Crunchyroll was criticized on Tuesday for announcing that a new English-language voice actor would take over the series' starring role in the upcoming third season of Mob Psycho 100. The news comes just a few weeks before the premiere of Mob Psycho 100s season 3 in early October.
Kyle McCarley, the original voice actor for Shigeo Mob Kageyama, explained to viewers that he would unlikely return to perform the role of Mob in the upcoming third season of the Mob Psycho 100. The reasons, as he understood them, were due to a conflict in negotiations between McCarley and Crunchyroll over whether or not the actors would sign a union contract.
Crunchyroll will not be able to produce season three of Mob Psycho 100 on a SAG-AFTRA budget, according to McCarley in the video. It's not about money, it's about people. They're willing to pay me at least what I'll be getting on a union contract, and perhaps even more.
McCarley goes on to state that, in lieu of a SAG-AFTRA contract, he agreed to perform on the upcoming season of Mob Psycho 100 under a non-union contract, with the condition that Crunchyroll meet with SAG-AFTRA representatives to discuss a potential contract for future productions.
Crunchyroll has historically been very, very hesitant to accept anything they produce on a SAG-AFTRA contract, and because of the role that I play in this particular program, and this particular show's popularity with you guys, it seemed like there was a chance to rectify that.
Crunchyroll reacted angrily when asked for a comment, claiming that the company would have to recast some roles from the English version of Mob Psycho 100's upcoming season. The reaction online has been outraged, with anime voice actors, critics, and followers calling for Crunchyroll to take steps to recognize SAG-AFTRA and to negotiate in good faith.
Crunchyrolls' official statement to Polygon has been provided:
Crunchyroll is excited to release the English dub for Mob Psycho 100 III for the third season, the same day and date as the Japanese broadcast. We will need to recast several roles to accommodate the new voice talent, and we would thank any departing cast members for their contributions to previous seasons.
Crunchyroll's acquisition of Right Stuf, one of the world's largest anime merchandise stores, came to light in August, revealing that the increasingly monolithic company had acquired Funimation, an anime entertainment company and streaming service owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. The company has continued to expand and consolidate, with Crunchyroll purchasing Right Stuf, one of the largest online anime merchandise stores, in August, eliminating the Erotica genre content and product on the retailers' website.
Crunchyroll has released the third season of Mob Psycho 100 on October 5.