‘Pixels’ Director Chris Columbus on Why Mario Was Cut From the Film
There are a lot of recognizable cameos in Adam Sandler’s Pixels, from 80s video game characters — Paperboy, Q-bert — to actual 80s personalities — Hall & Oates, Madonna. But, for all the cameos that are included in the film, equally as notable was who didn’t make the cut. We caught up with director Chris Columbus who shed some light on some characters — both real and fictional — that were left on the cutting room floor.
The original script for Pixels ends with a post-credits scene revealing one major video game character still surviving and ready to cause more destruction. From the script:
PAN UP AND SPIN AROUND, so we face the Washington Monument, damaged but still standing. When we reach the top, we see a small figure on top, hands on hips, watching all this from high above.
We zoom in on his face, and he smiles. CUT TO BLACK
But, in the interview above, Columbus says that though they tested that scene, they ultimately decided against it. You can, if you’re looking closely enough, catch a very quick glimpse of Mario (the Donkey Kong version, not the Super Mario Bros. version) in the background.
In addition to Mario, Columbus says they wanted to get both Mr. T and Michael Jackson’s likeness to appear in the film (the aliens send messages to Earth via videos of famous 80s celebrities), but were unable to get either one to work. Hall and Oates do make an appearance in the film and each of the classic 80s rockers actually filmed new scenes with motion capture so they could be de-aged to look like it was back in 1982.
You can get more behind-the-scenes details on the film (including updates on both Goonies 2 and Gremlins 2) in the video above.
Pixels opens in theaters today.