AI Will Soon Be Able to Record Darth Vader’s Voice
James Earl Jones, the actor who has recorded the well-known voice since the very beginning, has transferred the rights of his voice archive to a Ukrainian AI start-up.
You know James Earl Jones as the iconic voice of the world’s most famous Sith Lord, but also as an actor who is now 91 and therefore more than fully retired.
According to entertainment magazine Vanity Fair, Jones has now handed over the archive of his voice acting to Ukrainian start-up Respeecher. That company would use artificial intelligence to generate the familiar voice for the role of Darth Vader in ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’, a new Star Wars series on Disney+.
Respeecher uses voice clips or ‘sound bites’ to ‘clone’ the actor’s voice and thus record new dialogues without the actor being present. Jones was given the option to hand over his voice work after mentioning that he wanted to phase out his acting as Darth Vader.
It’s not the first time Lucasfilm, the company behind Star Wars, has used artificial intelligence to make actors appear without them being there. For example, the studio decided to recreate the likeness of deceased actress Carrie Fisher digitally and thus put her in the film Rogue One. So at least Jones got a chance to give his own consent for the use of his voice.