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【连线】国剧如何走出去?向《怪奇物语》取取经



现象级美剧《怪奇物语》迎来了同样高水准的第二季,俘虏了大批恐怖片爱好者。剧中可以依稀看到约翰·卡朋特、斯蒂芬·金作品的影子,而《怪奇物语》通过对常规恐怖元素的非常规编排,换来了令人耳目一新的效果。但再好的作品,若仅仅是依靠口口相传,其影响力也将止步于此。Netflix早已洞见传播的重要性,为此不遗余力地对其进行本地化改造以适应全球观众胃口,《怪奇物语》能风靡全球,Netflix功不可没。


国剧如何走出去?向《怪奇物语》取取经


译者:杨婧娴

校对:王旻彦

笔记:朱星汉

策划:泮海伦


How Netflix made Stranger Things a global phenomenon

国剧如何走出去?向《怪奇物语》取取经


本文选自 WIRED | 取经号原创翻译

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NOT QUITE TWO years ago, Netflix launched simultaneously in 130 new countries. It now operates nearly everywhere in the world. With that expansion has come explosive international growth—along with the challenge of how best to introduce its homegrown favorites, like Stranger Things, to an audience that spans all the way to the Upside Down and back.

一年多以前,网飞同时面向130个国家的新用户开放订阅。现在,它差不多实现了全球覆盖。伴随全球地缘扩张的是网飞公司爆炸性的成长,也少不了面临诸多挑战:从我们的世界到“逆世界”(《怪奇物语》中异兽出没的平行世界),怎样打好《怪奇物语》这样卖座的本土佳作的全球牌?

 

It’s hard to overstate how important it is to Netflix’s long-term ambitions that shows like Stranger Things “travel.” The streaming service needs to maintain a library that users will pay for year-round, and even with an original content budget pegged at $8 billion for 2018 it has to spend wisely to ensure it’s producing content that plays as well in Canada as it does in Cameroon. Or, from another angle: Not even Netflix has the budget to invest heavily in hyperlocal content for Estonia.

对网飞公司野心勃勃的长远发展规划而言,再怎么强调 《怪奇物语》之类剧集“走出去”的重要性也不为过。流媒体库需要不断完善,用户才会愿意全年付费订阅, 即使网飞2018年拨给原创剧情的预算为80亿美元,也必须把这笔钱花在刀刃上,让影片在加拿大和在喀麦隆一样受欢迎。然而,从另一个角度来看,即使有钱如网飞,也没有足够的资金来为爱沙尼亚提供完全本土化的影视资源。

Peg : /pɛɡ/ to set prices, wages etc at a particular level, or set them in relation to something else. 固定 (价格、数量等)

 

Making movies or series that play well overseas depends to a certain extent on quality, of course, and Netflix has long maintained that geography is a poor indicator of what people will actually watch. But for a show like Stranger Things—which is an Emmy-nominated and critically-praised show in the US—to succeed abroad, Netflix has to translate its genius to as many markets as possible. Literally.

当然,电影或电视剧的海外反响一定程度上取决于作品本身的质量。网飞一直坚信,人们所处的地理位置不足以说明他们偏爱什么类型的电视节目。在美国国内广受好评的《怪奇物语》获得艾美奖提名,这样的美剧要想征服海外观众,网飞需要说明白它的超凡之处,尽可能地面向多国市场,做好翻译工作。

 

Found in Translation

译之有道

 

The world contains thousands of languages. Figuring out the proper translation for “Demogorgon” in each of them would be singularly impractical. But for the 20 languages in which Netflix does provide subtitles—and the large number in which it dubs shows—it sweats the small stuff.

世界上有上千种语言,不会每一种里都有“大魔王”(Demogorgon)一词的对应翻译。但光是用20种语言配字幕,并为其中大多数提供配音,就着实给网飞团队出了道难题。

Demogorgon : /ˌdiːməʊˈɡɔːɡən/ Demogorgon is a deity or demon, associated with the underworld and envisaged as a powerful primordial being, whose very name had been taboo. (From: Wikipedia)   魔王

 

That means the creation of a Key Names and Phrases tool, a sprawling spreadsheet in which teams of freelancers and vendors input translations in the name of consistency. Does the show include a fictional location? A catchphrase? A sci-fi item that has no real-world corollary? All those things go in the KNP, allowing Netflix to know how they read in Greek, Spanish, Swedish, Vietnamese, and so on.

这也就意味着他们要制作一个关键名称与短语的工具表,这是一个延展性的电子表格,由自由译者和合作团队不断输入扩充,保证翻译的一致性。剧中是否有虚构的地名?是否有金句?是否有一样只存在于科幻作品,而在现实世界不成立的东西?这些尽在翻译关键名称与短语的工具表中,网飞能够通过检索,查找英语在希腊语,西班牙语,瑞典语和越南语等语言中的对应说法。

Catchphrase: /ˈkætʃfreɪz/ a well-known sentence or phrase, especially one that is associated with a particular famous person. 名言; 流行口号

Corollary: /kəˈrɒləri/ (formal or technical 术语) a situation, an argument or a fact that is the natural and direct result of another one. 必然的结果(或结论)

 

Some translations are fairly straightforward; a university becomes a universidad for Spanish-language audiences, for example. Others, though, require substantially more legwork. Especially for a ’80s-reference-heavy series like Stranger Things that is fairly out of step with the present.

