A Seiyuu is essentially a Japanese voice actor and just like English-speaking voice actors, they can work in a variety of productions, including movies, television series, radio and even providing voices for video game characters. Seiyuus are so respected that Japan has several magazines devoted to the art of voice-acting and also boasts over one hundred seiyuu "schools" to help train and prepare aspiring voice actors.

In the West, the term seiyuu has come to denote the Japanese voice actor while "voice actor" is used to indicate the English-speaking actor after a movie or series has been translated. The word seiyuu is actually a shortened version of the kanji used for "voice actor" - koe no haiyu.

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