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Entertainment9 months agoTimothy "Timaugustin" Augustin

Nintendo confirms that Mario's longtime voice actor is stepping down

Image: Charles Martinet, X

Charles Martinet voiced the iconic plumber for three decades. 

Longtime Mario voice actor Charles Martinet will no longer voice the iconic Nintendo mascot in future Super Mario games, according to Nintendo itself. Nintendo announced that Martinet would step down from his three-decade-long tenure as Mario to become the company’s official ‘Mario Ambassador’, who will, “travel the world sharing the joy of Mario.”

It’s the end of an era. Martinet not only voiced Mario across three decades of Super Mario games, but other characters in the franchise like Wario and Luigi. He also voiced variants of the Mario brothers, including Waluigi, Baby Mario, Baby Luigi, Metal Mario and more. On the big change, Nintendo said that, “It has been an honor working with Charles for so many years and we want to thank and celebrate him,” with a future video message featuring Martinet and the creator of Mario himself, Shigeru Miyamoto coming sometime soon. 

In reply to the announcement, Martinet tweeted, “My new Adventure begins! You are all Numba One in my heart!” This decision seems to have been made a long time ago on Nintendo’s side, as the company has confirmed that upcoming games like Super Mario Bros. Wonder and WarioWare: Move It will feature new voices for Mario, Luigi and Wario. 

Nintendo’s announcement did not clarify if Martinet is retiring from the role of his own accord, or if the company had decided to recast him - but perhaps the upcoming video from Miyamoto and Martinet will be less vague about the circumstances surrounding his departure. Both parties seem to be on good terms with each other still, as Martinet will continue to champion Mario for the foreseeable future under the company. 

Martinet’s first performance as the iconic Italian plumber Mario Mario (yes, that actually is his full name) was in the CD-ROM version of Mario Teaches Typing in 1994. He was cemented as the definitive Mario voice in 1996’s Super Mario 64 however, and has continued to voice the character in gaming up until last year’s Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope. He appeared as a cameo in the Super Mario Bros. Movie this year, but Chris Pratt voiced the plumber instead. 

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Timothy "Timaugustin" AugustinTim loves movies, TV shows and videogames almost too much. Almost.

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