The LA Times has a fun piece called 10 thing you may not know about Masi Oka, the guy who plays Hiro in Heroes—one of my favorite shows. Oka plays a Japanese otaku who can time travel in the series, but he’s actually Japanese-American. Did you know he translates all his own dialogue in Heroes? He says:
It’s important to me to translate the English dialogue in a way that I
think Hiro would say it. A formal translator would make it too rigid
and not colloquial. I’ve been tempted (to sneak in a Japanese curse word) but I’d
never get away with it. I have sometimes mis-translated things on
purpose when we’re shooting and then there’s one person laughing — the
Japanese language coach we work with. So yeah, I’d get caught.
I think that’s so great! Hiro is best known for putting both arms in the air and saying: "Yattaaa!!" When he does something cool, like saving the world from mass destruction. It’s nice to know that it’s genuine.