Crunchyroll refuses to negotiate with Mob Psycho 100 lead Dub Voice Actor – Spiel Times

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Kyle McCarley is a Los Angeles-based voice-over artist who has appeared in multiple anime series English dubs. A few of his accolades include him reprising valued roles in Nier; Automata Video Game, HBO’s Infinity Train, and Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans, etc. But what really hooks the crowd is his reprisal of the primary character in the Anime adaptation series of Mob Psycho 100 originally by ONE. Yet it seems due to certain conflicts of interests, Crunchyroll has decided to recast the Mob Psycho 100 Season 3 cast after both parties broke out in disagreement over a union contract.
Crunchyroll is an American distribution, production, and licensing streaming service and has over the generations covered many notable Anime productions. But the truth of the matter is that licensing Anime episodes are no easy task. For multiple reasons, Crunchyroll has displayed behaviors that seem to shrug off as anti-union. 

Kyle McCarley who does voice-over-acting of Shigeo ‘Mob’ Kageyama in the famous hit Mob Psycho 100 series about the world’s strongest esper, found himself in a conflict with Crunchyroll. McCarley reached out to his fans over Youtube and begins his video – “I was super excited about this, I love playing Mob and I love you guys” and mentions that “there have been talks between the casts of this show and Crunchyroll who are producing this show about potentially producing this show on a SAG-AFTRA Union contract”. He then goes on to mention that he will no longer be reprising his role as the protagonist of the famous Japanese anime.
Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists is an American union that protects and brings together behind-the-screen/on-screen freelancing artists of the nation. Kyle McCarley in addition to his video described the benefits that artists receive in a Union in his Tweet thread. 
This generally leads to better terms for all workers, because as a collective, you have sway in these negotiations. How much you get paid, how long your hours are, how hard those hours are, how often you get breaks or time off, what safety precautions are taken, etc. (2/8)
— 𝕂𝕪𝕝𝕖 𝕄𝕔ℂ𝕒𝕣𝕝𝕖𝕪 🇺🇦🏳️‍🌈 (@KyleMcCarley) September 20, 2022

Amongst the major benefits, McCarley mentions, the one that stands out are health insurance and retirement plans. America does not have universal health insurance schemes, and any coverage is paid for by the doer himself. Unlike corporations or companies which are employed artists/workers permanently, freelancers have to fend for themselves.
Freelancing voice actors like Kyle McCarley often are hired by multiple different organizations and production companies. There is no one single employer for them and hence issuing health insurance becomes impossible.
We're freelancers. We work for a lot of different employers in very short bursts. So it wouldn't make any financial sense for any of them to give us health and retirement benefits on their own. That's where SAG-AFTRA comes in. (6/8)
— 𝕂𝕪𝕝𝕖 𝕄𝕔ℂ𝕒𝕣𝕝𝕖𝕪 🇺🇦🏳️‍🌈 (@KyleMcCarley) September 20, 2022

Kyle McCarley describes that SAG-AFTRA union comes-in in this aspect. They provide health insurance and retirement benefits to all the artists under them. McCarley himself is a union member and sits as a member of SAG-AFTRA’s dubbing steering committee. 
The way SAG-AFTRA compensates for such schemes is by collecting a small fee on top of the artist’s usual payment. For this, the companies usually have to make a deal with the union’s contract. Otherwise, the artists would have to sign contracts all by themselves. The union defines some uniform contract agreements for all artists, which serve as a base foundation.

Kyle McCarley told Kotaku that Crunchyroll usually records the English dub simultaneously when the actual Japanese dubbing is going on in the native studio of the Anime. McCarley said that Crunchyroll only approached him on September 8th, which really confused him given that the release date of the Anime was so close.

Kyle McCarley wanted to negotiate. He said he had a meeting with all the casts in a Zoom meeting and all of them decided to talk to Crunchyroll. McCarley talked to Treslyn Williams, the voiceover department head of SAG-AFTRA, and wanted to simply talk with Crunchyroll about finding a middle ground.
The entire cast backed him up on this and gave their support. McCarley tweets #JustaMeeting on Twitter over the fact that he didn’t demand long-term union-backed agreements or anything of that sort, all he wanted was a chance at negotiating something that will help both the artists and still pay for the company. Crunchyroll outright declined, according to Kyle McCarley.
The scene with production/streaming companies like Crunchyroll is that it is often a political battle with unions.
It isn’t always possible to get permission on documents to push the voice artist over the limits. Pushing the artist too much is wrong, of course. But sometimes difficult Anime dubbing does require some serious prima-facie effort which should not be ignored.

As things are, McCarley is not returning for Season 3 of Mob Psycho 100. Now, this should not make you vilify Crunchyroll. They aren’t some dark-honed pedophiles hiding behind a rugged black curtain with smiles on their faces. Neither are they corporate multimillion giants who have a lot to screech from the artists. It’s not easy being Crunchyroll with Anime episodes (especially demanding ones like Mob Psycho 100) costing thousands of dollars in just one episode.
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