Earlier this week, a trailer for the very first Sonic the Hedgehog live-action movie was released, and social media exploded with …a lot of questions. Why does he look like that? Why “Gangsta’s Paradise?” Why does he look like that? Are those human teeth? And why does he look like that?
Not only was there an avalanche of mockery on display in reaction to this new version of SEGA‘s iconic ring-collector and his strange appearance, some eager artists started having a go at redesigning Sonic so that he looked, well, how you’d expect him to look.
This one by Sucker Punch‘s Edward Pun, for example, stands out…
In a surprising turn of events, the film’s director, Jeff Fowler, subsequently took to Twitter to reassure people that he had taken the backlash to the trailer on board, and that changes would be made…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 %uD83D%uDD27%u270C%uFE0F — Jeff Fowler (@fowltown) May 2, 2019
“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.”
It’s unclear how the VFX team behind Sonic The Hedgehog plans to fix the situation before the film’s November 8 release date; it’s likely taken a huge amount of work to even develop the character to the level he’s at now, but we’ll have to wait and see whether they can manage to rework the design in time.
What is clear is that Paramount has listened to fans and had a good, long sanity check over the whole thing, which at least shows a degree of maturity and thoughtfulness (and, naturally, a desire not to lose massive amounts of money).
A lot of us have worked on passion proejcts now and then where we’ve had our heads down and are so immersed in getting to the finish line that we haven’t noticed problems with our work. Sometimes it’s helpful to show others what you’ve created so that you can absorb other perspectives. Honestly, can you imagine being one of the people who worked on Sonic The Hedgehog, watching the reaction to that trailer roll out? It must have been genuinely horrifying.
If Fowler and his crew can rethink things at this stage, there’s no reason that Sonic The Hedgehog can’t be a fun time at the pictures, even if the film does seem to have shades of Hop…
More about Sonic The Hedgehog as it develops.