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Hand out the de-evolution guns! Prepare for The Behind the Scenes Pic of the Day! Where’s my pizza?

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with today’s Behind the Scenes Pic!

Even as I Nintendo obsessed kid I knew something was wrong with Super Mario Bros: The Movie! Bob Hoskins as Mario is kind of genius casting, but the whole movie took off in such a dark, weird direction that at once seemed committed to the more ridiculous aspects of the video game and trying desperately to be completely different.

Now, young Samantha Mathis helped me through the movie (and puberty, but that’s gross so I won’t dwell on it) and there’s something gleefully unhinged about Dennis Hopper playing King Koopa, but I think this is the movie that make people say video games can not be adapted into a good movie. It’s silly, stupid, ridiculous and wastes the talents of so many genuinely good actors.

While I can’t say it’s a good movie, I must admit to having a certain amount of nostalgia about the flick… not so much having to do with quality, but a nostalgia for the time I saw it… That was the summer of Jurassic Park, the summer where my love affair with film evolved into a near religious calling.

The very nice Ryan Hoss of got in touch to share some never before published BTS pics from the movie and there was no hesitation on my part about saying yes. I’ve picked my favorites from the batch and decided to make a nice big rundown of images, most of them Goomba related.

Hope you guys enjoy these suckers! Click each to embiggen!



















Thanks again to for the shots!

Tomorrow’s Behind the Scenes Pic kicks off a holiday themed weekend!

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Readers Talkback
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  • May 6, 2011, 5:29 p.m. CST


    by wackybantha

    Awesome Pics!


  • May 6, 2011, 5:35 p.m. CST

    As for Super Mario Bros, wow, I can't believe this movie was made.


  • May 6, 2011, 5:37 p.m. CST

    Somebody Stop...

    by professor murder

    ..that Voodoo guy from Beetlejuice from shrinking everyones heads!!!

  • May 6, 2011, 5:38 p.m. CST

    is that viggo moretensen in the 2nd pic?

    by kimbers

  • May 6, 2011, 5:47 p.m. CST

    Dammit... Now I've got that horrible Roxette song in my head!

    by PaddyIrishman

  • May 6, 2011, 5:47 p.m. CST

    Agreed on the great casting...

    by bubcus

  • May 6, 2011, 5:56 p.m. CST

    Horrible movie.

    by jimmy_009


  • May 6, 2011, 5:57 p.m. CST

    I always thought those things looked like

    by Phategod100

    Shaquille O'neil.

  • May 6, 2011, 6 p.m. CST

    They really should've learned!!

    by david starling

    This film was a bad idea from the start, a total car-crash of a pic. It should've served total as a reminder, that games-to-movies do not work. And dammit, they keep on trying. Great puppet work, but a lousy movie.

  • May 6, 2011, 6:03 p.m. CST

    Look out - it's the world according to David Icke!

    by MajorFrontbum

  • May 6, 2011, 6:15 p.m. CST

    About the great casting...

    by Ryan Hoss

    The casting was great. And a lot of people don't know that there were some talented people behind the camera as well. To name a few, you had David Snyder (Blade Runner) as the production designer, and Dean Semler (who won an Oscar for Dances With Wolves) as the DP.

  • May 6, 2011, 6:19 p.m. CST

    Poor Samantha Mathis...

    by WriteForTheEdit

    ...she never really broke out, did she? But god, what a cutie. Loved her in "Broken Arrow." This movie, though... completely insane.

  • I had seen it once as a child and I revisited it recently with friends and a few grams of herb. Good stuff. Absolutely ridiculous.

  • May 6, 2011, 7:06 p.m. CST

    Every person in those pictures...

    by Mechasheeva

    looks horribly depressed.

  • May 6, 2011, 7:19 p.m. CST

    " that games-to-movies do not work. "

    by KilliK

    Μοrtal Kombat worked perfectly so no that is not that common. and where is my Gabriel Knight movie ffs? with Ledger as Gabriel? (in a parallel universe i know)

  • May 6, 2011, 7:30 p.m. CST

    samantha mathis


    yeah what happened? the ideal sweetheart.

