Jujutsu Kaisen Actor Criticizes Anime Dubbing Conditions and Pay Rates

Following a report about the low wages voice actors receive, Kaiji Tang, the English voice of Satoru Gojo, details the problems within the industry.

jujutsu kaisen actor Kaiji Tang is publicly discussing his issues with the anime dubbing industry.

The actor opened up about the problems within the industry following the publication of a report on Anime News Network alleging that voice actors were being underpaid for their performances in the English dubs of anime series and movies. According to the report, the actors who appeared in Jujutsu Kaisen 0, which recently premiered in North America and was projected to earn over $19 million in its opening weekend, were paid between $150 – $600 USD in total for starring in the movie. Tang, who plays the role of the sorcerer Satoru Gojo, initially responded to the report on social media by tweeting out a joke about how he warns people that they won’t be able to make a living doing anime voice acting, but followed up that statement with a few more serious statements about the industry’s low wages and practices.

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Despite playing one of the most popular characters in one of the biggest anime series in the world, the actor revealed that he is only able to make a living by taking on other voice acting work outside of the anime industry, including doing 12-20 hours of audio descriptive work per week, in addition to providing voice overs for audio books and educational programs. Tang also discussed how voice actors for English dubs are frequently given little to no prep time for their roles, and will often have to perform “cold reads,” which means they are recording lines for the final dub just as they are reading the script for the first time.

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Several other prominent voice actors, including Stephanie Sheh, who starred in English dub of FLCL and the VIZ dub of sailor Moon, have pushed for the anime industry to adopt union dubbing. While some distributors, such as GKIDS and Netflix, use some union dubbing, the majority of the English voice acting industry is non-union. “Employers are conditioned to believe that any actor who asks for too much can easily be replaced with someone else,” Kyle McCarley told Anime News Network. “But when we have the support of all our peers, we can stand firm on certain minimum requirements without fear of being replaced,” the actor said. McCarley plays the lead role in the English dub of Mob Psycho 100.

Jujutsu Kaisen 0 is currently in theaters. The first season of the anime is available for streaming on Crunchyroll, while the original manga by Gege Akutami is available in English from VIZ Media.

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Source: Twitter (1, two, 3), Anime News Network

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