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Charles Martinet: Original voice of Mario in Nintendo games steps down after 27 years

The original voice of Mario in Nintendo’s video games is stepping down.

Charles Martinet has been in the role for 27 years – dating back to Super Mario 64 in 1996.

He also provided the voices of Mario’s twin brother Luigi, and their nemesis Wario.

Nintendo has now announced that Charles will take on the brand-new role of “Mario ambassador”.

The Japanese video game giant said: “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.”

Posting on X, formerly known as Twitter, Martinet wrote: “My new adventure begins! You are all Numba One in my heart!”

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The 67-year-old added the hashtag “#woohoo” – one of Mario’s signature catchphrases.

In 2019, the American actor won the Guinness World Record for the most video game voiceover performances as the same character: 104 at the time.

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Martinet didn’t star as the Italian plumber in The Super Mario Bros Movie, with Chris Pratt taking on the part, but did have a small role as his father Giuseppe.

At a Canadian gaming expo two years ago, Martinet told the crowd that he wanted to voice Mario “until I drop dead” – but said he would urge Nintendo to find someone else if he was no longer capable of doing it.

It’s unclear who will succeed Martinet in the role, with Super Mario Bros. Wonder – the next game in the series – set to be released in October.

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