Chris Pratt’s voice as Mario is “phenomenal,” says one of the men who has the most to gain if that’s true. But Pratt likely won’t be putting on Mario’s familiar fake Italian accent for the majority of the film.
When asked to defend the casting of Chris Pratt (a white American man best known as the Guardians of the Galaxy’s Star-Lord) as Mario (a denizen of the Mushroom Kingdom previously voiced by a white American man of French descent attempting to sound like an Italian plumber from Brooklyn at the request of the character’s Japanese creators, just so we’re clear), producer and Illumination CEO Chris Meledandri suggested to TooFab that it’s OK because:
- Meledandri himself is an Italian American.
- Charlie Day, the actor playing Luigi, “actually comes from Italian heritage,” so they’re covered there.
- They’re not going to lean heavily into the “It’s-a-me, Mario!” fake accent in the movie.
“We cover it in the movie, so you’ll see we definitely nod to that, but that’s not the tenor of the performance throughout the film,” says Meledandri.
I’m not quite sure how we got to this point, but I’m enjoying the show! I suppose we’ll just have to wait and see why Pratt got cast as Mario when the movie arrives in December 2022.
Oh, and he’s also playing Garfield.