Although many of the character types selected for the Nintendo Noir profiles represent archetypes within the film noir genre, each character badge was inspired by a specific noir film.
Black Mage: This badge was inspired by Fritz Lang's M, a creepy early noir in which Peter Lorre plays an insane psychopath. Peter Lorre was the 1940's version of Steve Buscemi.
Donkey Kong: Donkey Kong was loosely based on two film noirs: The Asphalt Jungle, which involved an ex-con getting forced back into a life of crime, and Dead on Arrival or DoA, which had a heavy building construction theme.
Link: Film noir has a lot of hit men, but Link was based somewhat on the hit man Raven from the film This Gun for Hire. Link represents all the physically strong men who are manipulated by strong-willed women in film noir.
Luigi: Luigi's look and character is typical of many crime dramas of the time period. However, Luigi's character personality was drawn from Sam Spade in The Maltese Falcon.
Megaman: Megaman is loosely based on the actor, Steven Seagal, who has never, at least to my knowledge, appeared in a film noir. The Megaman character comes from the Alfred Hitchcock film Shadow of a Doubt. Artistic inspiration came from the movie poster for Army of Darkness, which didn't look like anything from the movie; Megaman got a sparkly movie poster picture that looks nothing like any of his characters in any of his movies.
Michelangelo: Inspiration for Michelangelo came from the dramatic thriller Taxi Driver, about a mentally unstable war vet who violently lashes out against crime to save someone he cares about.
Peach: The Orson Welles classic Citizen Kane provided the inspiration for Peach. Both Peach and Kane were born into money, live lavishly, and created a fantasy land in which to live, and both were afraid of but at the same time desired emotional commitment.
Pit: Pit's character was inspired by the less known Orson Welles classic, in fact it was probably one of his most frightening movies, Touch of Evil. In this film, Welles plays a greasy corrupt cop.
Samus: Samus is based off of a more recent sci-fi film noir, Dark City. She is specifically modeled after Jennifer Connelly's character.
Simon: Simon Belmont was inspired by Holly Martins from The Third Man. Both characters are out of work drunks chasing shadows.
Kirby: Although Casablanca is best known for Humphrey Bogart, another character in the movie who is equally interesting is Signor Ferrari. Kirby's noir version was based directly off of Ferrari.
Zelda: Zelda represents almost all femme fatale characters in film noir. She is beautiful, blond, and manipulative. Specifically, her character inspiration came from Sunset Boulevard.
These last two are new additions to the Noir badge set based on viewer requests and personal random inspiration. They are not part of the Nintendo Noir mystery game.
Note: Originally posted to WordPress on March 14, 2011. Reposted here when I moved to Blogger.