Saying that a character was brought to life is common in the english speaking world of movies to describe characters being made more human and real through acting or scripting. In Japanese, how would this phrase be best translated, or approximated to Japanese?

My current attempt has been


But, I can't tell if it's right given that it seems too literal and close to the English for my comfort. Can anybody confirm if this is right, or if not, what the best equivalent in Japanese would be?

  • Sorry if I'm missing what you're asking, but you mean something like "Robert Downy Jr. really brings Iron Man to life with his witty character banter"?
    – istrasci
    Aug 3, 2015 at 18:15
  • 3
    生命 tends to technically refer to 'life' in the biological sense. A phrase "命をもたらす" exists, but almost all of the examples using this phrase seem to refer to biological 'life', too (e.g. "太陽は地球に命をもたらす", "永遠の命をもたらす伝説の果実").
    – naruto
    Aug 3, 2015 at 19:21
  • @istrasci, yes, that's the exact type of thing i mean
    – sqrtbottle
    Aug 5, 2015 at 8:45

2 Answers 2


命を吹き込む is what I have heard the most.


生き生きと + 描く・描き出す would work. In place of 生き生きと you could use 鮮やかに, 人物像を見事に, etc., as well.

  • 3
    BTW, 生命にもたらされた doesn't work, because you translated "brought to life" literally, word for word, and as with many set phrases, resulting combination in Japanese unfortunately makes no sense. People may say, e.g., ・(地球に)生命もたらされた時 "when life was brought to Earth" ・キリストを受け入れたことで永遠の生命もたらされた "received (was given) an eternal life by accepting Christ" ・突然新たな生命もたらされた初老の夫婦 "an aging couple in whose life suddenly a new life (baby) was brought" and so on. Collocation of 生命に + もたらされる just sounds odd. Aug 4, 2015 at 20:34
  • @user224579 命を吹き込む to me sounds more relevant to 絵画・仏像 or any (usually artistic) object that 1) hasn't quite been completed, missing the last touch that breathes life into it, or 2) has been forgotten or has lost its ancient splendor, when something is being done to (re-)breathe life into it. Its nearly synonymous 四字熟語: 画竜点睛(がりょうてんせい) See original story (This is how Japanese high school students learn the origin of this expression in classical Chinese. FWIW.) Aug 5, 2015 at 3:53

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