The deal, according to a new report from the Wall Street Journal, has been in the works for more than a year.
According to "one person close to the talks", the largest issue in the negotiations has been making Nintendo feel confident that it will be involved in the creative process. Mario creator and video game guru Shigeru Miyamoto has been a part of these talks with Illumination, and will likely be a producer for the film.
Nintendo is hesitant to make trade deals after several awful third-party video games almost destroyed them in the 90s.
Neither Nintendo or Illumination Pictures commented on the Journal's report, but it's not that much of a stretch.
The project is apparently in early development at Illumination's Paris studio Mac Guff, which is primarily responsible for the Despicable Me films. With the recent release of Super Mario Odyssey for the Nintendo Switch on October 27, TheDominoKing chose to craft a domino tribute to the 3D game - and after two months of continuous work, the results pretty much speak for themselves.
The only feature-length movie that Mario and company have fostered comes in the way of the live-action Super Mario Brothers of 1993, which many people today often try to forget ever existed.
While there's nothing official yet, the paper goes on to note that Illumination Entertainment, home of the Minions, is "close" to an agreement with Nintendo to use the plumber brothers in a film.