Dust off your blue overalls and get ready to return to the Mushroom Kingdom on the big screen, because a new feature-length animated movie based on the iconic “Super Mario Bros.” video game franchise is reportedly in the works.
According to a story in today’s Wall Street Journal, Nintendo is set to team up with Illumination Entertainment, the animation studio behind the “Despicable Me” trilogy, its spinoff “Minions,” “Hop,” “Sing,” and “The Secret Life of Pets” to bring Mario and Luigi back into theaters.
Their previous Hollywood outing, 1993’s live-action “Super Mario Bros.” starring Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo as the high-flying plumbers from Brooklyn, was a let-down both critically and at the box office, though it has survived as a camp classic and one of the most notoriously bad movies ever made.
Should the deal with Illumination come to fruition, it would make a smart move in terms of corporate synergy with parent company NBCUniversal, whose Nintendo-themed lands at its Universal Studios theme parks are set to open within the next five years.
Let’s hope that if and when another “Super Mario Bros.” movie gets made, it remembers the simple rule of sticking to the source material– a concept the live-action version didn’t quite grasp. As the new “Super Mario Odyssey” game for the Nintendo Switch has reminded us, the world that Mario inhabits is brightly-colored, goofy (in a good way), and most importantly, fun.