  • May 6, 2011, 7:32 p.m. CST



    i know let's put mojo nixon in a kid's movie and then turn him into a huge body with a little reptilian puppet head and we're supposed to sympathize with him.

  • what a mess.

  • Ugh.

  • May 6, 2011, 7:44 p.m. CST

    FACT for what i said.

    by KilliK

    as usual.

  • May 6, 2011, 7:45 p.m. CST

    This movie is so bad...

    by GeorgieBoy

    I literally got ill looking at those photos. Please burn every copy made. Thank you.

  • May 6, 2011, 8:15 p.m. CST

    So. Fucking. Odd.

    by Larry Sellers

    Took all of the bright, fairytale aspects of SMB and flipped it into a dark, dystopian alternate dimension. I don't think there's a scene of the Mushroom Kingdom shot during the day at all except for the desert scenes (?). But there are worse movies to demand that every copy be burned. This was an odd fucking cash in that was actually financially and (I would argue) artistically successful in some of the character and set designs. I mean...there is actually quite a bit of originality when you consider it has fuck all to do with the source material. As for the casting...this is one of those movies where you have to ignore the script to appreciate the acting (something no one should ever have to say). The acting never once took me out of the movie. It was the fact that the writers' only experience playing the video games was looking at the cartridge. I do you go so wrong with such a simple story? This isn't quite the worst adaptation of SMB. Check out the anime adaptations. One of which has Mario jumping INTO a video game to rescue Peach, fully aware of being in his own game.

  • May 6, 2011, 8:16 p.m. CST

    3rd to the last picture

    by klytusnotdead

    fucken hailiourous(spell) I remember watching this movie and as I recall Yoshi and DaBoBomb were kinda cool. end of line

  • May 6, 2011, 8:17 p.m. CST

    I'lll defend Street Fighter (94) to death as well.

    by Larry Sellers

    Cheese heaven, that one is. But earnest cheese.

  • May 6, 2011, 9:12 p.m. CST

    Samantha Mathis is a FOX!

    by CallMeSNAKEimeanPLISKEN

    Had a major thing for her back in the day, Mario then Broken Arrow. Then finding out about her topless scene in Pump Up the Volume.....nice. Like Ronnie the Limo Driver says "T.O.P.L.E.S.S"

  • May 6, 2011, 9:45 p.m. CST

    Yes, it got a cinema release in Ireland...

    by Neil

    Haven't seen it since. Should I watch it gain? I recall King Koopa was blowed up by a Bob-Omb and I was goin' to my mate "That's like a Bob-Omb from the computer game!!!".

  • May 6, 2011, 9:54 p.m. CST

    God bless Ryan Hoss

    by Inexplicable_Nuclear_Balls

    A man who has dedicated his life to running a website about this movie. There really is something for everyone, isn't there?

  • May 6, 2011, 10:12 p.m. CST

    Samantha Mathis played a Dharma Initiative teacher on Lost

    by Nasty In The Pasty

    Most recent thing I remember seeing her in. As for the SMB movie, whose bright idea was to do a megabudget adaptation of an eight-bit Nintendo game in *1993*? The original NES was essentially dead at that point. At least other shameless video game cash-ins like The Wizard and Captain N: The Game Master (I totally wanted to fuck Princess Lana back in the day) both came out at the height of Nintendo-mania in 1989.

  • May 6, 2011, 10:14 p.m. CST

    Fuck all y'all. I love this movie.

    by WolfmanNards

    This movie is just pure fun and the group hate is a shame. The physical effects are creative and the premise of reptiles evolving alongside primates in another dimension is interesting. I love the actors, the music, the action. On top of that, it's quotable as hell. In another generation removed from the cynicism of the current internet culture, this movie will be a beloved, misunderstood classic. Alright ... bring it on.

