From Our Mailbag
Letter From Louis
And An Opportunity To Write To Nicole

Recently we received this email from Louis Hurtubise, the President of Optimum Productions. It's addressed to all Sailor Moon fans. The letter has the Subject Heading: Apologies and explanation.

'Look, it's all written in funny symbols!'

Dear Sailor Moon fans,

Please accept our apologies for not keeping you up to date on the changes 
made to the Sailor Moon S and Super S series but when you have a production 
going, time is scarce.

We appreciate receiving your comments (good or bad) on Sailor Moon S and we 
wish to tell you why changes had to be made to the voice actors.

Five (5) voices were changed:

Sailor Moon (Terri Hawkes) was changed because Terri is pregnant (expecting 
twins) and had to stay in bed at the beginning of her pregnancy; she 
therefore could not attend recording sessions. We miss her very much but 
you'll agree that her personal life (especially expecting) is more 
important to her than money. Terri's replacement, Linda Ballantyne, is 
doing a great job and we hope you'll agree as well.

We were told by her agent that Sailor Venus (Stephanie Morgenstern) had 
other commitments (for on-camera work) while we were going to record the 
series. We held auditions and Emilie Barlow was picked to replace her.

Sailor Mercury (Karen Bernstein) also had commitments that prevented her 
from attending the recording sessions. Lisa Balkan replaced her and  was 
actually recommended by Karen Bernstein as Lisa's voice is very similar to 

Sabrina Grdvitch (Sailor Pluto) has left the country to further her 
on-camera acting career and  was replaced by Susan Aceron.

Rini (Tracey Hoyt) has decided that her theatrical acting schedule was 
conflicting with her voice work; she therefore decided to "hand over" the 
role to Stephanie Beard.

As far as the editorial content is concerned, you must know that the FCC 
and the CRTC, which regulate what is acceptable to show on both American 
and Canadian television, has standards that we must abide by. Any changes 
made to the content whether controversial, sexual or violent, had to be 
addressed in the most careful way. The direction the series has taken was 
dictated by their standards.

We sincerely hope you now understand why the changes were necessary and 
invite you to send your questions or comments to Nicole Thuault, our 
Vice-President in charge of Production, ( who will, 
whenever she gets a chance to do so, reply as best she can.

Yours truly,

Louis Hurtubise
Optimum Productions
121 Lakeshore Rd. E.
Suite 204
Mississauga, ON


Suga Bay Bee
All Rini, All The Time!

What are those Canadians complaining about? They say they can't hear any of the new Voice Artists! Well Torontorians (or whatever it is they're called) can listen to Rini every weekday morning on KISS 92 fm! Stephanie Beard is a dj there and goes by the handle of Suga Bay Bee! (Just don't go requesting "Who Do You Think You Are?" It's not on their playlist!)

Special thanks to Torontoran "Meg-chan" for alerting us to this way back in March!

Fans may also like to know that Sarah Lafleur is playing Amara/Sailor Uranus and that Barbara Radecki (who played Serena's mother) is now also Michelle/Sailor Neptune. Also of interest is that Jeff Lumby, who is performing Dr. Tomoe, is the brother of Lisa Lumby Richards, who is one of the writers for the show.

We thank Mr. Hurtubise for his letter which clears up some issues and helps to inform fans as to the difficulty of dub production. The Save Our Sailors campaign hopes that Optimum Productions keeps us all informed of any future changes. We welcome the opportunity for fans to be able to communicate directly with Nicole Thuault, who is the current ADR Director for the series.

This is a unique (and almost unheard of) opportunity for fans. Here is your chance to have a direct influence on the direction of the dub. Fans are reminded that in writing to Nicole to please keep your emails polite, clear & short. Please send only one letter. Please take your time in writing your letter. (Ever hear of keeping your letter in a Draft file? Try it!) Please keep in mind that all of "Sailor Moon S" has been recorded but that "Sailor Moon SuperS" has not.

Fans should also know that Optimum does not make the final decisions concerning the changes in the story, names & other elements of the series. Those changes have been made by Janice Sonski (the Executive Producer) with Cloverway, Inc. (Toei's representative in the United States). (Some changes have also been made at the request of the Cartoon Network.) Optimum, however, does have some influence in these changes and how the series gets produced. Fans could write concerning such issues but with the understanding that Optimum does not have the final say.

We disagree that the FCC figures into any of the changes made in the series (but do agree that the CRTC would intervene). Recently, in the United States, the Supreme Court ruled that cable content cannot be restricted by daypart. In other words, as far as U.S. cable is concerned, networks can show whatever they want, whenever they want. Once a carrier (your local cable provider) decides to carry a network it cannot refuse to show it during certain times of the day because, for example, it's too racy for kids.

Mr. Hurtubise's letter somewhat confirms that the Cartoon Network had left casting in the hands of Cloverway & Optimum. Some fans (and even some of the involved companies) have had the mistaken belief that the network had been more hands-on about such issues. But the network (as far as we can determine) has not; which we believe is a good policy in the long run.

Mr. Hurtubise's letter was probably prompted by the number of emails & letters which the Cartoon Network has been reportedly receiving about the new episodes. Many fans have written complaining about most of the new Voice Artists (and sometimes the music cues). We ourselves have written, on these pages, that the dub was now heading in the wrong direction. Though some of us feel that some of the new Voice Artists have improved.

We have not verified Mr. Hurtubise's claims concerning the availability of some of the previous cast members. News to the contrary could endanger their possible return. We have heard (and this is a matter of professional opinion) that Optimum has not been as flexible as it could be with scheduling their recording sessions. If true, we hope that the company would work towards being more accommodating to its stars. (yes, Stars.) If Optimum can't pay them very much, then at the very least, Optimum should give their performers better working conditions and more flexibility with the schedule.

What's at stake for Optimum (& Cloverway) is "Sailor Stars" and (as explained in a separate story) Pioneer Entertainment's possible interest in releasing VHS & DVDs of the new dubbed episodes.

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