Nintendo’s Donkey Kong statue was not actually stolen from its New York store
Fear not: a large Donkey Kong statue at Nintendo’s New York City store has not gone missing after the building was broken into on Monday evening.
A now-viral tweet claimed looters removed a life-sized model of the fictional gorilla during demonstrations in Manhattan earlier this week. The tweet featured real images of the Nintendo retail location with police standing outside and broken storefront windows. But it also contained an image, suspected to be Photoshopped, of the Donkey Kong statue missing.
Now, Nintendo has set the record straight. “There was no theft of a Donkey Kong statue from Nintendo NY store,” a Nintendo of America spokesperson confirmed to The Verge.
While Nintendo fans can be relieved that Donkey Kong was not kidnapped, it’s unlikely the statue was even inside the store at the time of the break in. On November 21st, 2019, during the 25th anniversary of Donkey Kong Country, Nintendo unveiled a new statue of Mario antagonist Bowser, which now occupies the same space the DK statue did. Nintendo would not comment on the location of the DK statue or whether it was indeed inside the store.
Nintendo New York originally opened in November 2001 as The Pokémon Center. In July 2005, the store underwent a rebranding as the Nintendo World Store, before it was renamed again in February 2016 as Nintendo New York. The two-story store features a slew of merchandise based on popular Nintendo characters — including apparel, toys, and even rare Nintendo hardware. As of March 16th, the store was closed indefinitely due to the coronavirus pandemic.