Illumination and Nintendo Team Up Again for New Animated ‘Super Mario Bros.’ Movie

The success of last year’s animated film “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” has led to a partnership renewal between Illumination and Nintendo. The two companies have announced they will collaborate on a new movie set in the world of Super Mario Bros., set to hit theaters worldwide on April 3, 2026.

While specific plot details are being kept under wraps for now, the film promises to expand the iconic Mushroom Kingdom and its cast of beloved characters beyond just Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach and Bowser. According to Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto, “This time we’re thinking about broadening Mario’s world further.”

The new Super Mario Bros. animated movie does not have an official title yet, but it will be directed by Aaron Horvath and Michael Jelenic, who helmed the 2023 blockbuster. Matthew Fogel will return as the screenwriter. Chris Meledandri from Illumination and Miyamoto will produce, continuing their close collaboration that helped capture the spirit of the games so successfully in the first film.

Illumination founder Meledandri said in a video announcement with Miyamoto, “It’ll have a bright and fun story.” Miyamoto added the tease, “We’ll let you know once we’re at the stage where we’re ready to share more.”

The 2023 “Super Mario Bros. Movie” was a monster hit, grossing over $1.3 billion at the global box office to become the second highest-grossing film of the year. Its success represented a major turnaround from the 1993 live-action “Super Mario Bros.” movie, which was critically panned.

By reteaming with Nintendo’s gaming mastermind Miyamoto, Illumination seems determined to keep pleasing Mario fans by honoring the source material with this new animated adventure. The companies will co-finance the production, which Universal Pictures will distribute worldwide.

Illumination has created many iconic animated franchises like Despicable Me, The Secret Life of Pets, and Sing. Their next release is Despicable Me 4 arriving on July 3rd. Nintendo’s other major game series include Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda, Metroid and Splatoon.

The announcement came fittingly on “Mario Day,” March 10th, which Nintendo uses to celebrate the popular character. With a prime Easter 2026 release date locked in, anticipation will build over the next three years to see how the filmmakers “broaden” the Mushroom Kingdom.