Charles Martinet “Stepping Back” From Voicing Mario

Charles Martinet Photo

Nintendo has announced that Mario’s original voice actor Charles Martinet is “stepping back” from recording character voices in its games.

Working for Nintendo since 1991, the 67-year-old started voicing the moustachioed Italian plumber at video game trade shows, Super Mario Bros. pinball arcade machine, Mario Teaches Typing and Mario’s Game Gallery leading to the character’s personality-packed appearance in the landmark Super Mario 64.

In 2018, Martinet was awarded a Guinness World Records title for the Most videogame voiceover performances as the same character and, most recently, lent his voice to Mario’s father in The Super Mario Bros. Movie.

“Charles Martinet has been the original voice of Mario in Nintendo games for a long time, as far back as Super Mario 64. Charles is now moving into the brand new role of Mario Ambassador,” Nintendo confirmed in a statement.

“With this transition, he will be stepping back from recording character voices for our games, but he’ll continue to travel the world sharing the joy of Mario and interacting with you all!

“It has been an honour working with Charles to help bring Mario to life for so many years and we want to thank and celebrate him. Please keep an eye out for a special video message from Shigeru Miyamoto and Charles himself, which we will post at a future date.”

Immediately sharing his reaction to the news, Martinet added: “My new Adventure begins! You are all Numba One in my heart! Woohoo!!!!!!!”

That Nintendo stated that Martinet is “stepping back from recording character voices” means that he will also no longer be the voice behind other characters, including Luigi, Wario, Waluigi and their baby characters.

It is unclear what plan is in place to replace him and whether that has already happened for Super Mario Bros. Wonder, which will release for Nintendo Switch around the world on 20 October 2023.

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