Why Pixels Cut Super Mario From Its Ending

In every movie there is footage that doesn’t make it into the final cut. For a film like Pixels which is heavily reference laden, the point of the movie is to fill it with nostalgic video game characters. That means that some of those scenes don’t make it into the finished film. Such is the case with an original ending that would have included Super Mario.

Speaking with ScreenCrush, Pixels director Chris Columbus spoke about a closing scene with the famous plumber that they ended up not using:

We tried it. There was a moment we even did a preview of it, we thought it was interesting but we wanted to kind of use him somewhere else. I don’t want to spoil the fact that he may be somewhere else in the film...

Columbus went on to note that the appearance Mario does make in the film actually turned out to be a bigger moment for the audience than the ending with Mario.

The original ending, found in an earlier version of the script, would have apparently left Mario as the one remaining pixelated alien standing atop the Washington Monument, ready to rain down some hell. We assume via fire flower. This obviously would have been the setup for a potential sequel. While the box office will be the ultimate determination of whether or not that happens, we’re not holding our breath. Reviews have been pretty lackluster overall. Maybe they had a feeling that teasing a sequel would be overdoing it a bit. With all the various characters that do make it into the film, it’s hard to tell what would be left for a sequel anyway. Columbus describes the conclusion as a Where’s Waldo like mass of characters. Where exactly do you go after that?

Mario does survive to make another cameo in the film. Donkey Kong has been prominent in the trailers, so it’s no surprise that it’s that version of the character that you see during the climactic battle. We’d have to turn in our geek card however if we didn’t point out that technically that Donkey Kong character is named Jumpman, not Mario, so it isn’t really the same thing. Just sayin’. Check out the interview below.

Lack of real Mario aside Pixels is still full of all the 80’s arcade nostalgia you could possibly want. The movie hits theaters today. You can read our review here.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis.  Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.