After news of a Mob Psycho 100 voice actor quitting over a union dispute, several anime dub voice actors online shared their own stories about being underpaid. For instance, a Jujutsu Kaisen 0 voice actor revealed that she was only paid USD 150 for her role.
Her tweet was made in response to the recent discourse over low pay for voice actors in the English anime voice acting industry, specifically for non-union projects.
She also said in the tweet that she did not get any residuals or any other extra pay following the film’s US release by Crunchyroll. This is despite the film grossing over USD 30 million in the US.
She further explained how the payment doesn’t exclude taxes and agent commission, meaning her total net payment for the role is even lower.
Due to this, other voice actors and translators working in the anime industry in the West also mentioned their experiences on projects with low pay, as well as the prevalence of non-union work.
They further shared how some voice talents are still getting the same rate in 2022.
Aside from voice actors being underpaid, some translators are also said to be paid only USD 90 per anime episode, which might be considered disproportionate given the effort of translating hundreds of lines.
While she shared that some translators are getting paid USD 240 per episode, she explained that this isn’t the case for all.
Leonoudakis also shared how translators don’t get raises because of their freelance status. She also mentioned that talking publicly about payment and treatment can lead to being blacklisted by major anime distributors.
Due to the recent discourse, anime professionals and fans have started to advocate for unions in the industry.
This is because union work will guarantee that talents receive timely and proper wages, in addition to healthcare and other benefits.