After voicing Mario for the past 27 years, Charles Martinet will no longer be playing the character, Nintendo announced in a tweet this morning. He'll be moving on to a newly created "Mario Ambassador" role where he'll "continue to travel the world sharing the joy of Mario," the company said. There's no word about a replacement voice actor yet. Nintendo also announced that there will be a special video message featuring Martinet and Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto coming in the future.
We have a message for fans of the Mushroom Kingdom. Please take a look. pic.twitter.com/U1ASicOuTO
— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) August 21, 2023
While most players likely encountered Martinet's work in Mario 64, he was initially hired in 1991 to voice the plumber's interactive 3D model at trade shows. He also played the character in 1994's Mario Teaches Typing, as well as the 1992 Mario pinball game. After his work in Mario 64, Martinet also brought his talents to Luigi, Wario, Waluigi and several other Nintendo characters over the years. Notably, he only had a few cameo roles in the recent Super Mario Bros. Movie, where Mario himself was voiced by Chris Pratt.
It's unclear which game will be Martinet's last as Mario, but Nintendo has confirmed to Kotaku that he is not involved in the upcoming Super Mario Bros. Wonder, which is set to be released on October 20th. Fans were already speculating that the mascot's voice sounds different in early footage of both Wonder and WarioWare: Move It.
Update 1:51PM ET: This article was modified after publication to include Kotaku's confirmation that Martinet will not be voicing Mario in the upcoming game Super Mario Bros. Wonder.