The Super Mario Bros. Movie made a lot of money at the box office. A lot. Enough that if he chooses Luigi will never again have to unclog a toilet or drive a go-kart. But the 2023 animated film wasn’t the video game brothers’ first trip to theaters. Thirty years ago, the Super Mario Bros. made their live-action adventure debut in a film starring Bob Hoskins, John Leguizamo, and Dennis Hopper. It… It was not as successful. That Mario movie still has its fans, though, and those in Japan will soon get a chance to see the film in a whole new, upgraded way. 1993’s Super Mario Bros. is returning to movie theaters there to celebrate the film’s 30th anniversary with a new 4K restoration.
Oricon news reports (in a story we first heard at Crunchyroll) that 1993’s Super Mario Bros. will mark three decades in style. Super Mario 4K quality style, to be exact. This updated restoration of the Super Mario Bros. movie, recently completed, will arrive in Japanese theaters starting on September 15. That’s the day the film premiered in the country. (It debuted in the U.S. in May of that same year.)
The 1993 movie was officially known in Japan as Super Mario: Goddess of the Demon Empire, a vastly superior title we should all retroactively adopt. It also featured Samantha Mathis as Princess Daisy in a story about two Brooklyn plumbers who “travel to another dimension to rescue a princess from the evil dictator King Koopa and stop him from taking over the world.”
While the film is not exactly a critical darling (to be polite), it does have its charms. Those charms should be more evident than ever now that the film has a 4K restoration. The only question we have left is when will those of us on the other side of the Pacific get to see it? Mama mia! We can’t exactly just tunnel over to Japan, you know? Although, maybe Luigi can afford to fly us over to see the live-action Super Mario Bros. while it’s in theaters, thanks to the animated movie’s success.