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Redstar

Exclusive Super Mario Bros. The Movie Interviews

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I haven't been posting around here as much as I was because I've been focusing on working for another site. Generally I work for different sites in either writing or mediating dialogue with other sites/people. One of my recent projects in this area is for the Super Mario Bros. The Movie Archive in mediating interviews with members of the cast and production of the 1993 Super Mario Bros. movie.

I'm aware that not many people seem to enjoy the movie and that this sentiment extends even here. However, the movie does have its fans. We appreciate the movie for what it was and what it was trying to do. If you're familiar with the production or any of the early scripts you can understand the turmoil the movie went through simply to get into theaters. Tons of footage was ultimately cut due to time and budget that we're only just recently uncovering. While most of this footage was unnecessary, some of it would have lent more towards the world the movie was creating. These interviews are a way of uncovering the original vision for the movie.

The first interview I managed to set up is with Mojo Nixon, the actor for the movie's Toad. It's a real riot. It gives you a look into just how crazy the production really was as well as what kind of people the actors (Dennis Hopper, Bob Hoskins, John Leguizamo) were onset. You can read it on the site here.

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Two weeks later I conducted my own interview with Mark Jeffrey Miller and Michael Harding. Mark played both the 'fried Tweeter vendor' that you can see in the background of some of the Koopa Square scenes and a 'Lizard Man' that was cut from the final film. Mike was one of the four lead actors that acted as a Goomba.

I conducted this nearly hour-and-a-half interview myself and spent three days transcribing the entire conversation before finally being able to put it up on the site. But it was certainly worth it. This interview reveals many stories involving the cast and crew, including the turmoil of production, the agonizing time it took to film something only to have it removed from the final film, the near death of several actors, and the mutual dislike towards directors Rocky Morton and Annabel Jankel.

This interview is everything fans of the movie have come to expect from those involved: a deeply personal experience of both friendliness and sheer disgust at how the production went. The way Mark and Mike reminisce almost brings us into the production ourselves and makes us a part of the experience. It's just a brilliant look into the past from two men that were there and saw it all from their own perspectives. It can be read on the site here.

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We have many more future interviews lined-up, including more actors, special effects workers and animatronic puppeteers, makeup artists, and even the film's editor. We've also just recently interviewed the writers of the original fantasy script and one of the writers final hard-edged science fiction script. Neither are up on the site yet as we're building up to that point, but you won't believe the process that went into developing the world of the movie and how many Mario references were ultimately cut due to budgetary concerns.

We create a thread a week prior to every interview so that the community can suggest questions to ask, so any of you are free to join the forums to get involved in these interviews. Otherwise just stick around here and enjoy them as I continue to post. Feel free to read the interviews and comment either on them or the movie. We've had some good reaction so far, so hope you all like it as well. :D

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That's kind of a neat project you have going on there. Yeah I'm one of those are not a fan of the movie. Though I am a fan of the horrid Street Fighter movie.

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Too bad you didn't get a chance to talk with Dennis Hopper before he passed away. Or did you? Probably not as likely to get to him because he was a relatively famous actor anyway?

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Dennis' passing is why we're doing this. It was something Ryan would "get to" at some point, but then Dennis died and I realized that if I didn't lend my services the site would never get as far as it has. It's very unfortunate that we've missed our chance with Dennis Hopper, but we do have plans to speak with Bob Hoskins, John Leguizamo, and Samantha Mathis, if they'd let us. We will be speaking with Richard Edson and a few others not long from now, so we are getting some of the lead cast.

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Yeah. He passed earlier this year. We made a big deal out of it and we're hoping that through these interviews we can pay homage to him. There are some great stories coming out about him and his interactions with the rest of the production, so that certainly makes it worth it.

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This website is awesome. I'm gonna have to watch the movie again, now..

The interview with Mojo Nixon is great, so many laughs.

I'd like to add that I have some of the cards in a box downstairs(I think I even have Mojo's 3D card). If you'd like I can scan them since my scanner is up and working at the moment.

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Thanks! The interview with Mojo really was great. Even though it was the first interview I set up it has continued to be by far one of our best. Ryan and I actually interviewed Parker Bennett, one of the original scriptwriters, last weekend and it may even match Mojo's, though we'll have to let the fans and everyone else decide that. It was very informative about the story's development and concepts that never made it in or aren't apparent in the actual movie, to say the least.

We have a few upcoming interviews, but one of our bigger ones is with Mark Goldblatt, the film's editor. He should have a lot to say about the numerous deleted scenes. And that's a big deal for fans as tons of backstory, characterization, and subplots were removed that would have made for a much better experience. All so they could get the run-time and rating down. Those cuts also necessitated the horrid animated prologue, which makes us hate it even more.

A few members on the board have the full set of those cards, myself included, but if you can get high-quality scans go for it--we could use them for the site. :)

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It's been awhile since I've posted in this thread but the project is still ongoing. We've had several high-profile interviews in recent months, but unfortunately have yet to post them onto the site because we need to wait for the interviewees' next availability to finalize things.

However, we have had a couple of minor interviews since that might be of interest.

