Sonic the Hedgehog gets its release date delayed by three months due to the last-minute redesign of the title character. Originally scheduled for a November 2019 premiere, fans got their first look at the movie via a teaser trailer released in late April. Unfortunately, the word-of-mouth it generated was decidedly poor, with many people ridiculing the look of CGI Sonic. The backlash was very intense, especially with audiences enjoying the faithful live-action recreations of Pokémon for Detective Pikachu.
As a result, it was surprisingly announced that Sonic would be getting a complete overhaul for the movie. While some, like Sonic's co-creator Yuji Naka, were pleased by this development, the decision to change Sonic's appearance proved to be controversial. Many were quick to point out that this put the digital artists under the gun, since the film would need to be ready for a November debut. But now, they're going to get some extra time to complete their work.
Today, Sonic the Hedgehog director Jeff Fowler took to Twitter to reveal the movie's new release date, which is February 14, 2020. Check out his post in the space below:
As evidenced by Fowler's hashtag, the primary reasoning behind this change is to benefit the hard-working VFX team tasked with re-rendering Sonic. That obviously won't be an easy task, seeing that he is the titular character and will likely have substantial screen time. Sonic the Hedgehog was already drowning in negative press, so if the redesign was a rush job in order to meet a pre-determined release date, things could have become even more disastrous. It goes without saying that reworking Sonic's appearance isn't going to magically fix all of the other issues viewers had with the trailer, but this is at least a step in the right direction. It's good to know the studio is willing to take their time to make sure the final product looks as good as possible, particularly since they now know fans will let their displeasure be heard.
It'll be interesting to see if the release date delay helps Sonic at the box office. Initially, it was going to be in a crowded November filled with other genre pictures (Terminator: Dark Fate, Charlie's Angels, Frozen 2) and awards hopefuls (Ford v. Ferrari, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood). It stood reason to believe that Sonic might have had trouble standing out if it stuck to a fall premiere. Granted, February 2020 sees projects like Birds of Prey and a new Kingsman movie, but both of those should be geared more towards older viewers while Sonic targets families. February is typically less competitive at the box office, so hopefully Sonic is aided in more ways than one here.
Source: Jeff Fowler
- Sonic the Hedgehog (2020) release date: Feb 14, 2020