Entertainment Translation Services

Lights, camera, translation!
Entertainment translation goes beyond a transfer of languages. It is a transfer of emotions, cultures, and lived experiences. Our linguists understand the importance of authenticity and artistic integrity when it comes to entertainment content.
What is entertainment translation?
Entertainment translation refers to the practice of translating and localizing entertainment content, including movies, TV shows, podcasts, promotional materials, etc. It often involves translating subtitles and scripts for dubbing. The most commonly requested is likely subtitle translation as it makes entertainment content accessible and enjoyable to international audiences.
What are the challenges of subtitle translation?
Translating subtitles requires linguistic proficiency, cultural competence, and unique creativity in order to preserve the meaning and impact of the original content while still ensuring that the translation resonates with the target audience. Navigating the complexities of subtitle translation proves to be challenging for several reasons.
The translated subtitles must fit within the allotted space and time frame.
Most of the time, subtitles are limited to two lines of text. Media giants such as Netflix have strict guidelines requiring that each line does not exceed 42 characters, with the reading speed not exceeding 17 characters per second for adult programs and 13 characters for children’s programs.
This can be particularly difficult when factoring in the nature of the source and target languages. The subtitle length may expand up to 40% when translating content from English into most European languages. As a result, subtitlers likely have to reduce the length by omitting some elements.
Such a strategy further raises the question of which elements must be translated and which could be condensed or removed to save space. Generally, elements that are important to the plot should be maintained. But in reality, this is left to the discretion of each subtitler.
Subtle yet important details may be lost in translation.
People have their own way of using vocabulary and grammar when communicating with each other. Such distinctive communication styles and speech patterns are important forms of personal expression. In entertainment media, how a person speaks is often used to express their unique personality, upbringing, and motivations.
Unfortunately, transferring these linguistic subtleties into another language is not an easy task. To comply with time and space restrictions, translated subtitles may lose some shades of meaning, which inadvertently causes plot holes.
For example, in the movie Donnie Brasco, the main character, Joe Pistone, was an FBI agent who had to pretend to be a criminal in order to take down a mafia group.
When asked what he was running from, Joe said: “I ain’t running from nothin”– definitely not how an educated FBI agent from a middle-upper class background should talk.
The scene took place during his conversation with his wife and their marriage counselor. He did not have any reason to use this type of speaking, yet he did it unconsciously, to the dismay of his wife. This is important to the plot as it shows how Joe was starting to adopt the way mobsters spoke, losing himself in the process of his mission.
The Chinese subtitle for this line simply says “我没逃避什么”,which means I’m not running away from anything. Despite being a correct translation, the Chinese subtitle uses proper language and thus, cannot convey the implications of the source text.
There may not be any direct equivalents for certain cultural references.
Cultural elements such as local customs, events, or famous figures of one culture may not be widely known in other cultures. In this case, the translators need to either provide explanations or adapt the references in a way that makes sense to the viewers.
For example, in the American comedy-drama series M*A*S*H, Colonel Flagg, a US Army intelligence officer, was explaining how he trained himself to refrain from laughing:
I watched a hundred hours of The Three Stooges. Every time I felt like smiling, I jabbed myself in the stomach with a cattle prod.”
When translated into Danish, the subtitle says:
Jeg sa˚ Gøg og Gokke film i 100 timer.
This essentially means “I watch Laurel and Hardy for 100 hours.
The reference to The Three Stooges was changed to Laurel and Hardy. While The Three Stooges was a famous comedy group in the US, they were not known in Scandinavia. Therefore, the Scandinavian audience would not know why watching The Three Stooges helped the character with his anti-laughing training.
