Mike Sinterniklaas Interview, Anime Boston 2008

Reporter(s): Psycho Red
Transcriber(s): Miki

After spending countless days putting in a lot of effort, I was finally able to set up a time with Anime Boston 2008 to interview esteemed guest Mike Sinterniklaas, voice actor of many characters such as Horohoro (Shaman King), Guardian Mahad (Yu-Gi-Oh!), Mr. 9 (One Peice) Seviper (Pokemon), and Isaza (Mushishi,). Given certain time constraints by theAnime Boston staff, the interview was not as lengthy as I originally anticipated, but I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.

What is your favorite thing to do while at conventions like Anime Boston?

My favorite thing to do is to check out the rooms and attend the other panels, but when it’s all said and done, actually doing the panels is really fun because I get to geek out about stuff and people totally put up with it [cheers]. They ask me the silly questions and I give the most ridiculous answers and it’s [the] one place I can feel comfortable.

Why did you go into voice acting? Was there a drive that fueled that decision?

Well, I really love anime – all sorts of anime when I was younger, but when I was in high school we used to watch anime, undubbed, unsubbed, just straight out of Japanese tv… it was the 80s. I’m older than you are. I had always been an actor, theatre, and all that Shakspearean [stuff], but in anime I really liked the crazy sense of imagination of going beyond the beyond, and theres really no other way to be a part of that world. I can’t go wrong, and I get to be a part of it by doing part of it.

Was there a series that you worked on before that you enjoyed any more than the others?

Well, I worked as a voice actor and a director and now that I have other directors working under me at the studio, I’m also a producer. I gotta say the first thing I ever did was Bubblegum Crisis. It was one of those shows I was a huge fan of before I really got into the industry. I was walking on a cloud the whole time. I was running off copies of tapes to give to actors to review. I was like “I’m doing something important today! I’m making copies of Bubblegum Crisis episode three!” so that someone could review it and dub it better. It was so amazing. I got to play guitar on episode 6. And, then years later, I was in Tokyo and met the original director of BBC, who I got to thank for creating something that got me so interested in the genre. And then it was the first one I worked on professionally, and then he says, “Oh, you play the song?” and gave me a guitar [for me to play it], so I had to remember back from 14 years ago. 

Was there ever a day you just couldn’t get the right line out?

Yes. Well, it happened in Ninja Turtles mostly. It’s very controlled dubbing, and you’re there by yourself, but when you do group recording, it could be very distracting.

My Ninja Turtle brothers were goofy a lot. When I started, I was the new guy and they’d all worked with 4kids before and I hadn’t. So I was trying to be disciplined and professional and they were being like retards in summer camp! So I couldn’t get a line out at one point. They kept making jokes, kept laughing, and the director, Sue Blue, who was a Transformer and the original Turtles director from the 80s, she was over the phone and all she new was “Go! Action! Rolling!” and I was not speaking, so I was looking like the jerk. And at some point I just… I wasnt angry, but I was like “You make me look so professional!” So i just blurted out “Ninja, please!” and it just stuck. “Ninja, please” became a catch phrase because I wasn’t allowed to speak.

Well this is all the time we have for now, thanks for allowing me to interview you, and hope you enjoy the remainder of Anime Boston!

Note: Some of the audio from the recording was rough, resulting in the interview transcript to require some edittig to make sense.