  • May 6, 2011, 11:30 p.m. CST


    by Caerdwyn

    Blade Runner comparisons aside, SMB the movie reminds me a little of The Fifth Element in that it tries for a fully-realized (or nearly realized) alternate society. You have your whacked-out public (see the street and club scenes), police force, government, technology... dystopian, sure, and all of it is waaay out there, but it also 'works' in the film's setting. It -is- strange, the acting is hammy, but consider the source material... I think they did a pretty good job with making something bright and cartoony into something 'gritty.' Consider the alternative. Would anyone really watch a movie based verbatim on the Mario games?

  • I watched bits and pieces of it many years later, but it almost felt like they decided to cross Mario with Blade Runner/Mad Max, the way the other world is portrayed.

  • I don't think I could have stomached it if i was sitting on the couch trying to devote all my attention.

  • I wasn't/amn't some fanboy with a strict perspective of what a Mario movie "Should Have Been," but that film is Certainly NOT it. It's just not Mario. Super Mario World is filled with large fantasy creatures like flying turtles, walking fire-breathing plants, and angry, bipedal mushrooms. Not humans that Used the be dinosaurs. It's not some morlock town.

  • May 7, 2011, 2:37 a.m. CST

    Here's my take on the troubled film:

    by George Newman

    I wasn't/amn't some fanboy with a strict perspective of what a Mario movie "Should Have Been," but that film is Certainly NOT it. It's just not Mario. Super Mario World is filled with large fantasy creatures like flying turtles, walking fire-breathing plants, and angry, bipedal mushrooms. Not humans that Used the be dinosaurs. <p> When i was a kid, my dad would watch war movies and tv shows (Tour of Duty!), but at times I would complain, because I wanted to watch cartoons. "I want to watch GI Joes!" Dad would reply, "this Is GI JOE, it's the movie." But the characters I saw didnt look like my GI JOEs. I would ask "Is that Duke? Who is that guy? That's supposed to be Cobra?" Dad would assign some of the names on the soldiers in the movie, and I would try to adjust the association in my mind. <p> And That's what Super Mario Bros The Movie feels like: somebody lying to you about what you're watching. That's supposed to be King Koopa? That guy is Toad? Who is that big woman in the red dress? What is going on? Why does this place look so different from my Mario? It is because this was not mario. It was a big, dang, horrible lie; a mean trick on hopeful children.

  • Back in the 90s I've seen on tv German movie about witchcraft in modern Cologne. The movie was medicore but director tried to copy the mood of GK games, even with adventure-games steady camera shoots just like in GK2 TBW.

  • May 7, 2011, 5:06 a.m. CST

    I was about 10 when I saw this movie.....

    by Super Joker

    Somehow it made sense then. I understood, even as a 10 year old, that it was an interpretation. I didn't get angry - this was a time before nerd rage and before non-contributing sponge-cunts populated the world and started complaining about insignificant things like their iPhone losing its signal for five fucking minutes. I enjoyed the movie. I enjoyed Jurassic Park that year too. For a ten year old kid - that was a fucking amazing summer for movies. I appreciate the film even now. How the fuck are you supposed to actually do a Mario film anyway? My beef isn't with videogame movies - it's when Hollywood chooses to adapt videogames that are primarily an interactive experience and are sold purely for that experience, into movies which remove that interactive element. Look at the games that were turned into movies - Mortal Kombat, Street Fighter, Mario, Doom, Resident Evil - those games all hinged on you taking part, and the plots were merely a little bit of glue to tie each stage of the game together. None of these franchises have plots which. It is rather pointless making videogame movies. If you look at the likes of Uncharted - that's a game designed to make you feel like Indiana Jones, in a way the shitty Indiana Jones games have failled to convey. There's no point watching the movie of Uncharted - watch Indiana Jones! Half-Life, again, is famous because you experience those events in the first person, it wouldn't work as a movie, because the sole premise of the game is to take part first hand in a cinematic, believable world. If you make a movie of Half-Life, you would have to tug at the thread of the idea itself, and pretty quickly the whole thing would unravel and you'll end up with generic action franchise movie #1452. Metal Gear Solid is loosely based on almost every action movie from Terminator to James Bond, and the concept of that game was to actually take part in an action movie, and is almost an interactive movie itself. Heavy Rain, at first glance, would make you believe it would make a good movie, until you realise that it's based on a ton of movies that already exist and the idea is simply to TAKE PART. Zelda, Halo, Grand Theft Auto etc they're all games that are first and foremost supposed to be interactive. The act of removing that interactive element immediately handicaps them. It's like telling an olympic swimmer to take part in the 100m sprint - and then getting pissed off when they get smoked. I'm personally fed up of the notion that videogames are subservient to movies - that you haven't really made it big as a videogame unless a load of bloated premadonnas have acted out a script based on the loose concept that you wrote down on a beer mat because you were more interested in crafting a compelling interactive experience. So having said all that - at least the Mario filmmakers did seem to understand that they couldn't just port Mario over to the big screen, so they went apeshit with it - and that film is the result. Stuck between a rock and a hard place - I know I wouldn't know where to start converting Mario to the big screen. Princess gets kidnapped, Mario and Luigi enter a weird world full of obstacles to save her - that's the plot of pretty much all of the Mario games save for a few, and the Mario movie delivered that. And the makers did play the game - the whole film is peppered with references to even the most obscure characters from the games. Those are my thoughts anyway.

