Is there a video game lover who has never played Nintendo’s platform video game Super Mario?
According to reports on Tuesday , the mustachioed video-game character and his brother Luigi could soon star in an animated movie from the Universal-backed studio Illumination Entertainment behind the Despicable Me series which also featured the well accepted little yellow Minions.
The companies have been in negotiations for a year and the fact Universal (which finances and distributes Illumination’s movie) has partnered with Nintendo for several theme parks was helpful. Right now, the deal is one for one movie, but there is potential for more.
According to the Journal, “Mario and Luigi are heading to the big screen in one of the highest-profile licensing deals by a Hollywood studio in years.”
While there’s nothing official yet, the paper goes on to note that Illumination Entertainment, home of the Minions, is “close” to an agreement with Nintendo to use the plumber brothers in a film.
The bros aren’t strangers to the big screen. Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo starred in the 1993 live-action movie, “Super Mario Bros,” which was critically panned. According to Metacritic, Hoskins called the film “the worst thing I ever did.”
However, plans are expected to go ahead with production as Illumination does have a knack for appealing animated movies, though, and Nintendo’s determination to maintain some creative input suggests that the project won’t take any odd turns.
As it stands, Nintendo has plenty of motivation to get a movie off the ground. Nintendo’s fortunes are back on the rise, and Super Mario Odyssey is widely regarded as one of the series’ best games for a long time — the movie might be late to the party, but it’d still take advantage of a massive amount of good will.
The animated Super Mario Bros. film is currently in “early development,” which doesn’t mean much. Animated films, especially ones as important as this, tend to take a long time to make, hence no date was given for a possible film release.
It is worth knowing that Super Mario Bros. is the best-selling Nintendo Entertainment System video game by sales (40,240,000).