It’s confirmed, we’re getting animated movie based on the iconic video game franchise! The film is in the early stages after Illumination Entertainment reached an agreement with Nintendo to produce the upcoming Mario movie.
Miyamoto is the creator of Mario and many other Nintendo properties, and Meledandri is the owner of Illumination Entertainment, along with Universal Studios. Miyamoto has previously experimented with film, even releasing a series of Pikmin shorts. Last year, Nintendo made it clear it was interested in expanding to films but that it would like to do “more than just license something.”
Nintendo and Illumination are partnering on a movie starring Mario, co-produced by Shigeru Miyamoto and Chris Meledandri! pic.twitter.com/wVRPLIzcGJ
— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) February 1, 2018
Details about the movie’s story are sparse, but the film will be based on the world of Super Mario Bros. and will star Mario as the main character, and that it is being produced by Mario’s original creator, Shigeru Miyamoto, and distributed by Universal. Illumination is an animation powerhouse, churning out box office hits like the Despicable Me franchise, The Secret Life of Pets, and Sing.
Just a few months ago, Nintendo released their first Mario game for the Switch console, Super Mario Odyssey, which was met with widespread acclaim from fans and critics alike. The goal for this new Mario movie is to have it premiere in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which is also when Nintendo hopes to have the Super Nintendo Land theme park open at Universal in Japan.
Video Game movies have had a mixed reputation when it comes Hollywood. Three of which were released in 2016 alone — Sony’s animated Angry Birds; Legendary’s live-action Warcraft, which performed well in China while bombing in North America; and New Regency’s live-action Assassin’s Creed. The upcoming Lara Croft reboot, Tomb Raider starring Alicia Vikander is set to hit theaters in March so we’ll wait to see which end of the box-office spectrum that video game adaptation falls on.
Images: Universal, Nintendo, Illumination