The Super Mario Bros. Movie stars Chris Pratt and Charlie Day have opened up about using accents inspired by The Sopranos and Goodfellas when trying different voices for Mario and Luigi. The duo voice the brothers in the film, with Day’s Luigi being captured by Bowser at the movie’s outset. Pratt’s Mario voice has come under scrutiny by many in the lead-up to the film’s release, with some disappointment in his lack of a high-pitched Italian accent
Speaking with Entertainment Weekly, Pratt and Day revealed that their initial accents for Mario and Luigi in The Super Mario Bros. Movie were comparable to The Sopranos and Goodfellas. The actors talked joyfully about how they kept trying out different accents until they finally settled on something that felt just right. Check out what Pratt and Day had to say below:
Day: “We tried different things, different voices. Every now and then they would say, ‘Charlie, maybe a little less Goodfellas in this one’ — I’m like, ‘Alright! I think you’re wrong, but fine!’ — until they landed on something they liked.”
Pratt: “For a minute, I walked in and they were like, ‘That’s a little New Jersey. You’re doing a Tony Soprano thing.'”
Why Mario’s Movie Voice Is Still Controversial
Pratt’s portrayal of Mario has been controversial since the first trailer for The Super Mario Bros. Movie dropped in October 2022. Mario franchise fans lamented that Pratt was not doing the high-pitched Italian accent often associated with the character. However, Pratt later revealed his accurate Mario accent, showcasing that the decision to make Mario’s voice different was done in the film’s service and not to erase it from the character.
The fact that Pratt and Day considered accents similar to The Sopranos or Goodfellas indicates they wanted to give a sense of Italian-inspired personality to Mario and Luigi’s voices. However, doing so may have negated other film aspects by having the movie’s major focus be the character’s voices. In reality, promotional material for The Super Mario Bros. Movie prioritizes Easter eggs to the Mario games, which many critics have said make up the bulk of the film.
Despite not using Italian accents when portraying Mario and Luigi, Pratt and Day are talented actors with strong film and TV resumes that highlight their ability to voice the Mario brothers. It’s likely that, despite not having the same types of voices in the film as the characters have in the games, their versions of Mario and Luigi will still be a memorable treat for game fans. It appears they are also dedicated to the movie as well, something that will no doubt help in The Super Mario Bros. Movie‘s box office success.