Movies and TV series are an integral part of modern entertainment. For many people it’s a favourite way of spending free time thanks to the variety of topics, convenience of use and easy availability, which can be obtained in many ways – through streaming platforms, going to the cinema or watching TV.

Transcription and translating of dialogue lists play a key role in distributing a movie or a TV series among wide range of audience, as well as in increasing the availability of those culture resources for the general public.

Dialogue lists – transcription and translating

Dialogue lists – the role of translation

Dialogue lists are transcripts of dialogues between characters, which are shown on the screen as subtitles, or read by a voice-over. Because of that, translations of dialogue lists are extremely important, and their realization is more demanding than it may seem. Knowledge of a language is not enough for a translation to be well done. Apart from the ability to translate sentences of dialogues, an ability of reading and recognizing the cultural aspect by a translator is needed. Only when the translator reads the emotions, tone of voice and style of speech correctly will he or she be able to appropriately put into words and convey the same thing that the character had in mind. Sometimes translating a certain expression is quite impossible, because it makes sense only in a given language. Then, the translator must find a way to create a message appropriate for the given culture, while keeping as much of the authenticity as possible.

Role of transcription

Transcription of dialogue lists is a process of transferring the dialogues of the character onto paper. At his stage, it’s important to be as precise as possible and pay attention to cultural aspect of dialogues. It’s crucial, because even the smallest detail can completely change the context and understanding of the speech and, in consequence, the whole situation. While transcribing, not only listening skills in the transcribed language are important, but also writing skills – especially orthography and punctuation. Mistakes in spelling can lead to understanding a word as a completely different than the one in the original version. Punctuation in transcription helps to put emphasis on a sentence and, as a result, read it in an appropriate tone of voice and make pauses where a break for catching one’s breath is needed.

Transcription of dialogue lists is key in the whole process of translating movies and TV series, and this procedure can be called an art of conveying and keeping the authenticity of the translated speech.

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