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How Haikyuu!!'s English Dub Cast Americanized The Script To Make It Their Own

Many anime fans hold a strong preference when it comes to watching their films and shows dubbed in English versus watching with subtitles and the original Japanese audio. For the performing voice actors, being creative with translated dialogue and effects is hard work. Bryson Baugus, who voices Hinata on the "Haikyuu!!" series' Sentai Filmworks English dub, said in an interview, "I try my hardest to use my experiences to figure out what will match the action that's happening right here" (via The Geekiary).

The premise of "Haikyuu!!" — a diminutive young athlete whose ambition is to be a great volleyball player — has proven popular enough to spawn a best-selling manga series and anime show (via iTech Post). With so many fans, repeat viewers, and cosplayers of the franchise, the cast knew the pressure was on to get "Haikyuu" right for a fresh, English-speaking audience.

Here's what the "Haikyuu!!" cast did to make the dub feel distinct from the original story. 

They blended American humor into the dialogue

Kyle Colby Jones's approach to directing the English dub of "Haikyuu!!," was that "the source material, of course, is the god, and we want it to live and breathe as close as we can to it" (via The Geekiary). Still, that didn't mean slavishly imitating the original text with no changes or updates for English-speaking audiences.

Jones wanted room for himself and the other cast members to engage with the script and improvise or try different things during the voice recording. The director also "[was] trying to take jokes and make them play a little more Americanized." However, that didn't mean iconic lines were thrown out either. Jones reassured fans, "Don't worry, we didn't take away 'nice receive' and things like that" (via The Geekiary).

The cast seems to have enjoyed making the series, with Scott Gibbs commenting on how proud everyone was of the dub. But the biggest effect "Haikyuu!!" had on them? The actors all want to play the central game, with Jones commenting, "I've never wanted to play volleyball so bad in my life!" Understandable when a show is as obsessed with the sport as "Haikyuu!!" is!