Lani Jean Minella (born July 28, 1950) is an American actress, director, and producer mostly working in the games industry. She is also the founder and owner of the voice-acting agency, AudioGodz.
After college, Minella started on Morning Drive radio for an alternative station in the late 1980s, but after being heard of her celebrity impersonations, she was called and referred to GTE Interactive Media to imitate voices from the movie FernGully: The Last Rainforest, which was being pitched for a LaserDisc presentation to Magnavox and Philips. She was then referred by the company to their to CD-Roms division where she worked on more voices and assisted script writing on games for children. Minella asked the company if they're others doing similar work and suggested that she should go to trade shows, which led her to attend showcases like Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Game Developers Conference in San Jose, and Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles, where she tried to set up her business card but failed to get any offers, which led her to start her own acting agency AudioGodz, a production company specializing in all aspects of voiceovers from talent to casting, directing, writing and production in 1992.
In 1996, Minella worked on a major first-person shooter video game, Duke Nukem 3D, as voice director and actress, voicing most of the female characters in the series. Lani helped cast the voice actor of Duke Nukem, Jon St. John. She met Jon when she was cast as the voice for a commercial he was producing in San Diego. After being impressed by her voices, Jon imitated the voices back at Lani and asked if he ever done voice acting for video games, she shortly got him a telephone interview with the game's creator, George Broussard, and eventually got the part as Duke.
Lani's first major voice role in a video game was for her Interactive's adventure-mystery series Nancy Drew, starring as the titular character Nancy Drew, debuting with 1998's Secrets Can Kill. Lani reprised her role as Nancy Drew in 31 other video games, with her last being Sea of Darkness in 2015, the decision was made by the CEO due to the dwindled popularity of the series and decided to find a voice actress who is local in the Seattle area, as Lani lives in San Diego.
Since starting her career and becoming well-known for her unique 4-octave vocal range, Lani has provided voices for many voices for other characters in a variety of video games, which includes the Sea Emperor Leviathan in Subnautica, Rouge the Bat in Sonic Adventure 2, Ivy Valentine from the Soulcalibur series, Lucas in the Super Smash Bros. series, various characters in The Land Before Time games, Luke in the Professor Layton series, Sindel and Sheeva in the 2011 Mortal Kombat, and Mia in Fire Emblem Heroes.
- The Queen's Corgi (2019) - Additional Voices (US Dub)
- Burn-Up Excess (1997-1998) - Additional Voices
- Geneshaft (2001) - Dolce Saito, Additional Voices
- .hack//SIGN (2002) - Additional Voices
Video Game Dubbing
- Sonic Adventure (1998) - Additional Voices
- Tail Concerto (1998) - Waffle Ryebread, Panta
- Sonic Shuffle (2000) - Void
- Sonic Adventure 2 (2001) - Rouge the Bat, Omochao
- Sonic Battle (2003) - Rouge the Bat
- Sonic Heroes (2003) - Rouge the Bat, Omochao
- Ace Combat: Infinity (2014) - Additional Voices
- Fire Emblem Heroes (2017-present) - Mia
- Soulcalibur VI (2018) - Isabella 'Ivy' Valentine