Dubbed Audio Style Guide - Lector Dubbing
Table of Contents
This document contains a list of required practices when creating dubbed audio in Lector style for Netflix content. Consult your Netflix representative for any specifications not covered in this document.
For events conveyed through Forced Narratives, consult the Forced Narratives Guidelines and Style Guide for Dubbing and the FN Instructions for Polish.
1. Translation Requirements
1.1 Main Dialogue
- All main dialogue in the source (original) language should be translated unless specifically noted.
- Due to timing limitations, some of the dialogue may be condensed/truncated as long as it retains all essential elements of the plot.
- Please refrain from dubbing redundant words such as character names and repetitions.
1.2 Character Names
- Do not translate proper names (e.g., Peter, Suzanne), unless directed by production or approved by Netflix. EXCEPTION: Famous historical/mythical characters and/or nicknames that might vary from language to language.
- Local pronunciation of character names can be used in the voice-over, as long as the names are consistently pronounced throughout the series.
1.3 On-screen Text Treatment
- On-screen text should only be included if plot-pertinent and should either be voiced by the lector or conveyed through Forced Narratives, according to what works best for the specific content.
- A plot-pertinent on-screen text or sign that appears multiple times does not need to be voiced by the lector or forced each time it’s on-screen.
- Main Title: The on-screen main title should be forced -rather than voiced by the lector.
- Episode Title: The episode title should be forced -rather than voiced by the lector- if it appears on-screen and is not voiced over in the original audio. If the episode title is voiced over in the original audio, then it should be voiced by the lector.
- Netflix Credits: Netflix original credits should not be voiced by the lector or forced, unless instructed otherwise by your Netflix point of contact.
1.4 Foreign Dialogue
Foreign dialogue refers to dialogue spoken in a language other than the primary language of the content.
- Unless specifically instructed, foreign dialogue should be translated and voiced by the lector only if it is meant to be understood by the audience and is plot-pertinent.
- Songs/ditties should be translated and either voiced by the lector or conveyed through Forced Narratives only if plot pertinent and if the rights have been granted. In some cases, only the first verse should be translated to give the audience context on the theme of the song.
- For Musicals/Music-themed Shows with long, plot-pertinent musical sequences, songs should be localized by means of a forced narrative file. E.g. “The Get Down”. If it is unclear whether or not the show is to be considered a musical or music-themed show, please consult your Netflix POC.
- Rights vary across various song categories: original (commissioned for the content), licensed, and public domain. Always seek clearance from the Netflix Dubbing representative regarding song rights.
1.6 Archival Footage
- Unless specifically instructed, plot-pertinent archival footage should be translated and voiced by the lector if the rights have been granted.
- If the archival footage is not plot-pertinent or is part of the ambiance or indistinct, there is no need to voice or force.
1.7 Sensitive Language
- Consult the Sensitive Terms for your language in the Terminology tool.
- The Terminology tool should be referenced and completed to ensure consistency across same-language assets.
- Voice-over should begin in relative synchronicity with the original dialogue.
- Unless directed to do so by Netflix, VO-Style dubbing – whereby original dialogue is at first heard at normal volume before the voice-over starts – should not be used. Please refer to the VO-Style dubbing guidelines for treatment.
- Local pronunciation of character names, places or foreign words is acceptable.
- Please ensure pronunciation of key terms is consistent across episodes and seasons.
3. Technical Aspects
For information on audio mix and delivery formats, please reference the Localization, Accessibility, and Dubbing Branded Delivery Specifications.
- For a 5.1 OV Printmaster, dip center channel only. Only for very loud sections or for films with very wide dynamic range, it’s acceptable to dip Left and Right as well, no more than 6db.
- For a 2.0 Printmaster, dip both channels
- OV may be manually dipped when necessary. Voiceover may not be raised above loudness spec to overcome very loud OV sections.
- Dip OV 6-12 db, per mixer discretion. Dubbed audio should be clear and intelligible with natural presence of OV dialog underneath. These are subjective choices relating to the dynamics of the OV and the perceived volume of the OV and Voiceover.
- Updated treatment of main title/episode title and Netflix credit
- Added links to FN guidelines and instructions
- Removed section 1.7 regarding approval of localized scripts prior to recording
- Revised Objective to include Documentaries
- Revised Section 1.6 Consistency
- Revised Section 2.1 Sync to include/specify VO-Style dubbing guidelines
- Added Section 3.3 Archival Material for Documentaries
- Revised section 1.3 On-screen Text Treatment – 2nd bullet point added, 3rd, 5th and 8th bullet points revised
- Revised section 4 Technical Aspects - added all bullet points
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