Creating a Demo
I have a friend who wants to be a voice actor. He's in the process of creating a demo, but he doesn't know what should go into a demo. When FUNI looks at demos, what do you look for? Do you want demos of commercials that he has done, or would it be better to have a demo where he does voice overs for several anime characters ?
First and Foremost, is your friend an actor? A commercial demo is always nice, but they need to demonstrate versatility as an actor first. If they can sing too, that's a plus. To be a Voice Actor, they need to be an ACTOR first. Take a few Drama or Comedy Classes, Acting Workshops, get up on the Stage if possible. Once he gains enough experience and confidence under his belt, THEN he can create a Demo. IIRC, a Commercial Demo must demonstrate a wide variety of ranges within a specific time limit, because an audition process for a studio is usually quick. Sometimes studios don't even have time to audition at all. Funimation hardly does nowadays, for example.
I would suggest doing an abridged series or auditioning for a separate medium, like an Indie Video Game or something. Build up your resume first before applying. Because if you try to send a demo to Funimation directly before you're ready, they will turn you away very easily.
(I've been looking into this because I too want to become a Voice Actor, so all the knowledge i'm imparting onto you and your friend comes from Professional VAs.)
A commercial demo is fine, just have the talent and experience to back it up first. If he did voiceovers for anime characters, Unless they're for abridged series or for anime that has never been dubbed, DO NOT SUBMIT IT! BECAUSE IMPRESSIONS WILL NOT GET YOU INTO FUNIMATION!!!
I'm not trying to discourage you or anything, and I apologize if I seem so, but I'm just being real with you. If you do go through with a Commercial Demo, I would suggest getting it checked out by a professional first, like Chris Guerrero or Sound Cadence Studios (Though the Latter is VERY Expensive). They can give you pointers on how you can improve your reel.
Make sure to invest as much time and money as you can into the craft, because Voice Acting, let alone Acting in General, is VERY Competitive!
One more thing, Move to where the work is. You could be successful in submitting your demo, but it means nothing if you're unavailable to work.
I hope I answered your questions as best as I can. If I missed something, or if there is anything else you want to know, let me know.