Nintendo announced Thursday that a new movie based on the “Super Mario Bros.” video game series is in the works and set for release in 2022.
The video game company will partner with Illumination — the animation studio behind “Despicable Me” and “Sing” — to produce the film on the “Nintendo Direct” livestream, according to Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto. It will be distributed by Universal and premiere in December 2022. Miyamoto and Chris Meledandri, Illumination founder and CEO, will serve as producers of the film. (RELATED: Netflix Acquires Roald Dahl Story Company To Produce Cinematic Universe)
“Guardians of the Galaxy” star Chris Pratt will assume the role of Mario in the upcoming picture, according to the same announcement. Other members of the top-billed cast include “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” star Charlie Day as Mario’s younger brother Luigi, comedian Keegan-Michael Key as Toad, Jack Black as Bowser, Anya Taylor-Joy as Princess Peach and Seth Rogen as Donkey Kong.
Fans of the series immediately noticed the absence of Charles Martinet. Martinet, who has voiced both Mario and Luigi along with a host of other “Mario Bros.” characters, will appear in cameo roles throughout the film, according to Miyamoto. Pratt was quick to assure fans that he has been “working hard” on the voice.
The new movie is the first film adaptation of the “Mario Bros.” franchise since the 1993 film starring Bob Hoskins as Mario and John Leguizamo as Luigi. A television series based on the video games called “The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!” was also broadcast in 1989, starring WWE superstar “Captain” Lou Albano and Danny Wells as the titular duo of plumbers.