Toru Furyua is a Japanese voice actor and narrator. One of his better known roles is from the classic Sailor Moon where he played heartthrob and costumed hero, Tuxedo Mask. Other notable roles include Yamcha (Dragon Ball shows), Narrator (Mobile Suit Gundam 00), Tokita Kohsaku (Paprika), Seiya (Saint Seiya), among others. While at Anime Boston I had the opportunity to sit down with Toru and ask him a few questions about his versatility, his time as Tuxedo Mask, and what he feels is missing when works are translated from their original language.
As a veteran actor in the industry, what changes have you seen or experienced through the decades?
Toru: I’ve had various experiences, but the biggest I’ve had within the context of anime is I can become a hero, and that’s always been the pillar of encouragement that I’ve kept on keeping as a voice actor.
Tuxedo Mask was arguably every girl’s anime crush. Do you have any funny stories regarding fans finding out you were the voice actor of Tuxedo Mask?
Toru: A funny and happy moment for me just came a few moments ago, here at Anime Boston. There were two cute girls cosplaying Sailor Moon and Sailor Mars, and I got into a photo with them. They were very excited when they found out I was the voice actor of Tuxedo Mask.
When anime comes to America, what do you find is lost in the translation from sub to dub?
Toru: Well, I don’t have too many opportunities to compare the versions, so it’s hard to say. One of the closest experiences I’ve had is a personal experience with the movies that I watch on planes. I love to watch American superhero movies, which have been dubbed into Japanese. While watching them on planes, they would be showing up in subs. I find it slightly annoying when there is a discrepancy between what they’re saying in the subs and what they’re saying in the Japanese dubs. I think there are instances where the Japanese voice actor may deviate from the script to ad lib, which may not always carry over in the translation.
What inspired you to adopt a pseudonym for some of your works?
Answer: This started when I was in Gundam Wing 00 when I adopted the name Noboru Sogetsu. This was because I was already performing as the narrator under my own name.
Although Toru and I had to communicate through a translator, I found that the feeling and meaning behind his responses was not lost in translation. I am happy I was able to provide Toru with as much entertainment as he provided me. On behalf of everyone at Mithical Entertainment, I would like to thank Toru Furuya for his time and responses.