Nintendo has revealed that Chris Pratt will voice Mario in a forthcoming animated film based on the Super Mario Bros. game franchise.
The film’s star-studded voice cast also includes Anya Taylor-Joy as Princess Peach, Charlie Day as Luigi, Jack Black as Bowser and Keegan-Michael Key as Toad.
Rounding out the cast is Seth Rogen as Donkey Kong, Fred Armisen as Cranky Kong, Kevin Michael Richardson as Kamek and Sebastian Maniscalco as Spike. The film will also feature cameos from Charles Martinet, who has voiced Mario, Luigi, Wario and other characters from the Super Mario world since the early 1990s.
Announced today during a Nintendo Direct livestream, the film is scheduled to arrive in cinemas on December 21, 2022, via Universal Pictures’ Illumination Entertainment. Nintendo and Universal are co-financing the project.
Super Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto is serving as the film’s co-producer along with Illumination founder Chris Meledandri. The film will be directed by Aaron Hovarth and Michael Jelenic, with a screenplay written by Matthew Fogel, whose credits include The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part and upcoming Illumination film Minions: The Rise of Gru.
Announcing the film’s cast and release date during the Nintendo Direct, Meledandri said he was “honored to have the unique opportunity to work so closely with Shigeru Miyamoto and the widely imaginative team at Nintendo to bring these characters to life”.
“We are collaborating with Chris and his experienced team to not just create a character licensed film, but a new piece of entertainment which brings Super Mario Bros. to life on the screen, and allows everyone to enjoy whether or not they know about the game,” Miyamoto said.
“The production so far is constructive and going very well, and both parties are learning a lot from each other. We humbly ask that fans wait just a little longer for the premiere, and we hope they look forward to seeing the unique characters from Super Mario Bros. on the big screen.”
The upcoming film is not the first time the Mario universe has been adapted for the big screen. In 1993, the live-action Super Mario Bros. was released, starring Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo as the titular plumbers in a critical and box office failure that has nevertheless become a cult classic in later years.