During the most recent Nintendo Direct, legendary game developer Shigeru Miyamoto announced the upcoming Super Mario Bros. animated film is arriving on December 21, 2022. Nintendo is collaborating with Illumination on the film, which is the same studio behind hits like the Despicable Me franchise, The Secret Life of Pets franchise, and the Dr. Suess adaptions How the Grinch Stole Christmas and The Lorax.
While there wasn’t any film footage shared, Miyamoto did announce the star-studded cast of the upcoming movie. Mario will be portrayed by Chris Pratt (Guardians of the Galaxy, Jurassic World), Princess Peach will be portrayed by Anya Taylor-Joy (Queen’s Gambit), and Jack Black (School of Rock, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle) will be playing Bowser. Seth Rogen (Superbad, Knocked Up) will take on Donkey Kong, Toad will be portrayed by Keegan Michael-Key (Key & Peele), while Fred Armisen (Saturday Night Live) will play Cranky Kong. In addition, Kevin Michael Richardson (Invincible, Cleveland Show) will play Kamek, and stand-up comedian Sebastian Maniscalco will play Spike.
The film’s story wasn’t revealed (maybe Bowser kidnapping Peach?), however, the script is written by Matthew Fogel, who also wrote The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part. The film is being directed by Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic, who previously collaborated on both the Teen Titans Go! animated series and the movie.
The last time there was a feature-length film based on the Mario Bros. was 1993’s live-action movie Super Mario Bros starring Bob Hoskins as Mario, John Leguizamo as Luigi, and Dennis Hopper as King Koopa. In the late ‘80s, there was also the animated series The Super Mario Bros. Super Show! which starred WWF wrestling star Captain Lou Albano as Mario and Danny Wells as Luigi. The series was a mix of live-action skits, as well as animated episodes. Reruns ran through the 90s keeping the popularity of the game characters alive and relevant.