The actor further states that when he first started reading the script for “The Empire Strikes back,’he was convinced Vader did not lie to Luke Skywalker when he asked him about his dad.
James Earl Jones was only paid $7,000 to portray Darth Vader in Star Wars: A New Hope -however, the actor claims that to him that at the time it was an enormous score.
To mark Star Wars Day, The Hollywood Reporter looked at the interviews Jones has given over the years, during which Jones talked about his role as the famous sci-fi antagonist.
In the beginning, Jones said he was only paid $700 for his part in that 1977 blockbuster movie directed by George Lucas that could change not only film making but also pop culture worldwide.
In an earlier conversation in a previous chat with American Film Institute, Jones stated that he was chosen by Lucas as the actor in the suit, former David Prowse, had the massive build required for the role however his voice was not right.
“George was looking for, excuse the expression an eerie voice. He hires a guy born in Mississippi and born in Michigan but who struggles to speak. This is the voice. It’s myself,” Jones said. “I got lucky, in spite of all these so-called handicaps to get a job that was paid $7000! That was an excellent amount. Then I was the voice of a film.”
In the same interview with AFI interview, Jones said that when he was back to the stage for The Empire Strikes Back He planned to deliver an entirely different performance from the one he gave during A New Hope. Lucas ended the interview swiftly, he said.
“He told me”We don’t have any idea exactly what we did wrong and we’ll just have to do what we can. Naturally I wanted to create Darth Vader more interesting, more subtle, and more psychologically-oriented,” Jones said. “And He was like, ‘No, no. We’re finding that you have to keep your voice within an extremely narrow band of inflection since he’s not an actual human being, in all reality. ‘”
In a different interview for the making-of-feature, Jones said when he first started reading the screenplay in Empire when he first read the script, it was clear to him that Vader was lying to Luke Skywalker regarding being his father. He said, “I thought, ‘He’s lying. I’m curious about what they’ll do to reveal that lie. ‘”
Yes, Jones has had some amusement with his sound in the past. But just one time, as he stated during the interview on The Dick Cavett Show.
“I was traveling across the country using CB radios and utilized the name “Darth Vader” as the handle for my radio,” the actor recalled. “It scared some people out. As I arrived at the truck stop the place was abuzz around it. Then I decided to not continue doing that.”