Nintendo Announces Animated Mario Movie Release Date & Voice Cast

Nintendo announced some key details of its upcoming full-length animated Mario movie being put together by Illumination studios during a Nintendo Direct conference today. That includes the official release date for the United States, December 21, 2022.

In addition, Shigeru Miyamoto himself, the creator of Mario, said the cast will include Chris Pratt as Mario, Anya Taylor-Joy as Princess Peach, Charlie Day as Luigi, Jack Black as Bowser, Keegan-Michael Key as Toad, Seth Rogen as Donkey Kong, Charles Martinet, the videogame voice of Mario, appearing in surprise cameos, as well as other actors.

In the announcement, Miyamoto explained that he had been working with the movie studio, Illumination, and their CEO, Chris Meledandri, known for movies like Despicable Me and Sing.

The North American release of the film is set for December 21, 2022, with Europe, Japan and other regions’ release dates to be announced at a later time.

Miyamoto said it will be a long time before we see any footage from the movie, but with the all-star cast as good as it is, we’re guessing it will be worth the wait. Some of the other notable names attached to the project are Kevin Michael Richardson playing Kamek, Fred Armisen playing Cranky Kong and Sebastian Maniscalco playing Spike.

It’s not the first time the Mario Brothers will be hitting the big screen, with a live action adaptation gracing movie goers in 1993. However, given its animated nature, this new project will perhaps be the first time a movie adaptation that stays relatively true to its source material will be presented. The original film, starring Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo as Mario and Luigi, respectively, bares little resemblance of the cutesy characters of the games. However, it’s out-of-left field approach–creating a kind of cyberpunk world with modern dinosaurs–has since gained a cult following after its initial critical and commercial failure on the big screen.

With Illumination’s critical and commercial track record at the movies, as well as directly involving Miyamoto himself, we’re optimistic the new Mario movie will please audiences. Let’s a-go!