Veteran seiyuu Kotono Mitsuishi, known for scores of top roles including Misato, Boa Hancock and Excel, has spoken out against the anime industry’s harsh treatment of seiyuu, saying it has forced them into penury and discards as soon as they become experienced rather than pay them more, causing a dearth of skilled seiyuu as a result.
Her comments were made in a recent interview given to a careers website:
Actually, at the moment conditions in the industry are very harsh.
Production budgets are low, so the only seiyuu who get used are young, cheap ones, and the more experienced ones don’t get called upon at all.
In short, there are no “experts” in place. There aren’t the kind of opportunities I had to experience moving performances by senior seiyuu. As a result, new seiyuu can’t grow.
Even young seiyuu who do manage to improve find themselves no longer called upon as soon as their fee rises a little.
You can’t make a living on such low wages, it’s a vicious circle.
Of 100 classmates, only 1 or 2, if that, are able to make a living doing seiyuu work alone. But even so many keep doing it as part time work. It’s their life and they want to fulfil their dreams.
That seiyuu are paid a pittance is common knowledge, but up to now it seems to have been assumed this has no impact on their actual performing ability…