Chris Pratt isn’t letting the haters get him down.
The actor, who stars as the titular Mario in the upcoming “The Super Mario Bros. Movie”, had the perfect answer when asked about the criticism he received after it was announced in September 2021 that he had been cast as the main hero of the Mushroom Kingdom.
“Oh, I totally get it, man. There’s a passionate fan base and I’m one of the fans. I get it,” he told Gizmodo during a recent interview. “Mostly, people don’t want something like this to get screwed up. They’re precious about it. They’re careful. And I’m grateful for that.”
Prior to bringing the role to life, Pratt, who stars in the animated retelling of the classic video game alongside Chris Day (Luigi) and Anya Taylor Joy (Princess Peach), revealed that he wasn’t too nervous because besides Mario’s instantly recognizable blue overalls, red cap and trademark moustache, the character “is largely undefined.”
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“It kind of reduces the amount of trepidation that I personally felt coming in,” he said.
“I mean, you have great reach. Anytime you have IP like this, it’s really something that’s almost required these days to create a big tentpole type of movie for these studios. You have to have some kind of reach,” the actor explained. “The fact that this hasn’t been a major motion picture recently was a really great thing.”
“And you’re right, there’s not that much familiarity beyond just what their costumes look like and a handful of catchphrases that you might hear,” he told the outlet. “And knowing that it was Illumination, I was like, ‘Boy, I think this is destined to be a home run.’ So I was really, really grateful to be a part of it.”
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Elsewhere, the “Guardians of the Galaxy” star shared how “Super Mario Bros.” compares to the other franchises he’s starred in like the Marvel Cinematic Universe and “Jurassic Park”.
While he “loved ‘Jurassic Park’ as a kid,” noting that he “was 13 years old when it came out [and it was] a big part of my childhood,” Pratt revealed that “nothing really compares” to “Super Mario Bros.”, which also meant a lot to him growing up, if not more.
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“I played this game for hundreds of hours. Probably maybe 1000 hours of my childhood spent. And so like the sound of hitting a coin, catching a flower, hearing the score, every little detail of the movie, it was like I was hypnotized by it as a child,” he said. “So to see it now, I mean, just nothing really compares to it in terms of my relationship to the brand. It’s pretty, pretty cool. Pretty incredible.”
“Also, I care just as much as everyone else to make sure that doesn’t get screwed up,” he added.
As for plans for a sequel, Pratt thinks it “could potentially be,” but admitted he hasn’t “thought that far.”
“The Super Mario Bros. Movie” hits theatres on April 5.