Super Mario Bros. Film Co-Producer Calls Chris Pratt's Mario Performance "Phenomenal"
posted on by Kim Morrissy
Illumination's animated film of Super Mario Bros. caused a big stir online in September when Chris Pratt was announced as the voice of Mario. Illumination founder Chris Meledandri, who is co-producing the film with Super Mario Bros. creator Shigeru Miyamoto, praised Pratt's performance in his brief comments to the TooFab entertainment news website.
"All I can tell you is the voice that he's doing for us in Mario is phenomenal," he said. "I can't wait for people to hear it."
When asked about the character's Italian accent and whether the iconic "It's-a-me! Mario!" antics will be represented, he responded that it's "not the tenor of the performance." However, he added that it is "covered" in the movie and that "we definitely nod to that."
Regarding the character's ethnicity, he noted that as an Italian American himself, he understands the concerns around representation in the casting and mentioned that Charlie Day, who plays Luigi, comes from an Italian heritage.
Other cast members include Anya Taylor-Joy as Princess Peach, 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. Charles Martinet, who has voiced Mario and many other Nintendo characters in games, will also voice "surprise cameos" in the film.
Illumination founder Chris Meledandri told entertainment news source Variety in November 2018 that the film was in “priority development” for a possible theatrical debut by 2022. Meledandri stated that Miyamoto is "front and center in the creation of this film" and noted that the "original creative voice" is often absent from Hollywood film adaptations.