Best Known For
James Earl Jones is the American actor who voiced Darth Vader in the Star Wars film franchise. He's also known for roles in such films as The Hunt for Red October and Field of Dreams, and such shows as Frasier and Everwood.
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On the big screen, Jones often played strong, authoritative characters. He played a Navy admiral in 1990's The Hunt for Red October—a role he reprised in Patriot Games (1992) and Clear and Present Danger (1994). That same year, he lent his commanding voice to the hit animated film The Lion King.
Jones thrived on TV as well, winning a pair of Emmy Awards in 1991,
for his leading role on the dramatic series Gabriel's Fire and his supporting role on the miniseries Heat Wave. On Gabriel's Fire, which ran from 1990 to '91, he starred as a former cop who was released from prison after being convicted of murder.
Jones tried his hand at series TV again in 1995 with the short-lived drama Under One Roof. He also made guest appearances on such shows as Frasier and Everwood.
In more recent years, Jones, now in his 80s, continues to juggle a variety of film, TV and stage roles, and remains an in-demand actor. In 2005, he earned another Tony nomination (best leading actor in a play) for his work on On Golden Pond (Leslie Uggams co-starred in the production). Three years later, he played Big Daddy in the revival of the Tennessee Williams's classic Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, co-starring with Terrence Howard and Phylicia Rashad.
In 2012, Jones earned a Tony nomination for his performance in the revival of The Best Man by Gore Vidal. Around this same time, he was cast alongside Vanessa Hudgens and Rosario Dawson in the 2013 drama Gimme Shelter, and alongside Peter Dinklage and Mila Kunis in the dramatic comedy The Angriest Man in Brooklyn.
Over the years, Jones has received many accolades for his contributions to the arts, including a Kennedy Center Honor in 2002 and an honorary Academy Award in 2011—the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences bestowed this award to Jones for "his legacy of consistent excellence and uncommon versatility," according to the academy's website.
Previously married to actress Julienne Marie, Jones wed Cecilia Hart in 1982. The couple has one son, Flynn Earl Jones.
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