What's it like working for Nozomi Entertainment? What do you do on the production team? What was your favorite project to work on? We're putting the magnifying glass over our production team to give you a closer look at what happens behind the scenes! In today's blog post, we will be talking with Judy, a producer who's been with Nozomi Entertainment for many, many years. Let's get things rolling!
Q: Who are you and what do you do within Nozomi Entertainment?
Hi, I'm Judy! I'm a Producer. I create anime Blu-rays and DVDs for the American market.
Q: Tell us something interesting about yourself - any hobbies, favorite color, fun fact?
I met my husband while playing Final Fantasy XI. He was a Dark Knight, and I was a White Mage. Nowadays we play Final Fantasy XIV - and he's still a Dark Knight, and I'm still a White Mage.
Q: How long have you been with the company?
Q: What got you interested in doing what you do?
Even as a kid, I loved the anime art style of the 80s and 90s. I also enjoy languages; learning Japanese was really rewarding. So, working for an anime company seemed like a good fit!
Q: Could you give us a quick rundown of what you do on a day-to-day process?
Step 1: Check e-mail
Step 2: ANY OF TEN MILLION DIFFERENT THINGS
(Really, how it works is that each producer is handed a project, and then we're in charge of seeing that project through from start to finish. So, on any given day I could be subtitling, encoding, authoring, writing liner notes, translating songs, going over dub adapt scripts, doing QC... No two days are the same! It's part of what makes the job fun.)
Q: What was your first project?
I'm pretty sure it was QC checks on the K.O. Beast DVDs. It was the first time I had ever seen a stamper disc!
Q: What has been your favorite project to work on so far?
I'm not sure I can pick just one... These are all tied for first: G Gundam, ARIA, Emma, Gundam Wing, and Dirty Pair.
Q: The # of times you’ve watched something over and over for a product check?
I try not to count... but it's a lot. The minimum is two (once for creating the subtitle files, once for doing a disc check if there's only one language), but add another watch for every additional language, every additional sub-track, and every time you fix a problem and have to do checks all over again. Just recently I had to watch Maquia six times in a row (and I still cried every time).
Q: What was your longest project and why?
If you count them as all one project, the Dirty Pair series. Between the TV series, the OVA series, the movies, and Flash, I probably spent the better part of a year working on Dirty Pair. But it was worth it!
Q: Could you explain the process from how the materials you receive becomes the final product that we see on store shelves?
1) First we receive materials from Japan: video raws, scripts, etc.
2) Then we take those video raws and make winburn files (video files with timecodes burned into them).
3) Using those winburn files, we make the subtitle tracks.
4) Going back to the video raws, we make a version of the show that's specifically encoded for Blu-ray.
5) With our Blu-ray software, we link up the video, subtitles and audio, and program in scripts for the menus.
6) Once the Blu-ray is built, we make a check disc for every disc in the set.
7) Using those check discs, we test to make sure the menus work, watch for any video glitches, listen for audio pops, and check for subtitle errors.
8) Was there a problem or an error? Fix it, make a new check disc, and repeat checks until it's done!
9) The finished discs are then sent to replication, to be mass-produced.
Is the show going to have an English dub? If so, these bonus steps are added:
A) We send the winburn files to the dubbing house, which they use to make script adaptations (rewriting the dialogue to fit the lip flaps in the animation).
B) Then we go over the script adapts to make sure there are no errors or lore problems.
C) Various actors come in to audition for major roles, and we choose the ones that fit best.
D) After all the recording is done, we listen to the finished audio files.
E) Was there a problem or an error? Let them know, they'll fix it, and repeat checks until it's done!
Q: Favorite Nozomi title?
I still can't pick a favorite! If I have to pare it down to three: G Gundam, Gundam Wing, and ARIA.
Q: Favorite Anime? Are you watching anything currently? (Outside of Nozomi)
Um... Well, there's Detective Conan, Cardcaptor Sakura, Rurouni Kenshin, One Punch Man... (I'm bad at picking favorites, can you tell?) The husband and I are currently watching Dragonball - all of it. Started with the first episode of the original, and we're just now up to the Android saga. We'll be done sometime in the year 2041.
Q: If you had a super power what would it be?
The ability to add more hours to the day. Think of all the stuff you could get done! (Or how long you could sleep, I guess?)
Q: What is your favorite animal?
Now *this* one's easy. Cats!