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Super Mario Bros. is the latest in the growing trend of video game movie adaptations. The 2023 mustachioed plumber’s Hollywood treatment seems to be enjoying a better reception than the 1993 attempt starring Bob Hoskins. This time, Mario was voiced by Chris Pratt.

Super Mario Bros. movie

Jack Black who played the fire-breathing Bowser, believes there will be more gaming intellectual property making it to cinema screens in the coming years. Speaking ahead of the Super Mario Bros. movie release, Black told the BBC that the TV and movie industry is experiencing “a little bit of shrinkage”.

“In the future, film and television are going to keep going towards using the stories told in video games, because that market seems to be growing exponentially,” Black said. “It will be interesting to see what happens to the entertainment industry over the next 20 to 30 years but I think we will be seeing more storytelling from the gaming universe.”

Video game movie adaptations have long struggled to please fans and critics when compared to the originals. However, HBO’s The Last of Us series was a standout with many already pitching it to win awards.

“I’m a fan of adaptations when done right,” Black said. “The Last of Us was fantastic. What’s crazy is how loyal it is to the original source material. It’s basically all from the game with just a couple of tweaks. It’s going to win all the awards.”

Super Mario Bros. movie

Unlike The Last of Us, the Super Mario Bros. movie did not rely on the video game as a storyboard—and it is easy to see why. However, the success of Super Mario Bros. at the Box Office will likely motivate studio bosses to try adapting another game.

Super Mario Bros. movie sets up a potential sequel

In the past, once movie credits started rolling up, you know that the movie has ended. However, in recent years, mid-credit and post-credit scenes (arguably started by Marvel Cinematic Universe) have become a big deal that keeps viewers glued to their screen until the very end.

Super Mario Bros. borrows from different spinoffs of the game
Super Mario Bros. borrows from different spinoffs of the game

The Super Mario Bros. movie followed the same trend with mid-credit and post-credit scenes. If you hate spoilers, it will be safe to take your leave here. But, if you don’t mind, keep reading.

In the mid-credit scene, we see Bowser delivering another “Peaches” rendition behind the piano. The camera pans away and it becomes evident that Bowser is still having a hangover from the mushroom he ate earlier in the movie. Bowser is still in a prison cell shaped like a birdcage.

Luigi and Bowser

In the Super Mario Bros. post-credit scene, it appears Mario and Luigi have relocated to the Mushroom Kingdom where a new character that will likely drive the future story is about to be born. The camera descends into the mysterious sewer through which Mario and Luigi entered the Mushroom Kingdom. It appears damaged after the battle with Bowser.

However, this time, the camera descends far beyond the depth that we were familiar with until it stops at an egg that shakes like it was about to hatch. The screen cuts to black for the last time. There are speculations already that the egg is a Yoshi egg, Mario’s rideable companion. These cutscenes surely set up the Super Mario Bros. sequel.

There won’t be future Mario mobile games

Super Mario Bros. (Photo credit Nintendo)
Super Mario (Photo credit: Nintendo)

Nintendo has been secretive about revealing the future of the mustachioed plumber after the Super Mario Bros. movie. However, in an exclusive interview with Shigeru Miyamoto, the legendary video game designer and self-acclaimed “Mario’s mom”, he revealed that there won’t be a new Mario for smartphones.

“Mobile apps will not be the primary path of future Mario games,” Miyamoto said firmly during the parley with Variety on the making of the Super Mario Bros. movie.

After two moderately successful but diminishing iOS games and another (Dr. Mario World) that was shut down after two years, Nintendo has decided to pull Mario out of the mobile market.

Super Mario Bros. movie

Super Mario Run which was released in 2016 grossed $60 million in the first 12 months. Mario Kart Tour released about three years later was a bit more successful, grossing $300 million. However, this was paltry compared to Mario Kart 8’s $3 billion revenue.

“Firstly, Nintendo’s core strategy is a hardware and software integrated gaming experience,” said Miyamoto who was pivotal to the Nintendo Wii console design. “The intuitiveness of the console is a part of the gaming experience. When we explored the opportunity of making Mario games for the mobile phone, it was challenging to determine what that game should be.”

With the Super Mario Bros. movie opening hand-in-hand with Universal Studios Hollywood’s Super Nintendo World, fans of the franchise are eager to know the next mainline Super Mario game. The 2017 Mario Odyssey was the last major installment in the Super Mario series.

When the question about the next mainline Mario game was thrown directly to Miyamoto, he chuckled before saying “All I can say is please stay tuned for future Nintendo Directs.”

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