As the competition rate in the voice actor industry is intensifying, modern voice actors are required to have various things. Such as ability, individuality, expressiveness, and in some cases singing ability. So, how much do Anime voice actors earn? What is their payment system? Well, here’s a glimpse of the industry.

A delve into the income of Voice actors in detail

how much to anime voice actors earn? everything revealed
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The salary of voice actors belonging to production is a commission system. Many voice actors belong to production, but because they are hired as sole proprietors, unlike ordinary office workers, there is no salary system and no bonuses. So income depends on ability and amount of work.

A highly competitive industry, perhaps because its ability is directly linked to income. In order to acquire the ability, it is important to build the foundation first.

Average annual salary of voice actors by age group

anime voice actors earn payment sytem
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If you just look at the amount and calculate it simply, you might think that the voice actor’s salary and annual income are low. But there is a reason why it has happened.

  • Many people are active as voice actors but this is because their annual income ranges from about 5,000 yen to tens of millions of yen.
  • Due to the large number of voice actors and the wide range of annual income, the average salary will inevitably decrease.

However, as long as they work hard at the narrow gate and go through it. They will able to play an active role as a single voice actor without doing a side job.

Rank and Unit price

how much do anime voice actors earn in a year
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Taking a 30-minute anime as an example, For anime voice actors, income fluctuates according to the rank set by the Japan Actors Union. For newcomers, it starts at

  • 15,000 (US$145.44) yen and the maximum amount is 45,000 yen (US$436.16).
  • There is no upper limit to the unit price per episode, as they will have the opportunity to negotiate a guarantee if they are not eligible for the rank.
  • It does not fluctuate due to differences in the amount of dialogue. In other words, if they have the opportunity to speak even one word, they can receive a guarantee according to their rank.

So, how much does a new anime voice actor earn?

In the case of a new voice actor, even if it is the leading role or heroine role, it will start from 15,000 yen. And if the share of the office is deducted, it will be about 10,000 yen (US$97) by hand.

  • However, raising a name is a unique opportunity so they have to be enthusiastic when shooting the leading role after auditioning.
  • Deeper into the rank, it basically goes up with the number of years of experience, so the ability is not reflected.
  • We can see the harshness of the voice actor industry. If you do not acquire the ability proportional to the rank, you will be shaken off from the competition.

It is important to learn from the basics in order to develop an ability proportional to rank.

Difference in income from work

voice actors earning in japan
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Anime, games, narration, radio, pachinko, dubbing, all jobs cannot be taken without ability.

1. Game

Generally calculated on a character-by-character basis. For example, a newcomer costs 30 yen per word, and a proven voice actor costs 200 yen per word. Seems to jump up more for the popular Bishoujo game.

2. Narration

There is no upper limit on narration, and 100,000 is the market price for TV programs. There is a possibility that you can earn more than 1 million yen for commercials. However, it is difficult to narrate a TV program or commercial unless there is a lot to do.

3. Radio

This has a strong promotion and fans service element of anime and games, so there are not hundreds of thousands in one appearance. However, if they appear on the radio, they will not only be able to raise their profile as a voice actor, but they will also have the opportunity to increase their fans.

4. Pachinko

Income fluctuates depending on the number of words as in the game, but the big difference from the game is that they can get a high amount. Even if the number of words is small.

  • The pachinko industry highly appreciates voice actors, as the voice actors say that they have earned a high income.
  • However, since the mainstream of pachinko in recent years is the tie-up of anime, there is the aspect that it will not be appointed in the first place. Unless somebody’s famous role is shot in the anime.

Therefore, the first thing to do is to play an important role in anime.

5. Dubbing

Dubbing foreign films (like Live Actions) costs about 50,000 yen (US$484.75) per hour, but it is often the case. A popular anime voice actor costs about 150,000 (US$1,455.69).

  • In order to do dubbing work, it is often nominated by the production side rather than the audition. So, a certain degree of name and ability is essential.
  • Although dubbing work is a valuable source of income for voice actors, it is said that it is not worth the hourly wage conversion. Because of the relatively big restraint time.
  • However, if the hourly salary goes up, the annual income will go up naturally, and above all, it’s a rewarding job.

No matter how popular the work is, the Salary stays the same

According to Hochu Otsuka, the voice actor of Sankonji Urokodai (Tanjiro’s master), payment to the voice actor is fixed before the recording has even started. Each voice actor is paid based on their “rank” in the industry.

He says no matter how popular the work is, the salary stays the same, even for a juggernaut like Demon Slayer. The payment is fixed and royalties aren’t paid out from the box office.

He says that if a work is popular like Demon Slayer there’s a “ripple effect” where voice actors will be booked for more events and other series. That helps the voice actors rise in the rankings. Therefore, anime voice actors’ payments aren’t based on views and fame.


Hoping that you understood the whole thing about how much anime voice actors’ payment are in Japan. Just to wrap it in one more sentence:

  • Payment is based on rank. Rank is determined based on their experience, work they’ve done in the past, how popular the voice actor is, and how long they’ve been in the industry.

Quite a tedious read for sure. But what can we do 😉 it is detailed!

Sources: Amgakuin, Daily

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Madhumoy is a high school understudy at Don Bosco High School, Tinsukia, Assam. He doesn't like to claim himself as a writer, but you can always find him somewhere jotting down his thoughts and turning them into art in their own right. When Madhumoy isn't writing, he's most likely watching other TV shows, watching anime, reading non-fiction or experiencing other paths and systems. Madhumoy lives with his grandparents and parents and a little hope.