OHIO – Today I had the pleasure of interviewing an iconic star, Charles Martinet, the voice of the little red plumber, Mario from Nintendo, he settled an internet fight on when and what game gave him his start that launched a lifelong career.
During an interview at TORG (Ohio Retro Gamer) convention, Martinet talked about his start as the voice of Mario, but even more importantly his shaping of an iconic character.
“When I tried out for the part I didn’t really know the character too well, said Martinet almost embarrassedly, ” but they wanted a gruff New York Plumber and a friend of mine knew I could do that part, but as I was going into the interview I thought, this needs to be softened some, this part is for kids.”
According to Martinet, and his years of work, he nailed the audition, he soon would start working and recording his first scrips for Nintendos Mario. The next part is where the lines get a little grey and internet experts have argued, “What was the first game of Mario’s voice?” Martinet said that there were two games that were produced in 1995, one that was first but the other was the one Martinet says helped mold Mario into the fun-loving character that he is today.
Two games, “Mario’s Game Gallery and Mario Teaches Typing” were Martinet first games, according to the actor, both he produced voice acting for at the same time, but one was released first Mario’s Game Gallery which was released in February 1995, Mario Teaches Typing was released in May, but the latter is most fond of.
When Martinet spoke of Mario Teaches Typing a smile came over his face, he said, “When I got the script for the game, and read it for the first time there were lines in the script that said, “you failed,” or “That wasn’t very good, That was bad.” Martinet explained that he talked to the studio and asked if he could adjust some lines, because he didn’t like the negative from Mario, especially because of kids. The producer allowed the changes.
As Martinet told this story today he bursted out that line he was most proud of that came from his heart. “Oh! That was good, but I know you can do better!” “Oh Nice one, but let’s try again!” Martinet explained that he always wanted Mario to be a positive, uplifting, role model for kids. “We should be joyful and loving to each other.”
Over the years, Mario and Martinet became as one, and I believe that Mario took on the personality of Martinet and became that positive iconic character that we all have come to love. In August Martinet retired from voice acting and has moved to Mario Ambassador, but I don’t believe that Mario and Martinet can ever really be separated after this interview.