One Piece: Re-Licensed by Funimation

Robotic Red

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http://animeonline.com/index.php?page=news_featured&ent_id=101235

Here, production manager Justin Cook discusses the edits that FUNimation will make to keep One Piece on the air.

xxxx

First of all, how excited are you to have One Piece?
COOK: It’s great. We actually got our hopes up once before for One Piece, but to have it now and to have the chance to bring it back to the fans, to have the chance to restore it to its original luster and original clever dialogue is really our main goal. We want to capture the essence of what One Piece is and to bring that back as much as we can to a television audience. And of course, the uncut DVDs will be the original work in its entirety.

Bliss! So you’ll be using new voices of course.
COOK: Yes, and on the casting we are not trying to match either the Japanese voices or the former dub. We are looking at both sets of voices, but we don’t want our cast trying to imitate a voice that, in our opinion, might not necessarily fit that character.

Any plans for wacky accents?
COOK: If it fits the character, we might find a place for some kind of accent. In our brief history, we have found places in a show where an accent of some kind really fits. But we don’t want to force an international feel on the show when it already really comes across in the animation. And of course, a bad accent will usually be more distracting than even bad acting.

I think One Piece fans – including me - are concerned about Nico Robin’s wacky hick accent and Sanji’s God-awful Brooklyn accent.
COOK: I am almost totally certain that none of the Straw-Hat pirates, the main characters, will have any kind of accent at all.

And the pirate accent that everyone else seemed to have?
COOK: If you have a guy who is obviously a pirate with a peg leg and a hook for a hand, you might get away with a traditional pirate voice, but the production team really doesn’t want that just running rampant throughout the whole thing. We’re sure there will be some instances where it will be appropriate but we’ll never use an accent if we can’t do it perfectly.

Are there any announcements about who will be working on the dub?
COOK: There are two line producers that are working on One Piece at this time: Mike McFarland and Christopher Bevins. Of course, Mike McFarland was a line producer for Trinity Blood, and a voice director for Trinity Blood as well as Fullmetal Alchemist, a number of Dragonball episodes, and a couple of other series. And Chris Bevins worked on Burst Angel and Samurai 7. We have a very experienced lead staff working on the show. The head writers working on this are John Burgmeier and Eric Vale, both of whom are taking an equal chunk of the workload. As far as the cast, I can’t say as of yet.

I know Bevins at least is a pretty big One Piece fan.
COOK: Actually, both Mike and Bevins are extreme One Piece fans. Both have felt that so far, One Piece has been…a little lackluster in its performance and are both very anxious at the chance to step in and try to course-correct this ship.

That’s very diplomatic of you.
COOK: Well, you’ve got to understand that when One Piece first went on the air [here in the U.S.], it was at a very different time slot than what we’re looking at now, so a lot of the standards that they were held to, we aren’t. Instead of Saturday morning at 9 a.m., we’re looking at Saturday night. There is a very different set of standards for that time slot.

So what else will FUNimation’s TV version not be doing?
COOK: What I can say for sure is that there will be no smoking in One Piece-land, as according to Cartoon Network, consumption of alcohol will be missing from the show, and obviously, a lot of the violence and gore will be missing. I know as soon as I say, “No smoking,” everyone’s mind immediately goes to Sanji and his sucker, and we will be continuing that. The whole reason the sucker is there is that it’s just too much work to repaint everything in the shot to remove the cigarette. You have to consider, for every one second of footage that’s aired, there are 30 individual frames that need to be painted. So, for a three-minute scene of Sanji with a cigarette in his mouth, that’s easily a week to two weeks of work, doing nothing else but that for eight hours a day. We’re much more concerned with finding a cast that fits the characters and brings the characters to life to whet the appetites of the fans so that they want to go check out the uncut DVD version of the show. And I think the change in voices and the script styling of the show will be enough to get the fans interested in the original series. We know we’re going to have to ask for forgiveness on the missing violence and the missing cigarettes, but there’s nothing we can do about that besides not air it on TV at all.

