Mark Hamill Shares Sweet Birthday Message For Darth Vader Actor

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James Earl Jones turned 88 on January 17th and as one of the most highly regarded actors working today, he received a torrent of warm wishes from his friends and co-stars in the industry. But perhaps the most touching was Mark Hamill’s.

After all, while the pair have never actually shared a cinema screen in person, their Star Wars performances as Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, respectively, are intertwined as some of the most iconic in movie history. And so, describing Jones as “one of the world’s greatest actors,” Hamill posted this tweet containing four interesting pictures:

If you’ve ever heard Darth Vader’s original voice (the goofy Westcountry tones of David Prowse), you’ll know that without James Earl Jones contributing that rumbling, ominous bass to the part, the entire franchise might never have gotten off the ground. Since the Original Trilogy, Jones has continued to appear as Vader whenever possible, reprising the role in Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars Rebels and most famously in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. There are persistent (but in my view unlikely) rumors that Vader will somehow pop up in Star Wars: Episode IX as well, so if that does happen, expect to hear Jones one more time.

Of course, Vader wasn’t his only iconic voice acting role. He also famously played Mufasa in 1994’s The Lion King, embodying the character with gravitas and nobility, making his death absolutely heartbreaking. While the rest of the cast has changed, Jon Favreau sensibly realized that you simply don’t recast Mufasa, so come this summer, you’ll once more be hearing Jones ruling Pride Rock in the upcoming remake.

Anyways, I’m happy to join Mark Hamill in wishing Jones a very happy 88th birthday. Here’s hoping he’s got many iconic performances ahead of him, and it’d be lovely to hear him reprise Vader one last time in a future Star Wars project.

Source: Twitter

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