With Hayao Miyazaki's latest, Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea, scoring acclaim and breaking box office records in its native country, it's only a matter of time until it hits the US and get an Oscar nomination the way Spirited Away and Howl's Moving Castle did.
The US release has been set for sometime in 2009, and GhibliWorld already has the English voice cast, which includes more than a couple of A-list celebs.
I have to admit, for the most part I never really liked watching anime in English dubs. I'm not sure why, but since it was animated with the Japanese voice in mind and I've got no hang-ups about subtitles, I just never found it necessary. Also, they're usually pretty friggin' terrible. Miyazaki's films, though, tend to get some great voice actors for the English dub, and Ponyo's is no different.
Produced by Frank Marshall and Kathleen Kennedy, the voice actors involved are Matt Damon, Tina Fey, Cate Blanchett, Liam Neeson, Lily Tomlin, Betty White, Frankie Jonas, Noah Cyrus and Cloris Leachman.
I think seeing clips of Dancing with the Stars on The Soup forever destroyed my image of Cloris Leachman, but the first seven are very promising names. Knowing the story—about a fish-turned-little girl who befriends a five-year-old boy—Frankie Jonas and Noah Cyrus are probably going to be the main players. Frankie Jonas is, of course, a member of the ever-popular Jonas Brothers, while Noah Cyrus is Miley Cyrus' not-so-famous younger sister, who is also trying to pursue a career as an actress.
P.S. There is one anime that has an English dub I prefer to the Japanese one. Of course it just so happens to be a Ghibli film also: it's the one for Whisper of the Heart. Brittany Snow is just fantastic in it. Here's my favorite scene from the movie:
Never fails to bring a smile.