ZOMFG TEH REI!!!!11!1
Amanda Winn-Lee is an American voice actress, writer and ADR director who works mainly on anime dubs. She was the voice of Mimiru in .hack//SIGN
, Rally Vincent in Gunsmith Cats
, Yohko Mano in Devil Hunter Yohko
, Momiji Kushinada in Blue Seed
, and was featured most notably as Rei Ayanami of Neon Genesis Evangelion
fame. Aside from voice work she has quite often handled production, ADR direction, and the scripting of various projects for her dubbing company Gaijin Productions, LLC. She has also been credited as Amanda Winn, before she was married.
She can also be heard in the commentary for the Region 1 The End Of Evangelion
DVD along with fellow voice actors Taliesin Jaffe and husband/Gaijin co-owner Jason C. Lee (credited as "Jaxon Lee" under the S.A.G. to avoid confusion with the other Jason Lee).
Said commentary has gained a reputation for being somewhat controversial among fans, and to this day (nearly a decade later
) she gets hate mail about it. Is it a crime against art, or a rollicking good time? Check out a a few excerpts here
and decide for yourself.
Expanding on her anime work, Winn-Lee also provided the voice of Konoko, the protagonist of the Bungie Studios video game Oni
Winn-Lee served as ADR director, dub script writer, and producer for the English versions of The End of Evangelion
and Evangelion: Death and Rebirth
. She also directed and performed leading roles in the English versions of Dead Leaves
and the Read or Die
She had been working with ADV Films
for years before she moved out to Los Angeles to create Gaijin Productions.
The couple's son Nicholas was born in November 2004, but they soon learned that he had a rare form of infantile leukemia. Amanda dropped out of anime work entirely to, as she put it, literally spend the next full year living in her son's intensive care unit at the hospital. Even afterwards she had to spend most of her time caring for her son - though by 2007 he'd been cancer-free for three years, the benchmark that there is no significant chance of recurrence. Problem is that the anime industry crashed in late 2007-into-2008, and the west coast distributors were particularly hard hit, so she doesn't really appear in that much anime anymore (though she does do work for video games produced by west coast studios).
It was suggested by Spike Spencer
(her friend as well as fellow voice actor) at Nan Desu Kan 2007 that she was interested in reprising her role(s) in the upcoming Rebuild of Evangelion
films. However, in May 2009, North American anime distributor FUNimation
announced that the role of Rei for the first film Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone would be voiced by Brina Palencia
for reasons that still aren't clear (Palencia voiced the role again in 2.0). It has vaguely been mentioned but not confirmed that she simply didn't want to travel back out to Texas for the role because she's based in Los Angeles now (though there's always rampant speculation about half a dozen other alternate and contradicting explanation).
While she hasn't worked on much anime in several years (Persona 4: The Animation
being the most recent example) so that she could take care of her son's leukemia and subsequent health problems resulting from treatment, you can still hear her in video games, especially Atlus
titles, such as the PS2
version of Disgaea
, Luminous Arc
, Digital Devil Saga
, Persona 4
, and Trauma Team
Winn-Lee is also famous/infamous in some fan circles for antics at various cons in the late 90's, most of them involving alcohol. Despite being best known for voicing Rei, it's amusing to note that she has a lot more in common with Misato Katsuragi
. She's famous for being very foul mouthed and also very funny (she's the person in the room most likely to crack an utterly hilarious dirty joke, but one that you dare not repeat in polite company - just listen to her audio commentaries).