‘Super Mario Bros.’ Animated Movie Delayed to 2023 — Try the 1986 Anime Instead

Super Mario Bros. fans will have to wait a little longer to see the newest big-screen adaptation of the beloved video game franchise. On April 25, Nintendo announced that it had delayed Illumination’s Super Mario Bros. animated film to spring 2023, just a few months after its originally-anticipated release date. Although it’s not quite the same, there’s still a way for fans to get their Super Mario Bros anime fix — the very first Mario film project from 1986 has just been re-released in 4K, the best-quality version ever seen. Here’s how to watch it for free.

Super Mario Bros Luigi and Mario in Tokyo
Super Mario Bros. Luigi and Mario in Tokyo | Yoshikazu Tsuno/AFP via Getty Images

Illumination’s ‘Super Mario Bros.’ movie starring Chris Pratt has been pushed to 2023

Nintendo unveiled the cast and original release date for the Super Mario Bros. movie back in September 2021, sparking a wave of controversy among fans. That’s because the film has a surprising line-up of stars, including Chris Pratt in the lead as Mario. Meanwhile, Charlie Day will play Mario’s brother, Luigi, and Anya Taylor-Joy will play Princess Peach. Jack Black, Seth Rogen, Keegan-Michael Key, Fred Armisen, Kevin Michael Richardson, and Sebastian Maniscalco will also star. Charles Martinet, the voice of Mario in the video games, will have a cameo.

The Super Mario Bros. movie, which does not yet have a trailer or plot details, was planned for release on Dec. 21, 2022. However, Nintendo game director Shigeru Miayomoto took to Twitter this week to announce a delay. The film will now arrive on April 7, 2023, in North America.

“My deepest apologies, but I promise it will be well worth the wait,” the tweet read.

Fans can get their ‘Super Mario’ animation fix with a newly-released 4K version of ‘The Great Mission to Rescue Princess Peach’

The Super Mario Bros. movie delay comes just days after a 4K release of the 1986 Mario anime called Super Mario Bros. The Great Mission to Rescue Princess Peach. These two instances aren’t related, but the anime could soften the blow for anyone disappointed by the delay.

Directed by Masami Hata, the Japanese film sees Mario and Luigi attempt to protect Princess Peach from the wrath of King Koopa. While playing his Nintendo Entertainment System, Mario notices Peach running from danger. She jumps out of the TV and into Mario’s world, pleading for the brothers to keep her safe. However, Mario and Luigi are lured back into the video game’s Mushroom Kingdom, where they must stop King Koopa from taking over.

Only a small number of copies of the 1986 Mario anime exist, so many people consider it a rare find. However, over the years, free versions of the movie have popped up on YouTube. Now, the cleanest 4K restoration of the anime has arrived, thanks to FemboyFilms on YouTube. It’s also available for download via Internet Archive.

In the video’s description, FemboyFilms revealed that they worked with “fellow fan Carnivol,” who found a “16mm reduction print” in 2016, to restore the anime.

“We were able to clean it up super nicely (although some scratches were unable to be completely removed). nemu and Quazza spent months doing dust, dirt, and scratch removal. Thousands of individual pieces of debris were manually removed for this restoration,” the description explained.

The 1993 ‘Super Mario Bros.’ live-action film is also available to watch online

In addition to the Mario anime, fans can watch the more widely-known (and notoriously terrible) Super Mario Bros. live-action film from 1993 via Internet Archive. This version even includes 20 minutes of deleted scenes.

Starring Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo, this wonderfully weird movie sees Mario and Luigi trapped in a dystopian parallel universe after a plumbing gig goes wrong. They must put an end to President Koopa’s (Dennis Hopper) corruption and rescue Princess Daisy (Samantha Mathis).

Stay tuned to Showbiz Cheat Sheet for more updates on Nintendo and Illumination’s Super Mario Bros. movie.

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