After a stint in the Army, he enrolled at New York's American Theatre Wing. He won a Tony for his work in "The Great White Hope," a role he later reprised in the 1970 film, for which he received a Best Actor Oscar nomination. His screen debut came as Lt. Zogg in Dr. Strangelove (1964). With his authoritative booming voice, Jones received in 1977 what may be his most memorable role, as the voice of Darth Vader in Star Wars.
In the 1990s, Jones appeared as Admiral James Greer in films based on Tom Clancy novels -- The Hunt for Red October (1990), Patriot Games (1992) and Clear and Present Danger (1994). His voice work continued in 1994 when he played Mufasa in the animated classic The Lion King.