The Danish subtitler made an ingenious change, replacing The Three Stooges with Laurel and Hardy, a comedy duo from the same time as The Three Stooges but well known in Scandinavia during the time the series M*A*S*H was set in. Thanks to this adaptation, the subtitle became relevant to its audience.
Content types
Our solutions
When it comes to entertainment translation, Thao & Co. understands how important it is to capture the essence of your original content while effectively localizing it to new audiences. Our linguists are ready to deliver high-quality works for subtitle translation, creative translation, voice overs, and other translation services to bring your entertainment projects to life.
What is an .SRT file and why do I need it?
An .SRT file contains the script of your video divided by subtitle line, along with other important information such as timecodes and sometimes, sound effects.
When you have an entertainment translation project, having an .SRT file is extremely helpful as it lightens the workload for subtitlers. They can start translating immediately without having to create all the timecodes. As a result, your project will be completed much faster and at a significantly lower fee.
How to add an .SRT file to a video?
To watch a video with your .SRT file, simply copy it to the same folder as the video and rename it to match the video name. Most video players (such as Windows Media Player, VLC, or GOM) will automatically load your .SRT file into your video without any hassle.
To post a video to YouTube, Facebook, or Linkedin with subtitles ready for your audience, first, upload your video. Then, attach your .SRT file in the Video Settings and click Save!
For any subtitle translation project, Thao & Co. are happy to walk you through how to add your translated subtitles to your video. If you would like your final product to be a video with built-in subtitles, we can also hardcode the translated subtitles to your video however you prefer it.
How much does subtitle translation cost for an entertainment project?
Generally, our pricing for subtitle translation services is based on a per-minute rate. This rate is determined by many factors.
First, do you have the script (.srt file, for example) available for us to translate? If not, we will need to create subtitles from scratch, which adds to our efforts, delivery time, and service fee.
In addition, the source and target languages, as well as the volume of your project also contribute to how much your project will cost.
Head over to our Get a Quote page and leave information about your subtitle project to get a free estimation of your project fee and delivery timeline!
Do you provide narration for podcasts and audiobooks or voice acting for video games?
Yes. Thao & Company provides a wide range of localization services for entertainment content, including voice overs, narration, and voice acting. Please head over to our Voice Overs page for more details, or leave your project information on our Get a Quote page. We will get back to you as soon as we can.
Do you provide interpretation for live concerts, events, or festivals?
Yes. Thao & Company works with native linguists who are highly experienced in interpreting live concerts, festivals, and other entertainment events. Our team of expert entertainment interpreters will ensure all your guests have a great time enjoying the true spirit of your event to the fullest!
Please head over to our Interpretation page for more details, or leave your project information on our Get a Quote page. We will get back to you as soon as we can.
What is transcreation?
Transcreation blends translation with creativity, ensuring that your original content not only is conveyed accurately but also resonates with your new audiences.
In the entertainment industry, transcreation is essential to guarantee the success of your movies, games, or any work of art. From trailers to posters and any promotional materials, transcreation delivers an authentic and immersive entertainment experience to capture the heart of any audience.
What are Netflix subtitling standards? Should my videos follow them?
As an entertainment giant, Netflix provides detailed subtitle guidelines to ensure the quality of their subtitles across all countries. While it is not required to follow Netflix subtitling standards down to a T, their guidelines do offer useful instructions to optimize viewing experience.
At Thao & Company, we have our own subtitle guidelines that are in line with Netflix’s as well as specific guidelines for each entertainment subtitling project per clients’ request. We can tailor your subtitles to your preferences. Head over to our Subtitles page for more details, or leave your project information on our Get a Quote page and we will get back to you as soon as we can!

