Longtime Mario voice actor Charles Martinet is stepping down

Charles Martinet will officially move into an ambassador role for Nintendo.
super mario charles martinet

Charles Martinet, the voice actor who has portrayed Mario in Nintendo video games since 1996’s Super Mario 64, is officially stepping down from the role. The new was shared by Nintendo of America on Twitter, in a post encouraging players to celebrate Martinet’s legacy, and his next steps.

Going forward, the actor will move into a ‘Mario Ambassador’ role where he will continue to travel to Nintendo events ‘sharing the joy of Mario and interacting with [fans]’ – but he will not voice the character in future.

‘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,’ Nintendo said. In future, the company will share a video message from Martinet and Shigeru Miyamoto.

In reply to the announcement, Martinet expressed enthusiasm for his next steps. ‘My new adventure begins!’ he tweeted. ‘You are all Numba One in my heart! #woohoo’

Read: The Super Mario Bros. Movie hits US $1 billion globally

The timing of the announcement aligns with the upcoming release of Super Mario Bros. Wonder, the latest 3D game in the long-running franchise. When the initial trailer for this game released, there was much speculation that Martinet had been replaced, as Mario’s voice sounded different.

In a statement to IGN, Nintendo has now confirmed that Martinet will not be part of this upcoming adventure, with Mario being played by a mystery actor. For now, the developer is not ready to reveal who is voicing the character, but it’s likely we’ll learn more in the coming weeks.

Notably, Martinet was also recently replaced as the voice of Mario for the blockbuster film adaptation of Super Mario Bros. While he appeared in the film as both Mario and Luigi’s dad, and a character named Guiseppe, actor Chris Pratt voiced Mario in his place.

After 27 years in the spotlight, Martinet will now formally step back from his iconic role. He leaves a long-lasting legacy in the world of video games that will be celebrated for years to come. Stay tuned to hear more about Martinet’s new role, and what’s next for the Mario franchise.

The latest game in the series, Super Mario Bros. Wonder, launches on 20 October 2023.

Leah J. Williams is a gaming and entertainment journalist who's spent years writing about the games industry, her love for The Sims 2 on Nintendo DS and every piece of weird history she knows. You can find her tweeting @legenette most days.