
Hayter is a frequent user of IMDB, and goes under the name "uberdave."
Eric Laden, in a tweet regarding his involvement in the crossover fighting game PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, mentioned working with Hayter in the game, hinting that he would have a voice acting role in the game, possibly as Solid Snake or Naked Snake. The tweet was later removed. Similarly, regarding what he thought about The Phantom Pain trailer released during the 2012 Spike Video Game Awards, Hayter claimed that it "made his arm hurt," which led to speculation as to whether or not he's involved, although he later replied that he didn't actually confirm anything.
Sometime in 2009, a year after Metal Gear Solid 4's release, Hayter made some predictions about the next Metal Gear game starring the character Raiden. This video, which also included the rest of the voice cast for Metal Gear Solid 4, was later discovered by Metal Gear Solid TV and posted.
Hayter confirmed in a tweet that he would not reprise his role of Big Boss in Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. Kojima also confirmed this and stated that his intentions for this was meant to be artistic and usher the Metal Gear series into a new direction, in spite of the fact that Akio Otsuka, Big Boss' Japanese voice actor, reprised his role. On June 6, 2013, it was revealed that Kiefer Sutherland would replace Hayter as the English voice of Big Boss.
As revealed on his latest podcast for The Codec, while working on the X-Men films, the military protocols he learned from the Metal Gear series influenced his work on the films, such as turning William Stryker, a Priest, and Reverend in the comics, into a Colonel and military scientist.
Metal Gear filmography
- Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (2010) – Naked Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (2008) – Old Snake (English version, voice) , Celebrity Moralist - Himself
- Super Smash Bros. Brawl (2008) – Solid Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops (2006) – Naked Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Ac!d² (2005) - Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence (2005) – Naked Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater (2004) – Naked Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes (2004) – Solid Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance (2002) – Solid Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (2001) – Solid Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid: VR Missions (1999) – Solid Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid: Integral (1999) – Solid Snake (English version, voice)
- Metal Gear Solid (1998) – Solid Snake (English version, voice)
- ^ Paul Semel (2006-11-22). Spy Hard (PSP). GameSpy. Retrieved on 2008-04-04.
- ^ Jeff Jensen. Watchmen: An Oral History. Entertainment Weekly.
- ^ http://www.metalgearsolidtv.com/2013/01/metal-gear-rising-revengeance-david.html
- ^ https://twitter.com/DavidBHayter/status/317002108115234816
- ^ http://www.twitlonger.com/show/n_1rjhhf9
- ^ http://www.gametrailers.com/videos/84h9k6/metal-gear-solid-v--the-phantom-pain-kojima-interview
- ^ Metal Gear Solid V Interview - IGN Video