How Anime is Dubbed

As fans of anime, we have all experienced the thrill of watching our favorite shows in their original Japanese language. However, for many viewers, English dubbed anime provides a more accessible way to enjoy their beloved series. In this article, we will explore the process behind dubbing anime and how it has evolved over time.

English dubbed anime has become increasingly popular in recent years as it offers non-Japanese-speaking viewers a chance to fully immerse themselves in the story and appreciate the nuances of the characters’ emotions. Dubbed anime has its own unique challenges, including adapting the script to fit the English language, finding voice actors who can accurately convey the original performances, and syncing the dialogue with the animation. However, despite these challenges, dubbing anime remains an essential part of the industry.

Key Takeaways:

  • Anime dubbed in English has gained popularity due to its accessibility for non-Japanese-speaking audiences.
  • Challenges of dubbing anime include adapting the script and finding talented voice actors.
  • Dubbed anime remains an essential part of the industry despite its challenges.

The Evolution of Dubbed Anime

Over the years, anime has grown in popularity in the United States and other English-speaking countries. However, originally, anime was only available in Japanese, with English subtitles for non-Japanese speakers. This meant that only fluent Japanese speakers and language enthusiasts had access to these shows. As anime gained in popularity, there was a growing demand for English dubbed versions.

The first English dubbed anime that gained popularity in the United States was Astro Boy, which first aired in 1963. This dubbed version was produced by NBC and was targeted at a younger audience. In the 1980s and 1990s, anime became more mainstream in the United States, with shows like Voltron: Defender of the Universe, Robotech, and Sailor Moon gaining a following. These shows were dubbed in English and were widely available on cable television.

The Rise of Toonami

In 1997, Cartoon Network launched their Toonami block, which primarily featured anime shows. The block was a huge success, and many of the featured shows were dubbed into English, including Dragon Ball Z and Cowboy Bebop. Toonami helped to popularize dubbed anime among younger viewers, and it remains a beloved part of many people’s childhoods.

As anime became more popular in the United States, the quality of English dubbing improved as well. Voice actors became more experienced, and studios invested more resources in producing high-quality dubbed versions of popular anime series. Today, dubbed anime is widely available on streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Funimation, making it easier than ever for viewers to enjoy their favorite shows in English.

The Dubbing Process

Now that we’ve covered the reasons why anime is dubbed and its evolution over time, let’s take a closer look at the actual process of dubbing anime.

The first step in the dubbing process is script adaptation. This involves translating the original Japanese script into English while ensuring that the meaning and intent of the dialogue is accurately conveyed. The adapted script is then reviewed and revised several times to ensure accuracy and cultural sensitivity.

The next step is casting. Once the script has been adapted, voice actors are selected to dub the characters. This process involves matching the voice actor’s voice to the character’s personality, tone, and timing. Voice acting for dubbed anime is a specialized skill that requires not only acting talent but also the ability to match lip movements and convey emotions without relying on facial expressions.

After the voice actors have been cast, the recording process begins. This includes recording the dialogue, sound effects, and music in a studio. The goal is to achieve the highest quality of sound possible while staying true to the original intent of the anime.

The final step in the dubbing process is post-production. This includes editing the sound and visual effects to ensure lip-sync accuracy and adding additional sound effects and music. The goal is to create a seamless and immersive viewing experience for the audience.

Overall, the dubbing process is a complex and challenging task that requires a team of professionals working together to create a high-quality dubbed anime series. Voice acting for dubbed anime is a unique skill that requires a combination of acting talent and technical expertise. It’s important to note that the success of dubbed anime relies heavily on the effectiveness of the dubbing process.

Challenges of Dubbing Anime

Dubbing anime presents unique challenges that require an expert level of technical skill and cultural understanding. One of the biggest challenges in dubbing anime is maintaining the original intent and cultural references of the source material. Translating idiomatic expressions and cultural references requires a deep understanding of Japanese culture, which is why most dubbing experts have studied the language and culture for years. This ensures that the dubbed anime retains the essential meaning of the original and avoids cultural insensitivity.

