Nintendo has announced some of the key voice actors for the upcoming Super Mario Bros. movie. Chris Pratt will be our Mario. And the internet is being very vocal about it.
Fans of Super Mario were split on the cast announcement for the new Super Mario Bros. movie. With the pitch perfect casting of Jack Black as Bowser on one hand and on the other, the divisive choice of Chris Pratt as Mario.
Chris Pratt already voices the main character of The LEGO Movie, Emmet. Perhaps he seemed like a safe bet. But the tide has been turning against him for a while.
Back in October, filmmaker Amy Berg posted a jokey Tweet stating ‘One has to go’ with images of the four big Hollywood Chris’s: Chris Pratt; Chris Hemsworth; Chris Pine; and Chris Evans. Twitter was swift and decisive: Chris Pratt was the worst Chris.
Why is he the worst Chris?
Pratt has a history of holding right-wing ideologies. He’s married to former Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s daughter, and he also follows ‘Turning Point USA’. This is an organisation that advocates for conservative education is schools, creating a ‘Professor Watchlist’ to track educators whose views they disagree with. He’s also worn a t-shirt with the ‘Don’t tread on me’ slogan on. This comes from the Gadsden Flag, associated with right-wing militias and neoconservatism.
And secondly – Chris’ faith. He’s part of the Hillsong Church. This gigantic, international Church (the Prime Minister of Australia is a proud member) has been accused of LGBTQphobia among other controversies. As reported in Junkee, the church put out a statement on a blog in 2015 saying the following:
“Put clearly, we do not affirm a gay lifestyle and because of this we do not knowingly have actively gay people in positions of leadership, either paid or unpaid. We are a gay welcoming church but we are not a church that affirms a gay lifestyle.”
It didn’t help that famous celebrity co-stars immediately sprang to defend their friend from the Twitter poll on which was the worst Chris. They called it mean, and claimed it was just because he was a Christian. Being voted 4th most popular out of four wealthy, white, straight male actors was treated as ‘bullying’. However, Chris’ association with far-right and allegedly anti-LGBTQ+ organisations was treated as ‘just being a Christian’. Twitter was not amused.
Chris Pratt as Mario
So now Chris Pratt has been attached to another huge Hollywood property. He’s in the Lego movies, Jurassic Park, Marvel – and now the Super Mario Bros. movie. He’s inescapable.
There were comments that it was outrageous that Charles Martinet, the voice of Mario and Luigi across all the games since 1986, has been sidelined.
There were humorous comments on the contrast in reactions to the fan-favourite casting of Idris Elba as Knuckles in the Sonic movies.
And there was anger from LGBTQ+ gamers that Pratt has been cast, despite his Church’s abhorrent views.
While there’s a lot to love about the casting for the new Super Mario Bros. movie – Seth Rogen as Donkey Kong is a stroke of genius – but Pratt seems like a misstep. Perhaps we just need to stick with the classic 1993 live action. It starred Bob Hoskins as Mario – yep, really – and John Leguizamo as Luigi. Will we ever see an Italian-American play Mario Mario?
What do you think of the casting of Chris Pratt as Mario? Are you still excited for the movie? Let us know via social media.
Don’t forget you can find great games and more on the GameByte Shop! We’ve stocked our store with the latest games, merch and accessories. We might even have a new-gen console or two! Sign up to our newsletter to be notified of our console drops, deals and more. Please note the GameByte Shop is available for UK customers only.
Featured Image Credit: Nintendo