It’s-a me, IP management! In a Nintendo Direct presentation this afternoon, Nintendo and Illumination announced that they will release an animated Mario movie next Christmas, with a voice cast that (1) is complete chaos and (2) features exactly zero Italians. Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto revealed that Chris Pratt will take on the role of the iconic mustachioed plumber himself, with (half-Italian) Charlie Day as his brother/sidekick/unpaid intern Luigi. Princess Peach will be played by Anya Taylor-Joy, and (okay, this one is actually really good casting) Jack Black as Bowser. Rounding out the cast are Keegan-Michael Key as Toad, Kevin Michael Richardson as Kamek, and Sebastian Maniscalco as Spike. Seth Rogen and Fred Armisen will appear as Donkey Kong and his grandfather Cranky Kong, respectively. And Charles Martinet, who’s voiced Mario since 1992, will make a much-deserved cameo.
We guess we should all just be grateful Elon Musk and Grimes aren’t anywhere to be found on that cast list. But hey, Nintendo, if you wanted a Hollywood Chris to play Mario, certified Italian hunk Chris Messina was RIGHT THERE.
Update, September 24: Chris Pratt has confirmed his role in the Mario movie, telling a story on Instagram about how when he was a kid he never had a quarter to play Super Mario Bros. at the laundromat, so he resorted to stealing coins out of wishing wells (which, admittedly, does sound like Mario.) What doesn’t sound like Mario? Pratt saying “It’s-a me, Mario!” While he clarifies that’s not the voice he’s using in the movie — and that he’s “working hard on it” — it doesn’t exactly inspire confidence.