Akira Kamiya Talks Turkey About the Business of Voice Acting

On a recent episode of the TV Tokyo talk show Jikkuri Kiitarou ~ Star Kinkyou (Hi) Houkoku, veteran voice actor Akira Kamiya (Kenshiro in Fist of the North Star, Kinnikuman in Kinnikuman / Ultimate Muscle, Ryo Saeba in City Hunter) spilled the beans about his experience earning a living as a seiyuu.

Specifically, the 70 year old Kamiya related his experiences working on the original Kinnikuman TV anime. Back in 1983, Kamiya said, voice acting operated under a graduated pay scale system so that less experienced actors started off with smaller wage rates that increased over time. When he first took the leading role as the titular character in Kinnikuman, Kamiya earned only 3000 yen per episode! That was only about $12.46 US, according to the 1983 yen-to-dollars exchange rate.

Gradually, Kamiya’s wages increased to 37,000 yen per episode ($153.66 US in 1983), although Kamiya admitted that he admired today’s system, where rookie voice actors can expect to start at 15,000 yen ($128.25 US) per episode.

Kamiya also revealed where the real money for experienced voice actors can be found: pachinko machines. For his voice work for pachinko machines, Kamiya revealed that he usual makes at least 500,000 yen ($4725.15 US) per job, and that obtaining a commission of a cool million yen ($8550.30 US) for such work would not be out of reach.

Source: Yahoo! News Japan via Otakomu

Paul Chapman is the host of The Greatest Movie EVER! Podcast and GME! Anime Fun Time.

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Akira Kamiya Talks Turkey About the Business of Voice Acting by Elspeth Chagall is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International

Elspeth Chagall

A biologist by education, Elspeth has always possessed an artist's soul. Her time is mostly spent learning all the tricks of the content marketing trade. Not only that, when she's not learning, she works tirelessly as web admin for her self-hosted blog network of Wordpress sites and manages all the editorial duties of all the sites she's developed. She's often said that ideas for new sites keep coming to her. She was an affiliate marketer for a number of years but had to drop that title so she could spend more time working on her own projects. When she's not busy growing her blog empire, she's working on her published writing endeavors. She resides in the Philadelphia Metro area with her partner. In her spare time, she's an avid anime and manga fan, a lover of M/M romance as she both reads and writes stories, a techno-geek, card-carrying member of the Cult of Mac/Apple, book worm and movie buff. It's safe to say, that she doesn't get out much.