  • May 7, 2011, 5:22 a.m. CST

    Personally, I really liked the film

    by photoboy

    I saw the film on VHS, long after it became clear it had nothing to do with the Mario games, so I watched it with very low expectations. Going into it knowing it had little to do with Mario beyond the names meant that I didn't watch it expecting a Super Mario movie, I just watched expecting a standard adventure film, and I think in those respects it was extremely successful. Dennis Hopper was fantastic and funny in every scene, the production design (while nothing to do with Mario) looked awesome with loads of cool designs like the cop cars and the fungus, and once again the underrated Alan Silvestri delivered an excellent score. Frankly, I think this film stands alongside adventure films like the Goonies and Bill & Ted quite well, but only if you're able to ignore the fact that it's supposed to be related to the Mario games. Once you ignore that it's a lot, lot more fun. Heck, I can even enjoy John Leguizamo in this, and he normally annoys the fuck out of me.

  • May 7, 2011, 6:42 a.m. CST

    Why have they never given this another try?

    by RedBull_Werewolf

    I mean Mario is still a very recognizable brand and with advancment in CGI they could give us a real mushroom kingdom I'd prefer live action but even in the right filmakers hands a CGI cartoon could be well done

  • May 7, 2011, 8:04 a.m. CST


    by Sprinky

    These were the years that it was cool to turn games into movies. This might make an excellent triple feature with "Double Dragon" and that crazy movie "Streetfighter". 3 bad movies and a lot of fun.

  • May 7, 2011, 8:09 a.m. CST

    Sadly, I recognized the headline.

    by Darkman

    Saw this when I was 12. Total guilty pleasure. Adding to the list of talented collaborators behind the scenes: a fantastic score by Alan Silvestri. <br><br> The chapter about this film in John Leguizamo's "Pimps, Hos, Playa Hatas and All My Hollywood Friends" is hilarious.

  • May 7, 2011, 8:30 a.m. CST

    Thanks Quint, those were great.

    by Jeffrey

  • Chapter 8.

  • May 7, 2011, 10:20 a.m. CST

    Exactly, Photoboy

    by WolfmanNards

    I think it is important to remove the film from the context that is a game adaptation. As a standalone adventure movie, there is nothing wrong with it at all. Let's face it, the filmmakers had very little to work with. There is NO story in Super Mario Brothers games. There are only concepts, which were incorporated into the movie just fine.

  • May 7, 2011, 11:46 a.m. CST

    There are bad films

    by proevad

    and then there are films that look so horrible, I haven't even tried to view them--this is one. Never saw it. Never will.

