Super Mario Bros. Wonder introduces Kevin Afghani as Mario and Luigi

Kevin Afghani is the new voice of Mario and Luigi, taking over from veteran voice actor, Charles Martinet.
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Since Nintendo announced the retirement of veteran Mario and Luigi voice actor Charles Martinet, fans have speculated about the identity of his successor. Super Mario Bros. Wonder was quickly identified as the debut game for the new actor, with Martinet confirming his lack of involvement – but Nintendo was surprisingly tight-lipped about who would step into Mario’s big, brown shoes.

Now, we know who it is – Kevin Afghani, an emerging newcomer in the voice acting scene. Afghani previously voiced Arnold in the English dub of HoYoverse’s Genshin Impact, and also voiced Raditz in a fan-made Dragon Ball spin-off titled R&R.

“Incredibly proud to have voiced Mario and Luigi in Super Mario Bros. Wonder,” Afghani revealed on Twitter. “Thanks to Nintendo for inviting me into the Flower Kingdom!”

The announcement arrived after several days of heated debate around the identity of the new voice actor for Mario and Luigi, with multiple names, reportedly taken from the credits of a Super Mario Bros. Wonder demo, being thrown around.

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Afghani’s name was in the conversation alongside a number of others – most notably, Mick Wingert, who was initially assumed to be playing Mario and Luigi based on his experience and voice samples. As speculation mounted, Wingert confirmed he was not playing those roles, leading to even more confusion.

It’s likely Nintendo granted permission for Afghani to confirm his involvement following these discussions, as debate raged online.

With grand reveals like this, there’s usually a strong element of secrecy to protect developers and contributors. Martinet being such a beloved figure in the Nintendo community may have also led to a necessary silence about his successor – to protect them from potential backlash following the shock of his departure.

With the furore around this decision now quieting down, Afghani is largely free to celebrate his new role, and his future with Nintendo. Over on Twitter, fans of the franchise have congratulated the voice actor for taking over such an iconic role, with the sentiment towards his performance and inclusion being refreshingly positive.

Super Mario Bros. Wonder, which marks the debut of Kevin Afghani as Mario and Luigi, launches for Nintendo Switch on 20 October 2023.

Super Mario Bros. Wonder : Standard - Nintendo Switch [Digital Code]
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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.