Another major challenge faced by dubbing studios is achieving lip-sync accuracy. Dubbing requires that the audio closely matches the mouth movements of the characters on screen for a seamless viewing experience. This requires careful attention to timing and rhythm to ensure the audio matches the animation accurately. Achieving lip-sync accuracy is a time-consuming and challenging process that requires a combination of talent, technology, and artistry.

Tight production schedules are another hurdle faced by dubbing studios. Given the pressure to release dubbed versions in a timely manner, studios must work with great efficiency while also delivering the highest quality possible. This necessitates the use of advanced technology and streamlined workflows that enable dubbing studios to produce high-quality dubs efficiently.

Despite these challenges, the dubbing process has evolved significantly over the years thanks to advancements in technology. Dubbing studios now have access to cutting-edge voice recording and post-production equipment, which makes the process less labor-intensive and more precise. Online collaboration tools and remote recording capabilities also make it easier for studios to work with talent from around the world, regardless of location.

“Dubbing anime is a complex and challenging process that requires a unique combination of technical skill and cultural understanding.”

Despite these challenges, the popularity of dubbed anime continues to grow, and it remains a significant part of the anime viewing experience. Dubbed anime online sites such as Funimation, Netflix, and Hulu have made it easier than ever to enjoy high-quality dubbed anime from anywhere, making it accessible to a wider audience than ever before.

Popular Dubbed Anime

We can all agree that anime has become increasingly popular over the years thanks to its unique storytelling and captivating visuals. While some anime enthusiasts prefer to watch shows in the original Japanese with subtitles, others enjoy the convenience and ease of watching dubbed anime in English.

There are several anime series that have become popular among audiences due to their fantastic dubbed versions. One such show is the action-packed, high-intensity anime Attack on Titans, which follows the story of humanity fighting for survival against the Titans, giant humanoid creatures that devour humans without reason. Another fan-favorite is the immensely popular Naruto, which is a coming-of-age story of a young ninja, Naruto Uzumaki, as he strives to become the strongest ninja in his village.

Another anime that has gained a significant following through its dubbed version is Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, a thrilling story of two brothers who embark on a journey to find the Philosopher’s Stone to restore their bodies after a failed attempt at bringing their deceased mother back to life through alchemy. In addition to these, other popular dubbed anime series include Cowboy Bebop, Dragon Ball Z, and Death Note among many others.

Advantages of Dubbed Anime

English dubbed anime has become increasingly popular among anime fans. There are several advantages to watching dubbed anime that make it a preferred choice for many viewers.

Accessibility for Non-Japanese Speakers

The most obvious advantage of watching English dubbed anime is accessibility for non-Japanese speakers. Dubbed anime allows viewers who do not understand Japanese to fully enjoy the show without relying on subtitles. This is especially important for younger viewers who may not yet have the reading skills to keep up with subtitles.

Focus on Visuals

Another advantage of dubbed anime is the ability to focus more on the visuals. When watching subbed anime, viewers may have to divert their attention between reading subtitles and watching the action on screen. With dubbed anime, viewers can give their full attention to the visuals and not miss any important details.

Emotional Impact

Finally, watching English dubbed anime can have a stronger emotional impact on viewers. Hearing performances in one’s native language can create a stronger connection to the characters and the story, allowing viewers to fully immerse themselves in the world of the anime. Voice acting quality is crucial in this aspect, and good dubbing can heighten the emotional impact of an anime.

Although there has been a longstanding debate between subbed vs. dubbed anime, the advantages of watching English dubbed anime are clear. It provides accessibility for non-Japanese speakers, allows viewers to focus on the visuals, and can have a stronger emotional impact.