The first is with Dave Nelson, the engineer that headed the project to build Yoshi. His answers are a bit sparse, but he was able to relate the startling fact that the Jurassic Park production had actually visited their shop to see what they were doing and were considering hiring them all to outsource some dino-work. Didn't work out, though. It can be read here.

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Our next interview is a lot more informative and certainly more fascinating. Rob Burman, the designer that molded the various de-evolved Koopa prosthetics, shared his full experiences and many photos of the prosthetics. No matter your feelings on the movie, you can't deny how cool T. rex-Koopa looked. They put a lot of work into something that ultimately only had 13 seconds of film-time. It can be read here.

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Finally, this is a bit off-topic but perhaps some of you might be interested in knowing that we've updated our Toys section to showcase every toy they made. Be sure to check out the fine craftmanship ERTL put into their line of toys for the movie here.

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It's kind of cool.. if you compare that large Koopa head with the gnarly teeth to the original Super Mario Bros Koopa, it's actually pretty similar.

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Looking forward to these updates to your site for sure!

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I need to get my hands on those toys. Though Luigi is a bit buff. Same mistake they made with the newer Star Wars toys.

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I need to get my hands on those toys. Though Luigi is a bit buff. Same mistake they made with the newer Star Wars toys.

You think Luigi being buff is a little strange? A lot of the Luigi figures are actually straight black. xD

eBay is your best bet, obviously, but the Crash Action Police Car and Devo Chamber are incredibly rare. The non-Mario, Luigi, and Koopa figures are also technically rarer, but since they're not the main figures they usually sell for less. The ERTL catalog is currently selling Iggy and Spike. See here.

It's kind of cool.. if you compare that large Koopa head with the gnarly teeth to the original Super Mario Bros Koopa, it's actually pretty similar.

It's not just the jagged teeth, now that you've made the comparison. The simplicity of the sprite allows for a lot of "parallels," such as the horns easily being construed as the T. rex's brow-ridges. The T. rex also has lots of little bumps and rounded spikes along its head and neck, which is reminiscent of Koopa's shell. Nothing more than a coincidence, of course, but cool nonetheless.

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These interviews are awesome as hell, Redstar! Even though I'm not a fan of the film myself, I always enjoy seeing the delight that fans of anything can bring when they're writing things as intelligent and well-conducted as what can be found on your site. Please keep up the good work, because I can't wait to see more. Your enthusiasm for this project is infectious. :)

*huggles*

Areala

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Thank you, Areala! The movie may not be very popular but they probably put more thought into making it than any video game movie that has come since. It's a fascinating project to look at. That'll become more and more apparent with each new interview we put up. :)

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Without a doubt, Iggy and Spike are two of the most popular characters in the entire movie. We were absolutely delighted to have the opportunity to interview one half of that duo in Richard Edson, who played Spike. Richard discusses not only his experience on the film and his thoughts on it now, but also some really great additional stories: ghosts, dancers, and Dennis Hopper all make appearances here. Enjoy. It can be read here.

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BTSsmb2sm.jpg?1304720443

Our site was featured on Ain't it Cool News in their "Behind the Scenes Pic of the Day" column and Kotaku in an article entitled "Behind the Scenes of the Most Disappointing Game Movie Ever Made."

We've pulled in nearly 100k views via the Kotaku article alone, so there's definitely interest in the movie. We just need to keep up with these updates and put the movie on center-stage so Disney will take notice. There are some larger resolution photographs on that page than the ones here on the site, so be sure to head over to AICN to check them out. Thanks to Quint and Luke for posting those!

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A bit off topic, but I felt I should return to let you know that we've received an astounding increase in traffic due to our latest updates. We now garner as much as 100k hits a single weekend for our more high-profile updates.

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Our latest was four early scripts for the movie, including the original Fantasy/Comedy script, the initial Sci-Fi/Fantasy pitch, the Ghostbusters-inspired Sci-Fi/Comedy draft, the Die Hard-inspired Sci-Fi/Action draft and finally the Mad Max-inspired Sci-Fi/Action Draft.

These scripts providing a fascinating look into the various early visions for the project and how they were, for lack of a better word, "dumbed-down" due to budgetary, time and rating constraints. (We blame Disney) Check them out HERE!

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All those ideas, and no one thought of that we'd be happy with a feature length version of the animated SMB Super Show? It worked for the original Transformers...

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All those ideas, and no one thought of that we'd be happy with a feature length version of the animated SMB Super Show? It worked for the original Transformers...

That would probably be terrible.

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Parker Bennett and Terry Runté were given the daunting task of wrangling Rocky Morton and Annabel Jankel's revitalized concept for Super Mario Bros. into a cohesive story. Their creativity and drive to make an intriguing screenplay led to an intense collaborative effort with the directors, resulting in a story that laid the foundation for the rest of the project.

While Terry is unfortunately no longer with us, a piece of him lives on through Parker's detailed look back on the film's creative process. Read on and learn how they helped make the film into what it is; whether an instant failure or an eventual success, they tried. No one can deny that.

Read it HERE!

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