‘Star Wars’: James Earl Jones Worked Through a Stutter to Become an Iconic Film Voice

Star Wars they would not feel the same without the strong voice of James Earl Jones. The acclaimed actor never appears on screen in the big franchise, but his presence takes control of the story through his role as the voice of Darth Vader. Jones ’influence on the series was so great, that Disney brought him back for small roles in it Rogue One and Star Wars: Rebels, rather than redesign.

Despite all this, earlier in his life, Jones found it difficult to find his voice early in life. As a child growing up in Michigan, the actor developed a major stutter that emphasized his confidence.

The voice of the greatest ‘Star Wars’ speaker was created by poetry

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James Earl Jones at the 2017 Tony Awards Theo Wargo / Getty Photos for Tony Awards Results

Jones largely credits his break to one of his high school English teachers, Mr. Crouch. By the time, he had begun to write poetry, and the teacher saw a way to use this young pastime to push his student through his speech problems.

“I had started writing poetry in high school and he said of one of them, ‘Jim, this is a good poem,’” Jones explained. “Of course, it’s so good I don’t think you wrote it. I think you plagiarized it. If you want to prove that you wrote it, you have to stand in front of the class and recite it by heart. ‘I did. As they were in my own words, I got through. ”

Towards the end of his high school education, Jones’ progress with his stutter was long enough to lead to elections for reading and dramatic debate, according to Carolina Pediatric Medicine. There is no doubt that these programs were important in shaping the future Star Wars image down the path to becoming the beloved actor he is today.

Even years later, Jones was reluctant to say he was ever “cured” of his stutter, telling NPR he will never go away.

“I’m not saying I was cured,” Jones said. “I’m just working with him.”

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