A staff member at an anime production company recently described the difficulties that young voice actors in Japan have entering an industry that experienced voice actors dominate. The topic has gained some buzz online, but it may be difficult to get an accurate picture of the state of the voice acting industry when discussions tend to become one-sided.
TV Asahi‘s Aruaru Bansankai variety program featured both “veteran” and “young” voice actors on its episode that debuted on June 17. It seems that the intention of the program was to create a showdown between seasoned and new voice actors. Net commenters who viewed the program noted how it pitted veterans against their younger counterparts.
Veteran voice actor Akira Kamiya (Kinnikuman‘s Kinnikuman, Detective Conan‘s Kogoro Mouri, City Hunter‘s Ryo Saeba) said on the program, “A new wind is blowing. Drama is becoming form. I’m fed up with form-only drama.” Yuji Mitsuya (Touch‘s Tatsuya Uesugi, Anpanman‘s Katsudonman, Saint Seiya‘s Virgo Shaka) said, “The voice is the same for everyone, and there is no personality… With a quiet voice, the voice is the same even if the role changes.”
The young voice actors on the program seemed reluctant to stand up to their