Why it’s so hard to sell as a voice actor

Why it's so hard to sell as a voice actor Anime

It is difficult to debut as a voice actor

It is a matter of course, but the process of becoming a voice actor is difficult. Many people think that becoming a voice actor means going to a vocational school after graduating from high school, then joining an agency, and so on.

However, just because you enter a vocational school does not necessarily mean that you will get into a voice acting agency, and just because you enter a voice acting agency does not necessarily mean you will get a job. There are many ways to become a voice actor.

Nowadays, voice acting ranks high on the list of jobs that people want to become.

To make your debut as a voice actor, of course you need to have some ability, but you also absolutely need luck, good timing, and a good relationship with people. It is not a world where you can be hired just because you are a good actor.

It is also important to find out if you fit what the production company is looking for, and if the voice actor agency is the right fit for you. There are thousands of people who want to become a voice actor at training schools. There are many such training schools in Tokyo alone. But only about 50 people will make their debut as a voice actor. It is such a narrow gate.

It is difficult for newcomers to make a living

Even if you pass through the narrow gate and become a voice actor, it is very difficult to make a living as a new voice actor.

Even if you can call yourself a new voice actor, there may be months when you have no work at all. Most new voice actors make a living by working part-time jobs in parallel with their voice acting work. It is very difficult to make a schedule, and if you don’t have a part-time job, you won’t be able to make ends meet. It is really tough to endure this period. When you are a newcomer, you are probably working while belonging to an office.

Even if you do 15,000 yen per job, your take-home pay will probably be 8,000 to 10,000 yen.

It is difficult to keep getting work

In many cases, voice actors, even new voice actors who are just starting to make a name for them, go to auditions and get work. It is mentally difficult because you have to work and also go through a lot of auditions at the same time, and if you don’t pass the auditions, you feel as if you are going to be out of business. You always have to fight against the feeling of “I may not be able to perform in any productions in the next season. If you don’t get a chance to perform, it means that you will lose your salary. And since casting has a lot to do with relationships, there are a lot of opportunities to get to know people. It is not enough to just work hard and polish your performance every day.

And after three years of such a life, after debuting as a new voice actor, it becomes even more difficult to continue working because of the rank increase in pay. Many voice actors were able to get work because they were paid a low fee, but as soon as their rank is raised and their fee goes up, their work suddenly disappears. That is why it is said that in the voice acting industry, the first three years of a newcomer’s career are critical.

Too many rivals

Another point that makes it difficult to continue as a voice actor is that there are too many rivals. You are entering a field where there are already senior voice actors active in the industry. I believe that not only do you have to work in the same workplace as the voice actors you admired, but ultimately you have to win over these people. This means that not only do I have to stand in the same field as the senior actors, but I also have to become a voice actor who will be chosen by them. Furthermore, from there, new rivals will continue to increase. New voice actors of a newer generation than me are constantly emerging.

You have to keep up with them and keep fighting. You have to keep working hard to survive as a voice actor.