I have a very special treat for everyone. Here is an exclusive interview I conducted with Kyle Hebert, who is the English voice of Ryūji Suguro.
ihathann: How did you get into voice acting?
Kyle Hebert: Most actors come from a theatre background, but I actually came from radio. I was always too shy to get on stage and had trouble memorizing dialog. I wanted to do two things since I was a kid: do animation voices and be on the radio as DJ. Ended up getting a degree in broadcasting, landed an internship at a radio network in Dallas, where I stayed for over a decade. Partway through that radio career (DJ, writer/producer, character voice for Radio Disney), I was told about open auditions for Dragonball Z at Funimation. This was back in summer of 2000. Landed some bit parts and eventually the role of teen Gohan and the Narrator. That led to other shows. Took my resume with me to LA in late 2005, when I left my radio job and decided to pursue voice acting full time. Los Angeles is where the bulk of character VO work is. Been here ever since.
ihathann: How did you get cast in Blue Exorcist, and were you aware of the popularity of the series?
Kyle Hebert: I've been a voice talent called in on numerous projects at Bang Zoom studios since I first moved to LA. I was called in to audition and landed the role of "Bon" Suguro. I did actually know the show had tremendous buzz from the previous year. The subtitled version was all the rage on Crunchyroll's website.
ihathann: For those who may be unfamiliar with the process, generally what is the average voice over session like?
Kyle Hebert: For anime dubs, each actor comes in individually. There's no prep time or rehearsal. We show up, the director tells us what's going on in the episode and specific scene. We preview each line of dialog in Japanese to see the lip sync, glance down at the script, and hear the tone or how loud/soft the delivery needs to be. There's 3 beeps, and on the 4th imaginary beep, that's where we say our line of dialog. We tend to record a DVD's worth of episodes at a time. Sessions can last a few minutes up to 4 hours (if longer, it's broken up over multiple days), depending on how much each character has to say.
ihathann: Have you started working on the dubbing of Ryūji Suguro in the Blue Exorcist anime yet?
Kyle Hebert: Started a couple months ago on the "Blue Exorcist" dub and am proud to announce that it will debut very soon on Viz's new streaming service, Neon Alley, which is exclusively on PS3. Haven't heard any street dates for the actual dvd or blu ray yet.
ihathann: Have you ever had "interesting" run-ins with fans and would you like to share one of those stories?
Kyle Hebert: I've been blessed by the fans in the twelve years I've been in the industry. I've gotten tons of gifts, fan art, and made many wonderful friends at conventions and online through social media. I will say, while the cosplays are always interesting to see, the smells aren't always pleasant, hahaha.
ihathann: Do you have anything new (Besides Blue Exorcist) coming out that you would like to promote?
Kyle Hebert: I recorded a quick cameo as Ryu from Street Fighter for Disney's upcoming "Wreck-it Ralph", in theaters on November 2. So psyched to see the movie to begin with, but especially excited to have gotten to be on a Disney movie (even if only for a few seconds). If fans are curious about going through some mock VO auditions and get their voice acting skills critiqued, I offer one on one Skype sessions. More details are on my website at www.kylehebert.com!
ihathann: If fans what to see what you are working on, how can they stay in the loop?
Kyle Hebert: I'm the most interactive voice actor out there. My website is www.kylehebert.com. You can follow me on Twitter: @kylehebert. Also Facebook.com/KyleHebertVO. Or drop me a line: firstname.lastname@example.org.
A big thanks to Kyle Hebert for taking the time to do this interview.
01:18, September 18, 2012 (UTC)