No history of video games is complete without mentioning “Super Mario Bros.” The franchise began way back in the medium’s infancy with the 1981 arcade release “Donkey Kong,” before it blew up in popularity with the worldwide release of the Nintendo Entertainment System (or its Japanese counterpart, the Famicom) in 1985. Even then, critics were positive that “Super Mario Bros.” would be an international phenomenon.
“Super Mario Bros.” has remained a staple of Nintendo’s carefully curated brand throughout the ’90s, 2000s, and 2010s. The series has spawned countless spin-offs, from “Mario Kart” to “Mario Party,” with some of these series ranking on their own among the best-selling video game franchises of all time. Collectively, over 800 million video game units have been sold, with the series’ most recent entry, “Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury” on Nintendo Switch, selling just under 10 million units in 2021.
Predictably, the series has been prime material for adaptation into an animated film for a very long time. Its colorful aesthetics, unique world, and lovable cast of characters not only appeal to kids, but to nostalgic adults who grew up with the franchise’s earlier entries. It’s no surprise that the series’ success in the video game sphere has translated to its success at the box office, as there’s no denying that the “Super Mario Bros.” kingdom stands strong, even today.