Ella Purnell shares her experience voicing Jinx in Arcane

We recently got to talk with Ella Purnell, the voice of Jinx in Arcane, and she shared her experience voicing the iconic LoL champion.

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Jinx is easily one of the most popular champions from League of Legends (you can even argue that she’s the most popular), so it’s not surprising that she’s one of the central characters of Arcane, the new League animated series on Netflix.

Taking on the role of Jinx in Arcane is Ella Purnell, an English actress who you may know as Kate Ward from Army of the Dead, or Emma Bloom from Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. While Purnell already had quite a resume prior to Arcane, her role as Jinx is one of her first major voice acting roles.

Recently, we got a chance to talk with Purnell, and she was able to share with us her experience voicing one of League’s most iconic champions. Though she did reveal that prior to Arcane, she was only slightly familiar with League of Legends:

I knew what [League of Legends] was, but I hadn’t played it. But my brothers used to play. People used to talk about it in school. It was a was huge, and it still is, but I hadn’t had any experience playing it then.”

As she hasn’t played League before getting the role of Jinx, what Purnell did was research about the blue-haired, bomb-loving champion. Thankfully, there are lots of stories and resources online.

“When I found out I’d got the role, I did a lot of research,” said Purnell. “There are tons of stuff about Jinx online, so I got really involved, and got very intimidated and excited at the same time. And now here we are.

If you’ve read about Jinx’s lore (there’s a lot of it in the Universe of League of Legends site), you probably already know that she’s one of Runeterra’s most colorful and craziest characters. Though in Arcane, we finally get a glimpse of what Jinx was like before she want mad — when she was still called Powder.

Powder transforming into Jinx is the hook for me,” said Purnell. “She’s not just crazy because she’s heartless and mentally ill. While that could be definitely part of it, she has severe trauma and she has loved and she’s lost, and she’s gone through things that no kid should go through. There are good things about her too that we learn to love, like she’s funny, she’s sensitive. she’s a scientist, she’s creative, and I think yeah, she’s crazy too. We’re definitely going to explore that more as the season goes on. From episode one to the last episode is huge jump and it’s a really exciting transformation.

As Arcane shows Jinx’s origins, we get to see her younger, more vulnerable (and more normal) self. Of course, as the series’ story progresses, we are able to see how she developed into the Jinx that we know (and maybe love?) in the game.

When asked about how she was able to voice Jinx’s two sides in the series, Purnell said:

“We have to give her somewhere to go. The game is the baseline, that’s what we’re building from, and I think what people will respond to is that we’re putting out the relationships, the emotions, the character transformations that are happening is the thing that is going to pull on people’s heartstrings, and is the thing that people are going to love and keep coming back to the show for.”

Seeing Jinx’s complexity in Arcane is quite a treat for long-time League of Legends fans. But it’s not just viewers that will enjoy seeing Jinx’s different sides, even Purnell remarked that playing her was an great experience.

“My favorite thing about being an Arcane is variety of playing Jinx,” said Purnell. “Just how different it is every single time [when I played her].”

The first three episodes of Arcane are now streaming on Netflix. Episodes 4-6 and 7-9 will release on November 13 and 20, respectively.