You may know her as the voice of Seras Victoria (Hellsing), Riza Hawkeye (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood), Chun-Li (Street Fighter), and Lotte Yanson (Little Witch Academia).
Best known for playing the fierce and strong-willed Rukia Kuchiki (Bleach), Ctrl+GeekPod recently sat down with voice actress FUMIKO ORIKASA at SMASH! Sydney Manga and Anime Show 2019 to discuss about her career and voice-acting challenges. Check out our interview below!
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CtrlGeekPod: You’re best known as Rukia Kuchiki from Bleach. What do you like most about the story of Bleach?
Orikasa: To summarise Bleach in one word — I like the ‘bond’ between the characters.
CtrlGeekPod: Rukia is such a strong leading character. What other qualities do you like about her character?
Orikasa: I like how Rukia is strong-centred. She knows what she wants and she works very hard towards her goals.
CtrlGeekPod: Why do think the story of Bleach still has hype after all these years?
Orikasa: Since the story of Bleach is interesting, the story is still loved by many people. It is also because of a recent gaming application that has been released for the story.
Thanks to the game, the storylines that didn’t make it in the anime allowed the storylines to continue in the game. And since the game expanded into the global market, Bleach continues to be enjoyed by fans around the world.
CtrlGeekPod: You’ve been in the industry for a few decades now. As a voice actress, how has the anime industry and its fans changed over the years?
Orikasa: It is interesting to see how the medium has changed. The original medium for anime used to be a cassette tape, and then it transformed into DVD, and then into Blu-Ray. Now, anime is streamed online, and as a result, it allows more people to enjoy anime.
CtrlGeekPod: What kind of anime character do you personally like to voice?
Orikasa: This is a very difficult question. I have done many characters over the course of my career so I can’t pinpoint my most favourite. However, I would like to try out for cute little animals or mascot characters in the near future.
CtrlGeekPod: When working on an anime, what kind of scenes are the hardest to do on the spot? How do you approach these particular scenes?
Orikasa: When I receive the script, sometimes it is very hard to get into character for such scenes. When I am inside the booth, I’m with other voice actors and I’m forced to put myself into that particular scene.
CtrlGeekPod: You’ve done a lot of voice-acting work across film, anime, and games. What are some major differences when you’re doing voice-acting for anime versus voice-acting for video games?
Orikasa: With animation, I usually receive the script first and there are people around me in the studio. There is usually just the one script with a story from A to B.
With games, there may be choices in the story where the character needs to make a decision. I have to do recordings for those decision scenes as well. With that in mind, I have to make sure that these two decisions somehow come back to the one scenario down the track. And for me, this is quite interesting and challenging.
CtrlGeekPod: We must ask — do you personally prefer Ichigo with Rukia and Inoue?
Orikasa: It is very hard for me to answer that question because the manga already finished (laughs). For me, it is very hard for me to put myself into the position of the protagonist but I hope I will find the answer to that question one day.
CtrlGeekPod: Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
Orikasa: I have been doing voice-acting for awhile now. I am still going to treat every single work that I get with all my best. I will continue to do my best so I don’t disappoint fans.
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