The fallout from the massive Sony Pictures email leak in late 2014 continued after WikiLeaks began hosting the infamous collection of messages and attachments on Thursday. As a result, some of the leak’s smaller revelations have come to light. Below is a series of messages about an interesting plan from Sony Pictures: acquiring the film rights to the Super Smash Bros. game franchise and other Nintendo properties.
Two messages addressed to former Sony Pictures co-chairman Amy Pascal, who resigned shortly after the leak, referred to Nintendo’s fan-service fighting series by name. One, sent in February 2014, referred to a “full court press” about the series, along with a meeting with producer Avi Arad who was “intending to meet his Nintendo man (whom he’s been courting for a few years) . years) when he goes to Japan.” The other, sent directly to Arad by Pascal, was a link in November to a story about the then-upcoming Amiibo toy line, which she described as an “interesting bit about Smash Brothers”.
An untitled email conversation in February between Arad and Pascal was more vague; it referred to a “five-year chase” that attempted to secure the movie rights of characters in the Mario, Zelda, and Donkey Kong series – all of which appear in Smash Bros., among other games. Another vague email, sent by Arad to Pascal in July, mentioned a trip he was going to take to Japan: “I’m going to try and bring back a little plumber,” he wrote. “I think we could all use our pipes cleaned.” He then asked if Pascal was also interested in Pokemon, “the other property I’m working on with Nintendo,” adding that he was looking forward to “our big, big project.”
Other emails noted Sony Pictures’ aggressive plans to release movies from both its own internal properties (Not charted, Gran Turismo) and third parties (BioShock, Metal Gear solid), but the idea of Sony continuing a movie that combines pretty much every major franchise from one of its major Japanese gaming competitors seems like the stuff of frenzied boardroom daydreams rather than a realistic deal. Our search for character names and other expressions turned up nothing to confirm that Sony Pictures had come up with a Smash Bros. movie rights pitch for Nintendo.
“The proud father of Mario the animated film”
This news comes on top of Arad’s bold claim in October, in which he told Pascal that he was “the proud father of Mario the animated movie.” That email was reported shortly after the December email leak, but the Wikileaks dump contains the photos of Arad and Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto, along with another of Arad and Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata. We posted the Miyamoto above.
Other gaming-related tidbits in the dump include conversations about the upcoming Adam Sandler gaming-related feature pixels (including internal dialogue about securing the rights to the Donkey Kong character for that movie), PowerPoint presentations about successful gaming links with movie franchises, and attempts to acquire the movie rights to Sonic the Hedgehog. The latest deal mentioned complications over Sega’s reluctance to move forward if Columbia Pictures were acquired by “a competitor of theirs”, although the email admitted that Sega “accepts the current Sony/PlayStation situation”.