Here Are Some Fascinating Facts About ‘The Wizard’ For Its 25th Anniversary

Senior Contributor
12.15.14 21 Comments
Twenty-five years ago today, the most infamous Fred Savage movie ever made hit screens. Widely mocked as a ninety-minute Nintendo commercial, and tepidly received at the box office, The Wizard would still go on to become a cult classic, Power Glove and all. So, to celebrate, here are some fascinating facts about the movie.

Nintendo Was Not As Heavily Involved As You Might Think…

Aside from providing props and, of course, Super Mario Bros. 3, by all accounts, Nintendo stepped aside and let the filmmakers produce the movie they wanted to make. None of the endorsements, including the single most famous line in the movie, were required by the company. In fact, some references are even removed: For example, a character is reading what’s clearly a Nintendo Power magazine, but the title has been changed to just “Power.”

…But Maybe They Should Have Been.

The movie has a litany of technical errors about video games that gamers find oddly endearing, not least because the movie’s quite consistent in getting almost everything wrong.

And They Weren’t The Only Promotional Partner, Either

Ever wonder why there’s a Tom Petty poster on the side of an arcade game cabinet? Or why our heroes escape in a Hostess truck at one point? There’s a reason: Everything from the eyewear to the shots of Cosmopolitan magazine were paid promotional plugs. Universal was convinced that Savage and Nintendo would pack kids into the theater, and weren’t shy about using that to sell lots of product placement.

Yes, That Really Is Rilo Kiley Frontwoman Jenny Lewis

Despite rumors to the contrary, Lewis actually doesn’t mind people remembering her role in The Wizard. Although, for obvious reasons, she prefers to talk about her musical career.

Director Todd Holland Got Hired In A Weekend

Holland admits he hates video games, but that didn’t stop him from being hired to direct. He notes he was put in charge of the movie within two days of interviewing for it, thanks in part to Fred Savage’s schedule with The Wonder Years making a quick pre-production a necessity.

Around The Web