Japanese PM emerges from green pipe as Super Mario during Rio Closing Ceremony

Japanese  Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Rio Olympics Closing Ceremony (Reuters)
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Rio Olympics Closing Ceremony (Reuters)

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made a spectacular entrance during the Rio Closing Ceremony, emerging as gaming icon Super Mario from a green pipe.

Before he emerged a short video played showing Mr Abe in Japan, concerned about not getting to Rio in time. He then transforms into Mario and uses a tunnel through the Earth as a shortcut.

It was a supremely Japanese moment of showmanship, ahead of the nation's own hosting of the Olympics in 2020.

Nintendo's Super Mario is one of the most recognisable characters in gaming history.

Later, the Olympic flag in Maracana Stadium was lowered, before the Mayor of Rio de Janeiro gave the flag to the head of the International Olympic Committee, who handed it over to the Tokyo Governor, Yuriko Koike.

Tokyo is one of the world's richest, most recognisable and most cosmopolitan cities, raising expectations that the 2020 Summer Games will run more smoothly than Rio's.

Newshub.