1993's Super Mario Bros. movie is generally regarded as a failure — both commercially and critically — but it has nevertheless gone on to become something of a cult classic.
However, we're not sure the same would ever have been said about Max Landis' proposed movie adaptation of Super Mario World, which he wrote when he was 19 and now admits is "not a movie" and that it "sucks".
The script — which can be downloaded and digested here — is over 400 pages long, and when you consider that a page of script roughly translates as a minute of screen time, that gives you some idea of how unfilmable this project would be. Running time is just one of its problems however; the script includes pretty much every Nintendo character ever (even Funky Kong) and has — according to Landis himself — terrible pacing.
Landis — son of the director John Landis — wrote 2012 sci-fi thriller Chronicle, and feels that his dalliance with Nintendo's famous plumber was very much a moment of experimentation:
My Super Mario World won’t ever really live up to its own grandiose ambitions. But then again, Super Mario World was never mine to begin with. What Mario is, I think, is an exploration. It is, at the most primal level, a writer exploring their own limits; I wrote it not because I felt I should, but rather, to see if I COULD.
“They might be giants,” said Don Quixote, charging at windmills.
I'm still charging at windmills. But these days I try to keep them under 120 pages.
Are you crazy enough to actually read all of this script? Do you think Landis is being too hard on himself? Share your thoughts with a comment.