Next Year, Universal and Illumination Entertainment will release an animated adaptation of the Super Mario games. Nintendo revealed the voice cast for the movie last year, with Chris Pratt set to play the mustachioed mascot himself. The move drew a lot of confusion from long-time Mario fans, including those that wished Charles Martinet had landed the lead. In a new interview with Variety, producer Chris Meledandri spoke highly of Pratt's work on the film, revealing that production is currently 75 percent complete. Apparently, there have been about 15 recording sessions in total, and Meledandri has been quite happy with the results.
"Chris was cast because we felt he could give a great performance as Mario. And now that we've done about 15 recording sessions, and the movie is three-quarters done, I sit here and say that I love his performance as Mario," Meledandri told Variety.
A live-action Super Mario Bros. movie released in theaters in 1993. The movie strayed greatly from the source material, and negative reception pushed Nintendo away from theatrical adaptations of its properties for decades. This time around, creator Shigeru Miyamoto is "very hands-on" with the Mario adaptation, which could bode well for its faithfulness to Nintendo's vision. It could also lead to additional Nintendo adaptations in the future; fans have wanted to see a Zelda film for quite some time! Hopefully Pratt's performance proves enjoyable for both long-time fans and casual audiences alike.
Pratt has clearly been the most controversial actor announced for the film, but the rest of the cast has been fairly well-received. The actor will be joined by Anya Taylor-Joy as Peach, Charlie Day as Luigi, Jack Black as Bowser, Seth Rogen as Donkey Kong, Keegan-Michael Key as Toad, Fred Armisen as Cranky Kong, Kevin Michael Richardson as Kamek, and Sebastian Maniscalco as Spike. While Charles Martinet will not be reprising the role of Mario, his voice will be heard in the movie in some form. The film is currently set to release in theaters on April 7, 2023.
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