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The Super Mario Bros. Movie Casting Called Out by John Leguizamo for Being Non-Diverse -Newzflash

Super Mario Bros. star John Leguizamo is unhappy with the casting for the upcoming Mario movie. Speaking to Indiewire, the former Luigi actor expressed his concerns regarding the film’s diversity compared to his 1993 live-action adaptation, calling the situation “unfortunate.” The upcoming animated version, directed by Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic, has cast Chris Pratt and Charlie Day in the leads, as the titular plumber Mario and brother Luigi, respectively. Leguizamo, who is Latinx, notes that the new film went “backwards” by having two white actors voice the characters.

“Directors Annabel Jankel and Rocky Morton fought really hard for me to be the main role [in the 1993 Super Mario Bros. film] because I was a Latin male and they [the studio] didn’t want me to be the leader. They fought really hard and it was such a breakthrough. For them to go backwards and not throw another [actor of colour] it’s kind of bad,” he told Indiewire at a New York premiere of The Menu. His co-star in the film, Anya Taylor-Joy, voices Princess Peach in the upcoming animated film adaptation, which will be titled The Super Mario Bros. Movies. Pratt’s casting as Mario was controversial and ridiculed online as fans did not trust the actor to deliver the high-pitched Italian “woo-hoo!”. Neither Pratt nor Leguizamo are of Italian descent.

After the trailer debut, Leguizamo spoke out against The Super Mario Bros. Movie in October and noted that the reboot was a good idea. “But too bad they went all white! No Latinx in the lead! Groundbreaking colorblind casting in the original! Plus I’m the only one who knows how to make this movie work script wise!” he tweeted (via DailyMail). in an interview with Variety earlier this year, Pratt stated that he had worked closely with the directors to get the voice right and that it was “unlike anything you’ve heard in the Mario world before.” Fans were right to be worried when the trailer proved the lack of an accent in the single line delivered by Mario, it was just Pratt playing himself.

The Super Mario Bros. Movie also features the voices of Jack Black (Tropic Thunder) as Bowser, Seth Rogen (Superbad) as Donkey Kong and Keegan-Michael Key (The Lion King) as Toad. Charles Martinet, who originally voiced Mario and Luigi in the games, is also involved in an undisclosed role. Meanwhile, Shigeru Miyamoto, creator of the Mario and The Legend of Zelda games, is joining as a producer.

The Super Mario Bros. movie will be released on April 7, 2023 in theaters worldwide.


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The movie Super Mario Bros
  • Publication date 7 April 2023
  • Language English
  • Genre Animation, children and family
  • Cast

    Chris Pratt, Anya Taylor-Joy, Charlie Day, Jack Black, Keegan-Michael Key, Seth Rogen, Fred Armisen, Kevin Michael Richardson, Sebastian Maniscalco, Charles Martinet

  • Manager

    Aaron Horvath, Michael Jelenic

  • Producer

    Chris Meledandri, Shigeru Miyamoto

  • Production

    Illumination, Nintendo, Universal Pictures

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