BiographyGTA 5 voice artist Shawn Fonteno

GTA 5 voice artist Shawn Fonteno


Early life, family, formation

Shawn Darnell “Solo” Fonteno, American voice actor, recording artist, actor and DJ rapper, was born on April 8, 1968 in South Los Angeles, California, United States. He was raised by his father, Thomas Fonteno in Watts, Los Angeles – known for being home to mostly African Americans in Los Angeles – and attended Locke High School. Shawn joined an African American gang until he was nearly fatally shot. The traumatic experience led him to leave the gang and turn his life around. While in the gang, Shawn stole cars, was a thief, and sold drugs.

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His life as a young gang member ultimately came in handy, as Shawn is best known for voicing the notorious Franklin Clinton in the 2013 video game, “Grand Theft Auto V.”


Shawn has acted in several films throughout his career. In 1996, he appeared in “Dead Homiez”, “3 Strikes” in 2000, as Face in “The Wash” in 2001 and as Bam in “Grow House” in 2017.

At one point he was a member of Kam&Solo, a rap group associated with Ice Cube’s Lench Mob Crew.

Video games

Although Shawn is best known for voicing clever street mobster Franklin Clinton in “Grand Theft Auto V,” which grossed over $1 billion, Shawn’s voice was also heard in “Grand Theft Auto: San Francisco.” Andreas” in 2004 as an anonymous member of Grove Street Families.

His 2013 performance was mostly recorded with motion capture technology.

Shawn’s friend and “GTA V” consultant DJ Pooh asked him to be part of Rockstar’s new video game. Pooh also wrote and co-produced “GTA: San Andreas,” but he’s best known for playing Red in the movie “Friday.” Initially, Shawn helped find actors to play Franklin and helped them with their auditions, but after a few weeks he decided to take the role himself. Once he got used to the skin-tight outfits actors had to wear for motion-capture technology, Shawn quickly fell into character thanks to his background as a gang-banger and drug dealer.

When interviewed by USA Today, Shawn said: “I lived his life before…He was surrounded by drugs, crime, living with his aunt – I was living with my grandmother, so there had a lot of familiarity.”

He also told Gamecrate about the benefits of acting in gaming during their interview with him. He was like, ‘Wow, I can pretty much go through what I went through again, and not get hurt or go to jail, or be nothing at all.’ Shawn added that he has not only been shot, but has also been shot with guns, so he knows what it’s like at both ends of a gun.

In 2010, Shawn reunited with Steven Ogg and Ned Luke, and the trio spent nearly three years doing voice acting and motion capture for the game. ” in a studio.

They found the unusual process difficult initially, as the motion capture suits were uncomfortable and the sets were often not fully built or fully functional. Shawn also felt a little worried about his acting skills, as his last role was in the movie “The Wash” in 2001. Fortunately, his castmates were kind enough to help him when he asked. .

He further described the filming process in his interview with USA Today, “It’s just conditioning yourself to imagine what’s going on…close your eyes and imagine acting in a real living room.” He said he hoped his performance in “GTA V” would lead to more roles in the future, and Ned and Steven said playing in the game rekindled their love for the art.

Shawn Fonteno

Luckily, all their hard work paid off as the game grossed $1 billion in its first three days, and the trio could barely speak in public without their voices being recognized. In 2014, the cast of “GTA V” was nominated for Best Vocal Ensemble in a Video Game at the Behind the Voice Actors Awards.

In 2020, Shawn posted a video on social media, in which he pleaded for GTA fans to be patient with the eventual release of “Grand Theft Auto VI” from Rockstar Games. He explained that the process is very long and complicated, especially since it will likely be a multiplayer game. In the video, he asked them not to “knock down Rockstar, man.”

He also said that the development of “GTA V” took more than four years – longer than most fans would have imagined, “You all have to understand, it’s a process to release these games.” Although Rockstar hasn’t officially announced “GTA VI”, “GTA V” was launched in 2013, and fans are eagerly awaiting the sequel.

Thanks to fan enthusiasm, there’s a lot of online hype and conspiracies about “GTA VI.” Most leaks of the game suggest it’s set in Vice City – a location that hasn’t been in the franchise for almost 20 years. Following Lazlow Jones’ announcement of his departure from Rockstar, the future of his radio DJ persona is currently unknown.

In 2018, Rockstar released what became another huge hit, “Red Dead Redemption 2”. They haven’t released another game since and have yet to confirm release dates for any upcoming games. However, there are several rumors that a ‘Red Dead Redemption’ sequel could be released in 2021 or 2022.

Rockstar is currently planning to release a next-gen version of “GTA Online” and “GTA V” as the games are still popular, so with those releases in the works, a sequel likely isn’t production’s first priority. Still, hopefully Shawn’s explainer video was enough to calm GTA fans’ impatience as Rockstar works on the long and complicated task of finishing the sequel.

Additionally, Shawn’s video hopefully also convinced fans that the Rockstar team isn’t dealing with “GTA” and is actually listening to their requests and doing their best to make them come true.

Private life

Shawn is married – her name is unknown, and the wedding date probably around 1990 – and the couple have a daughter together named Bria. His wife encouraged him to leave the gang and lead a better life. He also has another daughter, Brittney, who is a baker – it is not known if his wife is also Brittney’s mother. Shawn helps Brittney open her own bakery, and she’s cooked and served big names before.

Exclusive: Shawn Fonteno, voice and image of Franklin Clinton in GTA V, interviews The Source…

Posted by La Source Magazine on Sunday October 13th, 2013

Shawn had a public business feud with Ice Cube, portraying the fight in “Beef 2”, a documentary. Shawn said he knocked out Ice Cube and stole his channel after he had a business disagreement. The fight allegedly took place at a red light, and Ice Cube was the one who started it. In the documentary, Shawn said that after knocking Ice Cube out, he woke him up again and “sinked” him. With a smirk, he added, “Somehow his chain fell into my hand… then all of a sudden his Rolex started to jump and come into my hand. I don’t know how it happened.

The feud was colossal news in the 90s and part of an even bigger feud between Ice Cube and Cypress Hill. Ice Cube allegedly stole a hook from one of Cypress Hill’s songs and made it his own single. At the time, Shawn (then better known as Solo) was close friends with Cypress Hill.

He later apologized for the feud in a YouTube video titled “GTA V Shawn ‘Solo’ Fonteno Full Interview”, when his daughter, Bria, interviewed him on her channel, Fonteno Media. He also added that in the future he would like to work with Ice Cube.

Hobbies, favorite things and interesting facts about Shawn

  • In his free time, he enjoys customizing and racing Harley Davidson motorcycles.
  • He has a little dog that he loves very much and loves very much.
  • He sells his own merchandise online.
  • Her role models growing up were her grandfather, grandmother, and uncles.
  • His cousin is American rapper Young Maylay, the voice actor for protagonist Carl “CJ” Johnson in “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.”


Shawn is 1.83m (6ft) tall and weighs approximately 88kg (195lbs).

Net Worth and Salary

Shawn’s net worth is estimated at $1 million at the end of 2020.

Eric Patrick
Eric Patrick
Eric Patrick is currently a freelancer who writes for several magazines and is an economy and finance correspondent at The Nuherald. He has been working in this field for around ten years and has gained immense popularity during that time. He received a Master's degree in philosophy. During his working career, he gained much popularity as a writer resulting in receiving many great honors and awards. He has written for a wide range of leading media outlets on various entertainment topics.


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