Our Services

Translation + Proofreading

App + Software + Website + Game Translation

Text + Document Translation

Certified + Notarized Translation

Technical Translation

Creative Translation

General Translation



Voice Overs

If your company does business globally, quality translations are a necessity. Look to Thao & Co. for expert translation & proofreading of your technical manuals, sales materials, websites, business plans and legal documents. Our professional linguists have impeccable translation skills to help world-leading brands grow their international business.
If you’re ready to take your app, software or game global or you want your website to attract international customers, you’ll need to modify the content for your new target audience. Look to Thao & Co. for expert translation and localization, while preserving the design and layout of the original. Give your customers a positive digital experience. Our linguists are native professional translators who help brands big and small grow their international business.
If your company does business globally, quality translations are a necessity. Look to Thao & Co. for expert translation of any text or documents in most file formats and delivered in the same design-layout as your original source material. Our linguists are native professional translators who help world-leading brands grow their international business.
Certain situations call for a translation to be certified and/or notarized, from immigration documents to service agreements, wills, and court documents, etc. Thao&Co. makes it easy for you to obtain different types of translation and authentication in one fast, convenient process. Whether it’s a government document like a passport, a death certificate, a court transcript, a business contract, or a marriage certificate, we’ll handle all the details to precisely meet your requirements.
For materials dealing with science or technological subject areas, you need technical translation services. Thao & Co. can translate specialized texts that require a high level of subject knowledge and mastery of the relevant terminology. Upon request, we’ll do industry terms research pre-translation and have industry experts review the translated content for accuracy post-translation. Whether for a user manual, software program, a scientific report or a patent, look to Thao & Co. to translate your most complicated technical documents.
Creative translation typically refers to the translation of marketing materials. Whereas verbatim translation works for a business or legal document, creative translation may include consideration for cultural nuances and clever wordplay, which can help make a marketing piece more effective. Thao & Co. offers creative translation that accurately conveys the message and tone of the original but does so with imaginative flair designed to resonate with your target audience.
Thao & Co. offers general translation services, which are ideal for non-specialized text that doesn’t contain industry-specific terminology. For this type of work, the translator doesn’t need extensive industry knowledge or experience in a specific subject area. Items for general translation may include meeting minutes, memos, surveys, blog posts, business letters, and job applications.
Get more value from your audio and video recordings with our transcription services. We offer personalized transcriptions by skilled humans, not machines, for superior accuracy. Enjoy fast turnarounds for transcribed meetings, calls, interviews, lectures, podcasts, videos and more!
If videos are a part of your communication plan, consider adding subtitles. Subtitles increase accessibility, engagement and comprehension. Additionally, many people prefer to watch videos without sound when in public. Our subtitling service includes high-quality, human-generated subtitles for videos, movies, TV, educational programs, marketing materials and video games. Translated subtitles are also available for added fee.
Great videos need equally great voice overs. Audio can make or break a presentation. We provide voice over talent in multiple languages for commercials, explainer videos, eLearning, audio books, video games and more!
Communicate across language barriers in real-time with our on-site, video and phone interpretation solutions. Our skilled linguists are able to interpret speeches, meetings, legal proceedings and informal conversations into your preferred language.
Our technologies
To ensure quality translations and expedient service, Thao & Company has invested in the latest translation technology.
Our Platform
We’ve developed a proprietary platform that keeps your projects organized, facilitates interaction with your translation team and allows you to monitor the progress of our work. We’re continually upgrading and innovating on that platform to make it even more convenient for you and our linguists to create quality translations.
Our ChatBoxⒸ
Communicate your requirements to the translation team and provide feedback throughout the process with our easy-to-use ChatBoxⒸ feature.
To deliver consistency, speedy turnarounds and cost savings on your projects, we use Trados to create a customized glossary of terms pulled directly from your documents.
SEO tools
Working with these tools, we generate keyword translations for your project’s glossary, ensuring your translated content is optimized for Google search.
Integration technologies
We’re experienced with most programming languages including Python, JavaScript, C++, PHP, etc. and Content Management Systems (CMS) such as WordPress, Drupal, Joomla and Magento. We can help integrate the translation into your system, which is especially convenient if you don’t have an in-house IT team.
Design Software
After we translate marketing materials, such as brochures or ads, we work with designers to adjust the layout and make sure everything looks good and is ready to print.
Our languages
Bahasa Indonesia
Our industries
We provide accurate translations of items such as clinical instructions, medical records, articles, product labels and questionnaires.
Advertising + Marketing
Get your message across in any language when we translate your informational materials, instructions and simple promotional content.
Banking + Finance
As you tap new markets, we can translate sales materials, emails, job applications, CVs, legal documents, and entire banking/trading platforms and apps.
Get fast, precise translation of legal documents, contracts, memos, emails and other forms of communication.
Real Estate + Construction
Our translators have sufficient familiarity with architecture, construction, real estate and civil engineering to help translate relevant documents.
Retail + E-commerce
If you’re selling to global markets, let us translate your sales materials, company announcements and meeting minutes for your international partners.
Travel + Tourism
We can provide general translation of content for internal communications and customer-facing text for hotels, restaurants, travel guides and more.
Relying on our experience translating films, plays and commercials, we give careful attention to word selection and meaning in every project.
Automotive + Aerospace
Look to our specialized linguists to translate and localize user guides, CAD drawings, repair manuals and business contracts.
Get precise translation of technical terminology whether for instructions, safety, quality control or regulatory compliance.
Explore new markets for your games once we translate the rules, instructions, storyline, dialog, graphics and technical details.
Empower global education with our translation and localization services. Available for academic transcripts, diplomas, degrees, certificates, websites, apps, and more.
Our expert localization services are here to get your tech materials, websites, apps, software and other digital products into new markets.
Ready to take the next step? Tell us about your project.

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