The design of the blue speedster in Sonic the Hedgehog is changing following heavy criticism for his live-action look. One of the most divisive movies of 2019 has somehow become the live-action/CGI hybrid Sonic the Hedgehog movie at Paramount. Fans of the iconic video game character were originally interested to see how he would translate to the big screen, but then the first look at Sonic's form hit and took a turn for the worse.
From the very first teaser poster of his silhouette to leaked images showing off his full design, and into the recently released first trailer, there doesn't appear to have been a single instance when fans (especially online) reacted positively to the design. He had essentially been given a complete makeover for his movie appearance, with long legs, separated eyeballs, and many more changes coming his way. This had put Sonic the Hedgehog on the radar as a potential financial disaster based on this response, but changes are being made to correct this.
After the immense levels of criticism that Sonic's look has received, Sonic the Hedgehog director Jeff Fowler confirmed on Twitter that Sonic's design is being overhauled. The exact details of the changes have not been specified, but fans of the speedster's classic look will likely see something closer to what they've come to expect. See Fowler's full statement below:
Thank you for the support. And the criticism. The message is loud and clear... you aren't happy with the design & you want changes. It's going to happen. Everyone at Paramount & Sega are fully committed to making this character the BEST he can be... #sonicmovie #gottafixfast 🔧✌️— Jeff Fowler (@fowltown) May 2, 2019
Completely changing the look of a lead CGI character this late in the game is a rare occurrence in Hollywood. This will require the team to create a brand new look and then apply it throughout the movie, and with a November release date, there's only six months left to figure out Sonic's final design and finish the VFX work that will need to be done. However, this will also mean that Paramount will need to put a pause on promoting the film for the time being and force them to redo any other marketing materials to reflect the new look. Toy packaging, promo art, and much more may already be in the works with the original design, and now they'll be pressed for time to change it all.
Even if this decision suddenly creates more work for Fowler and the entire team at Paramount, it is hopefully one that will benefit them in the long run. The negative buzz around the film already was setting up Sonic the Hedgehog for failure, so as long as the redesign is even a minor upgrade on what the original plan was, the movie may still be able to get itself in the good graces of hardcore Sonic fans. The film's quality as a whole will still be up for debate, though, but hopefully Sonic the Hedgehog delivers an accurate and improved look for the speedster when we see him next.
Source: Jeff Fowler
- Sonic the Hedgehog (2020) release date: Feb 14, 2020