Anyone who has followed me knows I am a huge Mario fan. Super Mario Bros would probably be in the top 5 franchises that I love. Maybe even top 3. Mario will forever be my all time favorite video game, and I have regularly argues the merits of the 1993 Super Mario Bros. movie. When word broke in mid 2018 I was both excited and skeptical. I would love to see a new live action Mario film. However an animated take could work. I still watch the original Super Mario Brothers Super Show. But what we will definitely get is an animated film brought to us by Nintendo and the studio behind the Minions films, Illumination. And now, we have our cast. And it’s, it’s a cast of a film. A strong cast, for a regular animated film. I’m not so sure about a Mario film.
However, I digress. We will get into my thoughts on the cast later, lets take a look at this super strong ensemble. Nintendo released this tweet giving us the full cast. A very impressive cast that even includes the original voice of Mario for nearly 30 years, in a cameo role. So Star Lord, and The Special himself Chris Pratt will voice our iconic hero Mario, with It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia star Charlie Day as his brother, my favorite, Luigi. The Queens Gambit star Ana Taylor-Joy will voice the ever in peril Princess Peach, with Keagan-Michael Key as Toad. Jack Black will voice the evil King Bowser, along with his own minions in toe. Kevin Michael Richardson as his advisor Kamek, with Italian comedian Sebastian Manisalco as Spike. Further more, Seth Rogen will voice Donkey Kong, with Fred Armisen voicing Donkey’s grandfather Cranky Kong.
A strong cast in deed. Seth Rogen as Donkey Kong is incredible casting, in future installments I better hear Joseph Gordan-Levit as Diddy Kong At first I wasn’t prepared for the announcement of Jack Black as Bowser, however after sleeping on it I have come to really like that choice. We tend to forget Jack is more then just a straight comedic actor, he can bring a strong performance to Bowser. Key is prefect casting for Toad, he could even steal the show. And Sebastian being included, as one of the only 2 Italians in this film, is perfect and makes me really happy.
Now our superstars, Mario and Luigi. Like bowser I wasn’t immediately stoked on Charlie Day as Luigi, but as I thought more about it i started to like it. Yes I would have loved to have New Jersey native Paul Rudd, voice the character, but Day is part Italian and is a top tear talent, so I will take it. However I, like most of the internet now, am not sold on Pratt as Mario. Yes Pratt is in all star talent. Pratt is perfect for Star Lord, and Raptor trainer Grady. He has even brought in iconic voice roles with Emmit and Barley Lightfoot in the Lego Movies and Onward. However, he’s very midwestern. Nothing about Pratt or his voice screams Italian, New York, plumber. Well maybe plumber. Personally I would’ve gone with Robert Di Nero, anyone from the upcoming Many Saints Of Newark, or I dunno, maybe Charles Martinet. Who you have in the film, who has voiced Mario for 30 YEARS!!!! I get you need star power(pun intended) but you can have that with Jack Black, Ana Taylor-Joy, Charlie Day, Keegan-Michael Key, and hell, even MARIO HIMSELF! The character could sell his own movie.
However, let’s not jump to too many conclusions. We haven’t heard the voice, we haven’t seen a frame of animated film. Let us wait it out, and just be excited that we are getting a new Mario movie. We only have a year and a half as Super Mario Bros will be released on December 21st 2022, and will be directed by Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic from a script by Matthew Fogel. Hopefully we can see Sonic show up at some point, and I mean Roger Craig Smith not Ben Swartz, no offense Ben. But what say you? Do you like the cast? Answer the call in the comments below!