And it’ll still be totally uncut on DVD.
COOK: Yes.

So then what about the character of Smoker, who smokes two cigars at the same time? The previous version edited them out and renamed him Chaser.
COOK: Well, there’s actually an exception with cigars and pipes. All we have to do is get rid of the smoke and the burning bit at the end. For whatever reason, [the FCC broadcast standards] are more concerned with getting rid of cigarettes. But cigars and pipes can be shown, provided they’re not lit or being used.

But there are other shows like Naruto, which airs close to the same time as One Piece will, in which characters are seen with cigarettes with just the smoke removed, though not main characters like Sanji.
COOK: We have been asked not to do that, though we did ask if we could. We’ve been asked that before. “Why can the show before you or after you do this and you don’t?” We’re just going with the orders we’ve been given. We’re not sure why other shows can do certain things but it’s not okay for One Piece. In the Jaya saga, there is a pretty major character who smokes all the time on the island. That’s an instance of a character that smokes all the time, as well as having the cigarette in his mouth, where we have to decide if we can replace it with a toothpick or edit out the smoking altogether. Basically, it’s going to be a group effort to decide how to best handle it without steering away from the idea and the feel of One Piece.

xxxx

Upon further reading, I'm glad about the voices, but I'm disappointed by the continuation of some of the edits.

At least DVDs will be uncut.
 
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Vato Loco!

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Hmm... Bittersweet victory I guess. Still it sounds like they'll be keeping a few of the edits that 4kids made. From reading that, the tv version doesn't sound all that appealing. The DVD sounds like dub bliss though, and it's probably the only thing I'll watch. Other than that we have our beloved fansub groups.

Damn cartoon network.
 

rocklee87

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any guesses on the VAs?

i think justin cook could be sanji....chris sabat will be garp or aokiji, zorro and random background characters

kari walgren nami

thats all i can guess
 

worm34

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That's the best news I've heard all day. One Piece may finally get the respect it deserves. Now how many edits will they have is my question. How much will be cut off or what. Either way this is just great news.
 

Absolutio

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arent FUNimation are also the company who licensed Dragon Ball Z back then? If it is, DBZ in english wasn't bad at all!
 

treetop430

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Oh damn. I can PUT MY PICKET SIGNS AWAY. HA-LAY-LOO-JAH. Here's me, for the past couple of months, lamenting to my poor roommate's ears about how "damn man, I would love to see a SEXY English rendering of OP and I'm painfully doubtful it'll EVER HAPPEN! WRYYYY" and then this comes.

:heart: I swear to goodness, if people don't realize the attempt to find some solace under Funimation (which is quite good I might say). I'm current on the manga chapters and anime in Japan, but I just seriously appreciate that they realize they were really screwing over the English version on One Piece. SO. EXCITED. I hope that even though it seems damn near impossible, that starting with the Jaya (I wonder if they'll make Bellamy as bad as he was?!), at least some credibility will be restored...c'mon Funimation. @_@ I'm not (too) nitpicky and generally neutral, but they'd better work off their asses for one of the best series in the history of ever.
 

zagman505

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we're finally free (mostly) from the terrible 4kids dub?! NICE. i'm really looking forwards to the uncut dvd version... maybe one piece will FINALLY have a chance to shine in the dub area...
 

ibra87

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There is also a FAQ for the funimation dub over at AP:
http://apforums.net/showthread.php?t=12778

And also, the main translator of Funimation has actually a username there and has answered some questions, although he can't answer all questions, just those that are strictly about translation. His name is Mato.
 

Split Second Shot

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I'm just glad 4Kids doesn't have it anymore. Imo, it was horrible. I'm a HUGE one piece fan, and was disappointed in the dub. Well, atleast the voices will be better. Btw, the VA for NIco Robin id suck..a lot =/

Edit: I just realized after reading a couple posts in AP, I agree. I can FINALLY convince all those idiots who joked about One Piece, that's it's ACTUALLY GOOD.
 
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