James Earl Jones Was Originally Paid $7000 For Voicing Darth Vader

If you can believe it, James Earl Jones was paid just $US7000 for doing the voice of Darth Vader in the first Star Wars film. That’s about $US26,000 adjusted for inflation, but still not anywhere near a huge payday for a major motion picture.

“I got paid $US7000 and I thought that was good money,” told the American Film Institute a few years ago.

So how much did Jones make for The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi? He fails to mention those figures, but you can bet they were more than $US7000 each.

Don’t feel too bad for Jones. He’s now estimated to be worth about $US45 million. And if you haven’t heard the original on-set audio by English actor David Prowse, who played Vader in the suit, you should definitely listen to it now. It’s hard to imagine Vader being taken too seriously without Jones voicing the role.

Picture: Darth Vader and James Earl Jones via Getty

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