Dubbed Anime vs. Subbed Anime

When it comes to watching anime, one of the most debated topics among fans is whether to watch it dubbed or subbed. Dubbed anime refers to the version that has been translated into another language, typically English, with voice actors providing the dialogue. On the other hand, subbed anime involves watching the original version with subtitles.

Advantages of English Dubbed Anime

  • Accessibility: Dubbed anime makes it easier for non-Japanese speakers to watch and enjoy anime without having to constantly read subtitles or miss out on the visuals.
  • Focus on visuals: By not having to constantly read subtitles, viewers can focus more on the visuals and fully appreciate the animation and artistry.
  • Emotional impact: Hearing performances in one’s native language can have a greater emotional impact than reading subtitles.

Disadvantages of English Dubbed Anime

  • Cultural authenticity: Dubbed anime may lose some of its cultural authenticity in the translation process, with references to Japanese culture sometimes being lost or changed.
  • Voice acting quality: The quality of English voice acting in dubbed anime can vary, and sometimes the performances may not live up to the original Japanese voice acting.
  • Personal preferences: Ultimately, whether to watch dubbed or subbed anime comes down to personal preferences and what the viewer feels enhances their overall experience.

Despite the ongoing debate, there’s no denying that dubbed anime has played an important role in expanding the anime fanbase, making anime more accessible to a wider audience and contributing to the growth of the anime industry. Ultimately, the decision to watch dubbed or subbed anime depends on the individual’s personal preference and the specific anime series being watched.

The Impact of Dubbed Anime

Over the years, dubbed anime has had a significant impact on the entertainment industry. The production and distribution of dubbed anime have contributed to the growth of the anime market and expanded the anime fanbase. Here, we discuss the influence of dubbed anime on the localization of other media and the importance of maintaining high-quality standards.

One of the biggest impacts of dubbed anime is its role in introducing anime to new audiences. English dubs allow non-Japanese speakers to enjoy anime without relying on subtitles, making the medium more accessible to a wider audience. As a result, many popular anime series have gained a significant following through their dubbed versions, leading to increased demand for more content. This has driven the anime industry to produce more dubbed anime series, thus expanding the market.

Dubbed anime has also contributed to the localization of other media. The success of dubbed anime has encouraged other industries to consider producing localized versions of their media for international audiences. This has led to the emergence of new job opportunities for voice actors, translators, and other professionals in the localization industry.

Advantages of Dubbed Anime Disadvantages of Dubbed Anime
  • Accessibility for non-Japanese speakers
  • Ability to focus on visuals
  • Emotional impact of hearing performances in one’s native language
  • Potential for mistranslations and inaccuracies
  • Inconsistent voice acting quality
  • Loss of cultural authenticity

Despite some potential disadvantages, dubbed anime has proven to be a valuable addition to the industry. It continues to reach new audiences and attract fans, contributing to the growth of the anime market. As a result, maintaining high-quality standards in the production of dubbed anime is essential for its continued success.

If you’re looking for some recommendations on what dubbed anime to watch next, be sure to check out our dubbed anime list.

Future Trends in Dubbed Anime

As the popularity of anime continues to grow globally, so too does the demand for dubbed anime series. But what does the future hold for this niche industry? Here, we take a look at some potential trends and developments that may shape the future of dubbed anime.

Advancements in Technology

The world of animation is constantly evolving, and the same goes for the technology used to create and dub anime. With the development of new techniques and software, we can expect to see higher quality and more seamless dubs in the future. One such development is the use of artificial intelligence in the dubbing process. This technology can analyze and match the lip movements of characters, resulting in more accurate and natural-sounding dubs.

Collaborations Between International Studios

As more countries become interested in anime, we may see an increase in collaborations between Japanese studios and international studios. This could result in more diverse voice casts, as well as a blending of different cultural elements in storylines and character design.

Changes in Audience Preferences

As the anime fandom grows and changes, so do audience preferences. In recent years, there has been a shift towards watching anime online, particularly through streaming services. This has led to an increase in demand for simulcasted anime, where the dubbing process is done concurrently with the airing of new episodes in Japan. In the future, we may see more emphasis on these types of releases as opposed to traditional home video releases.

