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Kenny James: The man behind the voice of ‘Bowser’ from Nintendo’s Super Mario franchise

Kenny James is an American voice actor who is known for his work as the voice actor in Nintendo’s popular “Super Mario” video game series as “Bowser.” (Supplied)
Kenny James is an American voice actor who is known for his work as the voice actor in Nintendo’s popular “Super Mario” video game series as “Bowser.” (Supplied)
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19 Aug 2020 04:08:02 GMT9
19 Aug 2020 04:08:02 GMT9

Amin Abbas Dubai

Kenny James is an American voice actor who is known for his work as the voice actor in Nintendo’s popular “Super Mario” video game series as “Bowser.”

In an exclusive interview with Arab News Japan, James shared his inspiration for Japanese anime and culture, explaining he had only discovered the popular animated genre recently. He said he enjoyed series such as ‘Attack on Titan’ and ‘My Hero Academia.’

James said he started his career in voice acting when he was 40 years old, when he started performing in a live theater.

“After taking a voice over class at the University of Washington, I had a demo made and that demo found its way to a producer at Bad Animals Studios where Nintendo records in Seattle,” he explained. “They started to send me audition requests and one of them was for Bowser. I didn’t really think much of it until I got the part.  Now, it’s been 15 years.”

James said the biggest challenge he faced as “Bowser” was that his voice strained.

“Bowser is no easy character to voice, especially (Meowser,) he was the most difficult in a way that I could taste blood when I was finished with the recording session,” he told Arab News Japan.

James said he was pleased to be part of Nintendo’s Super Mario as it marks its 35th anniversary this year.

The voice actor explained that his first job was as a voice actor for an answering machine.

“A guy in Canada paid me to do impersonations of Scooby and Shaggy, etc… That’s what made me realize that I might be able to actually make this into something,” he added.

Regarding his recommendations for those who want to do voice acting for cartoons, anime and video games, James said: “First, be an actor, find a community theater near you and audition for live shows.  You will learn to take direction and to find the characters inside you. Standing in a recording booth is actually more difficult.”

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