Marvel’s ‘Echo’ Will Have Choctaw Language Dub

Shannen Ace

Marvel’s ‘Echo’ Will Have Choctaw Language Dub

Marvel’s upcoming series “Echo” stars Native American actress Alaqua Cox as Maya Lopez, a member of the Choctaw Nation. The “Echo” creative team worked closely with the Choctaw Nation on the series and will be releasing a Choctaw language dub of the five episodes.

“Echo” Choctaw Language Dub

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Zahn McClarnon, Devery Jacobs, Graham Greene, and Tantoo Cardinal in ‘Echo.’ CHUCK ZLOTNICK, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY

Marvel collaborated with the Choctaw Nation on the show’s scripts, history, costumes, and characters.

“In the process of working and collaborating with the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, in working with the Choctaw language experts and consultants, it became very apparent that we needed to do a dub in Choctaw as well,” director Sydney Freeland told Entertainment Weekly. “And we’re incredibly proud of it.” 

EW shared a video with clips from “Echo” as well as behind-the-scenes footage from filming the show and recording the Choctaw dub.

“Placing the story of Echo in the actual Choctaw language helps make our character more authentic to her heritage, because we get to delve into the specifics of Choctaw culture and traditions,” Freeland said. “I’m indigenous, I’m American, but I’m Navajo. And the Choctaw language and the Navajo language are completely different from each other; they’re as different as Portuguese and Polish. And so one of the things that was important for us was making sure that we had people who were experts in Choctaw language. But a lot of really great things came out of that collaboration — specifically, in the second episode of our series, we actually get to see a portion of pre-European contact America that I can genuinely say has never been seen on film before. That came as a direct result of our collaboration with the Choctaw Nation in trying to tell a more authentic story.”

Consultant Terry Billy told EW, “I became a translator for my grandmother, who didn’t speak English, beginning at a young age.  I’ve lived a life of interpreting the world from English to Choctaw. The crisis of tribal language loss has heightened my purpose in exploring opportunities to provide many avenues to attract new language learners and preserve the language in all its aspects from spirituality to social conversations.”

Billy said that incorporating the Choctaw language and demonstrating how it’s spoken makes “Echo” a learning resource.

“The most important aspect of translating from English to Choctaw is to get as close to the intended verbiage or context,” Billy said. “However, when that is not possible, ‘interpreting’ in everyday Choctaw then becomes the path to fulfill the context. Allowing us to express the story from our language perspective with its cultural connotations made this project very meaningful.” 

maya lopez echo

All five episodes of “Echo” will stream on Disney+ and Hulu beginning on January 9, 2024. The series is TV-MA and the first under Marvel Studios’ “Marvel Spotlight” banner that focuses on grounded, character-driven stories instead of the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe. Watch the latest teaser:

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Author

  • Shannen Ace

    Shannen has been a Disney Parks fan and lover of dogs since childhood, despite Pluto's attempt to eat Shannen's Minnie Mouse doll the first time they met. They've made up now. You can email Shannen at shannen@wdwnt.com.

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