"You, as an actor, are so disposable"
Before the appointment of Sarah Natochenny as the voice of Pokémon's Ash Ketchum, the voice actor in the English version of the series was actually Veronica Taylor. Now that Ash's arc has come to an end in the anime series, Taylor has reflected on the time when she was essentially "fired" from the role.
As a result of the abrupt recast in 2006, Taylor still struggles and isn't even sure she's properly said goodbye to Ash just yet. She further notes how her case isn't an isolated one and that it's just the unfortunate realities of the acting industry.
Here's part of what she had to say during a chat with Kotaku:
Veronica Taylor: âI don't know if I fully have said [goodbye] to Ash. When we were all recast, or firedâhowever you want to put itâafter the eighth season, it was incredibly devastating to not have a chance to go on with the show. Iâve had a bit of PTSD with the ending, of just how sad it is.â
"You, as an actor, are so disposable. You have to come to terms with that...When youâre in the booth, you have to just try and be in the moment and put all of that out of your mind. Otherwise itâs all so crippling.â
In the end, Sarah Natochenny was the one to follow Ash's arc to its conclusion. She even shared her final emotional moments of recording when the series wrapped up last September, calling it an "extraordinary privilege" to voice the same character for 17 years.
Veronica Taylor also chimed in at the time of Ash's goodbye, mentioning how she had "loved every minute" working on the anime and how it had been "an incredible 25 year journey" with him, Pikachu and the Pokémon community.