  • May 7, 2011, 12:36 p.m. CST

    Shit on a shingle.

    by UltraTron

  • So, first off, I'm an amateur screenwriter, and it's non-solicited. It's just a story that's been nagging at me since I saw King of Kong and I'm finally putting it all down. I don't expect anything to come of it, but I think it's a good story. The thing I learned from King of Kong was that Mario never saved the girl in Donkey Kong. They didn't have the memory or whatever to create and ending scene, so Mario just craps out and it records your high score. So I thought of this from a character standpoint. He took it on himself to rescue this girl Pauline, and he failed. That's got to weigh on a guy pretty heavy. From there I made one presupposition and it tied together the original three Mario games: Donkey Kong, Mario Bros. and Super Mario Bros. In my story, Pauline wasn't Mario's girlfriend, she was Luigi's. And Luigi hasn't forgiven his brother for losing her. I've also given a back story to Bowser, the Princess, the King, and the Toads. It's pretty ridiculous how much thought I've put into it. I did my research, and I think I've stayed true to the characters.

  • May 7, 2011, 1:18 p.m. CST

    I WAS first, but all I said was Mojo Nixon!

    by deelzbub

    guess I should have said "first" and then my post wouldn't have been deleted. I'm guessing whoever deleted my post thought I was posting off-topic and had no idea Mojo Nixon was the true star of this movie.

  • May 7, 2011, 1:44 p.m. CST

    A Mario Bros movie could work...

    by Wolverine's Dad

    Just not if you take it very seriously. It's Alice in Wonderland with a fat plumber.

  • May 7, 2011, 2:37 p.m. CST

    There's never been a good video game movie

    by theyreflockingthisway

    It doesn't mean it can't be done, but they always change their source material so much that it's unrecognisable. If I made video game movies Mario would have been an animation (CG, but since this was 1993, I guess hand drawn), Resident Evil would have been set in the mansion with the game's cast, Silent Hill would star Harry Mason, Tomb Raider would feature some tomb raiding, Street Fighter would focus on Ryu and Ken and The House of the Dead would ... OK I'll leave it there.

  • May 7, 2011, 5:34 p.m. CST

    Leguizamo's book

    by PedroM

    Read the SMB chapter, funny stuff. Didn't the studio fire the directors halfway through shooting and hired Roland Joffé? Btw, I went to see it in the theater and liked it, back then. Even bought the novelization.

  • May 7, 2011, 6:25 p.m. CST

    Clarification on the directors and Roland Joffe's role

    by Ryan Hoss

    Roland Joffe and Jake Eberts were the producers on Super Mario Bros. from the very start. They actually attempted two other interpretations of the film that failed before ultimately going with Rocky Morton and Annabel Jankel as the directing duo for the film that we got. There was incredible tension on the set throughout shooting--the schedule went over and the budget was getting out of hand. From a few accounts from people that worked on the film it seems as if Morton and Jankel were "asked to leave." At that point, Dean Semler (the director of photography) was made director and finished shooting the rest of the movie, with some assistance from other startup units headed by VFX supervisor Chris Woods and production designer David L. Snyder. Rocky and Annabel were brought back in later in post-production. For more juicy info on that stuff, might I suggest a few of the interviews on Richard Edson (Spike): Mojo Nixon (Toad): Mark Jeffrey Miller (Street Vendor/Lizard Man) and Michael Harding (Goomba):

  • I just remember the production design being pretty tight on this movie; the koopas were pretty nifty and all that, but wondering what the fuck any of this really truly had to do with the videogames.

  • May 8, 2011, 12:30 p.m. CST

    Loved Loved Loved this as a child

    by lucky slevin


  • Personally I would've loved to have seen continuations of the above two, but am not too surprised that nothing ever came of them. I do remember everyone on my block loving Dolph Lundgren's He-Man opus, always watching it when it came on showtime, so not having Skeletor fulfill his "I'll be back!" statement after the credits of Masters was kind of head scratching.

  • Yes, they actually put lyrics to the famed Super Mario theme song in case you didn't know. And I just looked this up and it took TWO people to direct this, although now I feel like going to watch it because Lance Henriksen is Princess Daisy's father, though from what I've heard he only appears towards the end after being re evolved or whatever and has like one line.

  • then again, considering spvtw is considered a flop, he'll prolly have to do another "safe" movie before being given reins over this.