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Reported by the Wall Street Journal, a Mario themed animated movie is in the works. Being crafted by Illumination’s Paris studio Mac Guff, the film is only in the early stages of planning. More movies could supposedly be made, but as of right now, only one film is planned. This is understandable given Nintendo’s history with movies and how Hollywood adapted Mario and Luigi the first time around in the 1993 with “Super Mario Bros.” live-action film.

You can find the full article on the Wall Street Journal site; otherwise you can view part of it below:


Illumination, which made “Despicable Me,” “Minions” and “The Secret Life of Pets,” has been talking to Nintendo for more than a year about the movie, according to the people who know about the recent talks. The potential deal follows an agreement Universal’s theme-parks unit made with Nintendo two years ago to build attractions based on Mario and other characters.

A Nintendo spokesman declined to comment, as did an Illumination spokeswoman.

Universal finances and releases films produced by Illumination, which it co-owns with the animation company’s chief executive, Chris Meledandri.

Nintendo hasn’t made deals for movies or TV shows based on any of its marquee characters since 1993’s commercially and critically disastrous “Super Mario Brothers” starring Bob Hoskins, John Leguizamo and Dennis Hopper. Since then, its only cinematic efforts have been 20 inexpensive children’s animated movies based on its “Pokémon” games that were produced by an affiliate.

The most complicated issue in the negotiations between Illumination and Nintendo has been making the Japanese videogame company feel confident it will be involved enough in the creative process, said one person close to the talks. Nintendo’s creative guru, Shigeru Miyamoto, who created Mario Bros., has been part of the talks and likely will be a producer on the movie, along with Mr. Meledandri, this person said.

The agreement could allow Illumination to make multiple “Super Mario” movies, though only one is currently planned, this person added. It would be animated by Illumination’s Paris studio Mac Guff and is in the early stages of development, meaning it likely wouldn’t come out for several years.


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Written by Jennifer Burch

Illustrator, designer, writer and big Nintendo geek, you can find Jennifer with an N3DS within reach 24/7. As the oldest of three, she has survived many Mario Party, Super Smash Bros. and Mario Kart sessions intact in addition to getting her brothers hooked on some really weird games. (Cubivore anyone?)