How Shadow of the Tomb Raider makes Lara Croft more of a villain
Shadow of the Tomb Raider
Every villain is the hero of their own story, but what if the hero becomes the villain?
Shadow of the Tomb Raider will mark Lara Croft’s darkest hour yet, as she reaches her defining moment of becoming the Tomb Raider. But in the third entry in the Tomb Raider reboot, out Sept. 14, Lara will also stop at nothing to hunt Trinity and get information about her father, leading her to cross some lines — like inadvertently setting off the Mayan apocalypse.
Below, Grey’s Anatomy star Camilla Luddington, who provides the voice of Lara Croft, teases the next — but probably not last — entry in the franchise.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How much time has passed since Rise of the Tomb Raider when we meet Lara Croft again?
CAMILLA LUDDINGTON: Not very much time whatsoever. Obviously in the first game she was a naïve young girl. Even though she had lost her parents, I feel like she’s created her new family that she was feeling that support from and then she lost them to Yamatai — people like Roth, and obviously Sam didn’t die, but she still lost her in a sense. I feel like, in the second game, you see her have tunnel vision for Trinity.
In this game, she continues with that; she continues to have that tunnel vision. In this game, she is even more obsessive. It goes from her being hunted to her being the one doing the hunting. It’s interesting to me because, in this game, she kind of loses herself in the obsession. In this game, there’s a moment of rock bottom that she honestly hasn’t felt before in quite that way. I think she has to figure out a way to find herself and to ask herself again, who is she? What does she stand for? What is she fighting for? That’s kind of what we see in this game.
Does that mean she will cross some lines that she wouldn’t have in the past?
Yes. What’s super interesting to me about this specific game is that there are moments when you could see Lara almost as a villain as opposed to the hero. You could almost understand the villain in our game, understand that he could possibly be the hero. She definitely crosses lines and lines she never intended to cross. She feels like she’s lost herself. To me, it’s very interesting when you have a character who is a leader of a game and you start to question their motives. You start to question if what they’re doing or trying to succeed is, in fact, the right thing.
Was it hard for you to reconcile some of Lara’s actions while doing the voiceover?
Yeah. I always talked about how this character, out of any character, is one that I’ve been playing the longest. Whenever I jump back into a game, they take years to make. I feel like I sit with her for a long time on her journey in any of the games. In this game, there are definitely moments — I’m so attached to her I wanted more for her, or I wanted her to listen to Jonah in this moment instead of resisting, and take a second. Of course, she doesn’t. I think that, in a way, sometimes maybe you have to hit rock bottom in order to have that growth or in order to look in the mirror. As much as I hated it, it’s realistic, people make mistakes. I think she needs it in the game in order to have some sort of character growth.
Are we going to get more information on her father in this game?
Anything you can tease?
Fine! Have you played the game yet? What surprised you the most?
I haven’t played the game. I’m still actually doing the game. Once it gets locked down, then I get to sit with it. I’ve definitely seen moments. I think the ending is what surprised me the most about the game, which we shot in motion capture. It’s my favorite game by far. The ending is, I believe, very powerful. It got very personal for me. I think I can go into that more when the game is out and people understand what the ending is. I think the ending was the most intriguing part of the game for me. I’m sorry I have to be so cryptic.
Is this the end of her story?
Is it the end of her story? They’re marketing it as her becoming the Tomb Raider, basically. This is the end of that journey to becoming the Tomb Raider. But I don’t think there will ever be an end to Lara Croft’s story. But that’s an interesting question.