I just watched Star Wars and noticed that James Earl Jones is not listed anywhere in the credits. I wanted to know why, given that he voiced Darth Vader?

2 Answers 2


From the IMDB trivia page

James Earl Jones supplied the voice of Darth Vader, but specifically requested that he not be credited. At the time, the reason he cited was that he felt he had not done enough work to get the billing, but he later admitted that he didn't want his name associated with the film because he was still an up-and-coming actor, and didn't want to be typecast. Jones does receive billing in the subsequent sequels and the 1997 "Special Edition".

  • 12
    That's the nice way of saying he thought the movie was going to be a disaster and did not want to be pulled down by his association with it... which when you consider other sci-fi movies of the time, it was not an unreasonable concern.
    – Chad
    Commented Feb 25, 2014 at 17:30
  • 3
    @Chad - But he also wasn't credited for the second film, even though it was clear by then that the first one wasn't 'a disaster'.
    – Oliver_C
    Commented Feb 25, 2014 at 21:43

From an interview with James Earl Jones (2008):

Q: How come you didn’t take a credit for Darth Vader’s voiceover in the first “Star Wars”?

  • The first two. You know the story, don’t you?

    When Linda Blair did the girl in “The Exorcist,” they hired Mercedes McCambridge to do the voice of the devil coming out of her. And there was controversy as to whether Mercedes should get credit. I was one who thought no, she was just special effects. (Note: The Screen Actors Guild helped her eventually receive credit for her work.)

    So when it came to Darth Vader, I said, no I’m just special effects. But it became so identified that by the third one, I thought, OK I’ve been denying it, I’ve been saying it sounds like the (7-Up soft drink) Uncola nut guy Holder. Geoffrey Holder! ... and I got away with it.

    But for the third one, I said OK, I’ll let them put my name on it.

Q: People thought it was Geoffrey Holder back then?

  • A lot of people I talked to did. I’d say, “Yeah, it does sound like him, doesn’t it?”
  • 4
    Hear Geoffrey Holder's voice in this 'Uncola' commercial and judge for yourself if he sounds like James Earl Jones.
    – Oliver_C
    Commented Feb 25, 2014 at 22:15

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