Maintaining High Standards

As the demand for dubbed anime continues to rise, it is important for those involved in the process to maintain high standards of quality. This includes keeping up with the latest technology, but also ensuring that the original intent of the anime is preserved in the dubbing process. It is essential to strike a balance between localizing the anime for non-Japanese audiences while still remaining faithful to the source material.

Overall, the future of dubbed anime looks bright, with potential for continued growth and innovation. As audience preferences and technology continue to evolve, we can expect to see more high-quality dubbed anime series, as well as increased collaboration between international studios.


In conclusion, we have explored the fascinating world of dubbed anime and the process behind creating it. From its beginnings as a necessity to its current popularity, dubbed anime has come a long way. We have delved into the challenges faced by those involved in the dubbing process, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of watching dubbed anime.

Through our analysis of some of the most popular dubbed anime series, we have seen the impact that dubbed anime has on the entertainment industry. It has not only expanded the anime fanbase but has also contributed to the growth of the anime market.

Looking to the future, we anticipate further advancements in technology and potential collaborations between international studios. These trends will undoubtedly lead to more high-quality dubbed anime series for audiences to enjoy.

We encourage readers to explore the world of dubbed anime, whether it be through popular series or lesser-known gems. With its accessibility for non-Japanese speakers and the emotional impact of hearing performances in one’s native language, dubbed anime is a unique and enriching experience.

Thank you for joining us on this journey through the world of dubbed anime.


Q: How is anime dubbed?

A: Anime is dubbed by replacing the original Japanese dialogue with dialogues in another language, typically English. This process involves translating the script, casting voice actors, recording the new dialogue, and syncing it with the animated visuals.

Q: Why is anime dubbed?

A: Anime is dubbed to make it accessible to a wider audience who may not understand the original Japanese language. Dubbing allows viewers to enjoy the anime in their native language, enhancing their understanding and enjoyment of the story.

Q: What are the challenges of dubbing anime?

A: Dubbing anime comes with challenges such as maintaining the original intent and cultural references, ensuring lip-sync accuracy, and meeting tight production schedules. Additionally, finding talented voice actors who can deliver performances that capture the essence of the characters is crucial.

Q: What are some popular dubbed anime series?

A: Some popular dubbed anime series include “Naruto,” “Attack on Titan,” “Dragon Ball Z,” “My Hero Academia,” and “One Piece.” These shows have gained a significant following through their English dubbed versions.

Q: What are the advantages of watching dubbed anime?

A: Watching dubbed anime allows non-Japanese speakers to understand and appreciate the story without relying on subtitles. It also enables viewers to focus on the visual elements of anime and experience the emotional impact of performances in their native language.

Q: How does dubbed anime compare with subbed anime?

A: Dubbed anime offers accessibility and ease of understanding for non-Japanese speakers, while subbed anime provides a more authentic experience by preserving the original dialogue. The choice between dubbed and subbed anime often comes down to personal preferences and language proficiency.

Q: What impact does dubbed anime have on the industry?

A: Dubbed anime has played a significant role in expanding the anime fanbase and reaching new audiences worldwide. It has contributed to the growth of the anime market and influenced the localization of other media, such as manga and video games.

Q: What are the future trends in dubbed anime?

A: The future of dubbed anime may see advancements in technology, such as improved lip-syncing techniques and voice acting performances. There may also be collaborations between international studios, leading to more diverse and high-quality dubbed anime series.

Larthian & Syanka

Afar Anime is a co-managed site operated by a husband and wife anime-loving team. Since an early age, they have both shared a love for all things anime. Some of their favorite titles include Naruto, Sailor Moon, and Hunter X Hunter. Post are published weekly and old articles are updated accordingly. If you are interested in collaborations, feel free to reach out at

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