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PlatinumGames Releases Statement Supporting Bayonetta 3's Jennifer Hale

The controversy surrounding "Bayonetta 3" recently began on Oct. 5, 2022 when Nintendo confirmed rumors that Jennifer Hale replaced Hellena Taylor as the titular character for the third entry. Soon after on Oct. 15, 2022, Taylor posted a three-part video accusing Platinum Games of offering her a flat rate of $4,000 to reprise her role. 

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After she accused the studio of underpaying her and asked fans to boycott the game, Taylor said Hale "has no right to say she is the voice of Bayonetta," and has "no right to sign merchandise as Bayonetta." At the end of her third video, Taylor then said "that betrayal is hers and hers alone." The videos garnered millions of views and hundreds of thousands of interactions, but some fans believed she was unjustly directing hatred towards Hale.

Hale released a statement a few days later to remind fans of her advocacy for voice actor pay, though she was "not at liberty" to talk in more detail on the situation. To calm some of the community vitriol, on October 20, 2022, Platinum Games released an official statement in firm support of Hale as the new voice of Bayonetta and asked fans to "refrain from any further comments that would disrespect Jennifer or any other contributors to the series."

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Platinum Games' message firmly supports Jennifer Hale

In its message to fans, Platinum Games makes three statements: it offers its "sincerest appreciation" to the game's foundational community, the studio gives its "full support to Jennifer Hale," and it asks fans to stop disrespecting contributors to the series and Hale. Platinum Games did not directly reference Taylor's accusations, though the first and last statements mention "the community that has served as its foundation" and "other contributors to the series." Of course, Hellena Taylor is one of these foundational contributors.

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In an earlier interview with Game Informer, Platinum Games said Taylor was not recast due to "various overlapping circumstances," but after the original "Bayonetta" voice actor took to Twitter ten days later there was a sudden wave of support for her. But not all was as it seemed, as Bloomberg quoted sources close to the negotiations who verified the offer was not a $4,000 flat rate as Taylor claimed — it was more like a $4000-per-session rate for a minimum of five sessions, a total of closer to $15,000. 

The fan response to this news has been varied – some accused Taylor of lying about pay and misleading fans while others blamed Platinum Games for not addressing problems in the industry. The voice acting conflict with "Bayonetta 3" has gotten more complicated since it first began, and it's impossible to say who is telling the truth about what happened behind the scenes. 

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