一些翻译很直接,如英语中“大学”一词就对应西班牙语中的“大学”,但是另外有一些词,需要充分进行资料搜集与研究。尤其是像《怪奇物语》这样一部带有浓重80年代印记的连续剧,今昔很多事不能同日而语。

 

Demogorgon is the big bad that the Stranger Things kids named after a Dungeons & Dragons demon prince. To ensure it transcended language barriers, Netflix dug into old Dungeons & Dragons materials to nail down how various cultures translated ‘Demogorgon’ in the mid-1970s. Similar efforts were made to track down decades-old marketing materials for, yes, Eggo waffles.

《怪奇物语》中,孩子们用“地下城与勇士”里恶魔王子的名字“大魔王”来命名大反派。网飞埋头在“地下城与勇士”的旧资料里找答案,想弄明白上个世纪七十年代中期,“大魔王”一词在各个文化中都是如何翻译的,这样才能跨越语言的障碍。同样地,网飞也下了一番苦工追溯几十年来Eggo华夫饼的宣传资料(译者注:家乐氏旗下的Eggo华夫饼在第一季中是超能力女主“十一”的最爱,出镜率颇高,但是品牌名无既定中文翻译),以供翻译参考之用。

 

“It’s a really deep dive into what are the elements of the story, what are the specifics of the story, that we need to make sure we are translating the same way that things were translated, say, 30 years ago,” says Denny Sheehan, the director of Netflix’s content localization and quality control efforts. “We compile all of that into essentially a show bible, and we give that to all of our translators, all of our dub studios, so they can reference that.”

网飞剧集本地化和质量管控部门负责人丹尼·希恩说:“我们得保证三十年前怎么翻,现在还怎么翻,所以就得深入故事情节,得抓细节。我们了一部影视大典,发给所有译者和配音工作室以供参考。”

Compile : /kəmˈpaɪl/  to produce a book, list, report, etc. by bringing together different items, articles, songs, etc. 编写,编撰

 

That focus on consistency goes beyond the words themselves to the voice actors saying them. Netflix says it looks for people who sound like the original cast but also, as Sheehan puts it, “embody the spirit of the character and tone.” No real surprise there. But the company also aims for voices that can work across titles. The actress who voices Winona Ryder’s Joyce Byers in Stranger Things, for instance, also provides the dubs for Lydia Deetz in Beetlejuice, and Mina Harker in Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

在一致性方面,网飞不仅关注书面翻译,还对配音演员有要求。网飞声称他们需要和原班人马声音相仿的配音演员,但同时也如希恩所说,“要体现人物的性格和口吻”。这也不足为奇。但是网飞也有意找为某一演员多个角色配音的“御用配音演员”,比如,在《怪奇物语》中,由薇诺娜·瑞德饰演乔伊斯·拜厄斯,她的配音演员也为她在《甲壳虫汁》 (译者注:蒂姆·波顿1988年的恐怖喜剧片)中的角色莉迪亚·迪兹,和她在布莱姆·斯托克( 译者注:爱尔兰著名小说家,吸血鬼文化的开山鼻祖)的作品《德古拉》中所饰演的米娜·哈克配音。

 

“We think of the subtitles and dubs as enabling access to the story,” Sheehan says. “Our goal is to use creative intent as the North Star, to really create culturally relevant and resonant translations for the continent that have a wide global appeal.”

希恩说:“字幕也好,配音也好,都拉近了观众与故事的距离。我们旨在以创作热情为指路星斗,真正做好与文化息息相关,能引发各国观众共鸣的翻译,使之在全球范围内都具有广泛吸引力。”


 

A Global Concern

That’s increasingly a business imperative as well.

吸引世界目光,越发成为商业发展的当务之急。

 

“Localization is very important internationally,” says Tony Gunnarsson, a streaming analyst with Ovum who follows Netflix closely. “European audiences are very familiar with US television and movies but the expectation is always to have local-language subtitles. This is a must-have everywhere.” Netflix has already reaped some of those gains, says Todd Yellin, the company’s VP of product innovation.

Ovum(译者注:一家在世界电信产业界富有权威性的中立咨询顾问公司)的流媒体分析师托尼·冈纳森一直跟进着网飞的动态,他说:“在全球范围而言,本地化至关重要。尽管欧洲观众对美剧和美国电影非常熟悉,他们还是希望能有本国语言的字幕,这是放之四海而皆准的道理。”网飞产品创新部门副总裁托德·耶林说,“网飞已经尝到了这样做的甜头。”

 

“Before you localize it, you have the early adopters who speak English well enough that they can use the service in those countries,” Yellin says. “But after you localize you see substantially more growth in those countries.”

