Redesign and delays to Sonic the Hedgehog movie release pay off big at the box office


The film version of Sonic the Hedgehog was delayed 10 months due to negative reaction to the original design of the title character (left). A more cartoonish version (right) of Sonic was met with approval and the film has set an opening weekend box office record.

The infamous blue hedgehog is now on the big screen and in a theater near you after a delay in the release of the Sonic the Hedgehog movie. After the first trailers for the film were met with wide-spread negative reaction last year, the film was literally taken back to the drawing board after numerous complaints regarding Sonic’s design. 

The Sonic fan base complained that their favorite hedgehog looked more like a cat than a supersonic hedgehog. Now, with a more cartoonish Sonic than originally put forward, the Sonic fan base is very excited that their video game hero is finally a part of the big video game movie franchises alongside Angry Birds and Detective Pikachu

Sonic, the blue hedgehog that can run at supersonic speeds, was first introduced on June 23, 1991 in the video game Sonic the Hedgehog. The 2D platformer was released on the Mega Drive and Genesis. The Sonic 2D series continued with the addition of over 30 more games to the series with more still in development. Each game features Sonic, but other characters vary through the games such as his arch enemy Doctor Ivo “Eggman” Robotnik, Miles “Tails” Prower, Knuckles, Amy Rose, Shadow the Hedgehog, and Chao creatures. Sonic also came out with 3D platformer games with the same concept as the 2D. 

In 2013, Sony received the rights to the Sonic franchise and started working on a script in 2014. The first trailer for the Sonic the Hedgehog movie came out in April 2019, and was set to release on November 8, 2019, but then came the overwhelmingly negative reaction to Sonic’s look.

In May 2019, director Jeff Fowler announced that they were going to reschedule the release of the film to “take a little more time to make Sonic just right.” A few months passed before any news was released about the film, and it was almost completely forgotten by the community and needed to resurface soon. 

In early December, the trailer for the new and improved Sonic the Hedgehog film was released with a much more positive response. The main change about the character was his more cartoonish look instead of a more realistic look that the first release offered. 

Surprised by the outcome, the Sonic community was ecstatic that the filmmakers listened to their requests and the new trailers quickly blew up. Sonic the Hedgehog opened on Friday, Feb 14, and the Sonic faithful rewarded the filmmakers with a $57 million opening weekend box office take, an opening weekend record for a movie based on a video game. 

The film features Ben Schwartz (Parks and Recreation) as the voice of Sonic. Jim Carrey (Dumb and Dumber, Ace Ventura: Pet detective) voices Sonic’s arch enemy Dr. Ivo “Eggman” Robotnik, a scientist and inventor plotting for world domination. James Marsden, (Hairspray, X-Men) voices Sheriff Tom Wachowski, who befriends Sonic. 

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