“在本地化之前,其他国家英语水平过关的受众群体已经可以在本国看网飞剧。但是外国订阅用户数量有显著增长,还是在进行了本地化之后。”

 

Netflix’s global accommodations go beyond subtitles and dubs, of course. The company has advanced efforts in recent years to make its service more usable in emerging markets, countries where bandwidth may be limited or unreliable. That includes the recent introduction of downloadable content, which lets users grab an episode while on Wi-Fi to watch on the go.

当然,网飞的全球战略调整不仅限于字幕和配音。近年来,网飞在新兴市场的推广工作也在不断推进,这些国家的网络带宽可能受限或不稳定。于是网飞引进了可下载资源,用户在无线网络状态下可以缓存一集,之后即使没有Wifi也可以观看。

Bandwidth :  /ˈbændwɪdθ/ a measurement of the amount of information that a particular computer network or Internet connection can send in a particular time. It is often measured in bits per second. 带宽

 

“What we’re doing is trying to do things like, when people are watching over a cellular network, how to get better quality for fewer bits of data, how to avoid rebuffering in more challenging internet scenarios, like you often hit in India or Malaysia or the Philippines and so forth,” says Yellin. “Those markets are very important for the expansion of Netflix.”

耶林说:“我们试图为用手机网络看节目的观众提高画质,同时节省流量,为印度、马来西亚、菲律宾等网络条件不佳国家的用户省去缓冲,这些国家的市场对于网飞的扩张而言非常重要。”

 

Of course, those technological and linguistic solutions don’t mean much if it’s a show people don’t want to watch in the first place. It’s no accident that Netflix has a multi-series deal with Marvel, whose stable of comic book characters has built-in international cache. Or that this year it invested heavily in anime, a genre that demonstrably transcends both geography and demographics.

毋庸置疑,如果人们一开始压根就对一部剧不感兴趣的话,就算用技术和语言攻克了本地化问题也是白搭。漫威旗下一批漫画人物是全球观众播放列表里的常客,由此可见,网飞和漫威签下多个系列合约绝非偶然。今年网飞也花重金投资动漫,动漫体裁明显超越国界,受众不以人群划分。

Genre : /ˈʒɒnrə/ a particular type or style of literature, art, film or music that you can recognize because of its special features. 体裁,类型

 

As a Spielbergian genre throwback, Stranger Things seems similarly built for international success. The stars and creators may have been relative unknowns before the series debuted, but its tropes are universal. And it’s not just Spielberg; fans of David Lynch and Stand By Me will find familiar nuggets as well.

《怪奇物语》是斯皮尔伯格派的一次回归,也注定与其一样,有走红世界的体质。首映之前,演员和制作人相对而言名不见经传,但剧中走的还是常见套路。不光斯皮尔伯格,大卫·林奇粉和《伴我同行》粉也会发现一些似曾相识的亮点

Nugget : /ˈnʌɡɪt/ a small lump of gold or other precious metal found ready-formed in the earth. 小块东西(尤指小金块)

 

“My hunch is that the commercial success results from attracting several different audiences for each of which it is a cult show,” says Nigel Morris, author of The Cinema of Spielberg: Empire of Light and a film studies professor at the University of Lincoln. “All of the allusions make it a kind of interactive game as people ‘spot the references’, feel flattered by their ability to do so but also curious about those they realize they must be missing, and share them through social networking, together with speculation about what is going on and what the various clues might mean.”

斯皮尔伯格的电影:光影帝国》的作者,林肯大学电影研究教授奈杰尔·莫里斯说:“我的直觉告诉我,这部剧吸引了不同的观众群体,对他们每人而言,这都是部颠覆性的非主流之作,正应如此,《怪奇物语》取得了商业上的成功。剧中的各种暗示使它带有互动游戏的性质。人们在观影时寻找着蛛丝马迹,为自己能够发现剧中致敬的老片感到振奋,也为自己错过的发现而好奇。他们通过社交媒体分享心得,猜测情节走向和每个线索的含义。”

 

The result? A show that went viral first in Canada, and gradually spread to find enthusiasts around the world. In one month, Netflix users in 190 countries watched Stranger Things, and viewers in 70 of those nations became devoted fans. A handful of people tuned in from Bhutan, and from Chad. In a first for the streaming service, someone watched Season 1 in Antarctica.

结果如何?《怪奇物语》首先在加拿大爆红,接着席卷全球。一个月之内,190个国家的网飞用户观看了该剧,其中70国的观众成为死忠粉。也有来自不丹和乍得的少数用户收看该片。有人在南极收看了《怪奇物语》第一季,这在流媒体服务史上还是头一回。

Tune in : to listen to a radio programme or watch a television programme. 收看

 

Stranger Things, too, is just one show. The process repeats itself across thousands of hours of content. Netflix already made shows based on what the world wanted to watch; the hard part, now, is presenting it in a way that people can understand, no matter where they live or what language they speak.

《怪奇物语》也只是一部剧,和其他节目内容在制作工序上别无二致。网飞已经根据观众需求制作出了许多投其所好的剧集,现在更为棘手的是如何用人们可以理解的方式,将影视剧呈现在他们眼前,无论观众生活在何处,说着何种语言。


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