‘Sonic the Hedgehog‘ director Jeff Fowler has revealed that his upcoming live-action movie is being delayed for three months. The director took it to Twitter to announce the new release date which falls on a Valentine’s Day. The movie will now hit the screens on February 14, 2020, instead of previously set November 8, 2019. Though Fowler didn’t divulge the actual reason, he implied it involves the controversy surrounding the character design.
“Taking a little more time to make Sonic just right,” reads Fowler’s tweet on Friday.
THR says the move is the result of an outcry of the blue hedgehog fans after the first trailer of the movie surfaced online. The redesigned appearance of the cult video game character met with stringent criticism from the die-hard fans of the game. The backlash was so fierce that Fowler himself turned up with a promise that they would rethink about the character design.
“Thank you for the support. And the criticism,” reads Fowler’s tweet on May 2. “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,” he promised.
Paramount unveiled the first trailer for ‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ on April 30. Sonic’s eyes appear more circular in the trailer while his fur has been fixed with VFX to make it more lifelike. Both the changes didn’t strike a chord with the Sonic fans who unleashed their wrath on the social media platforms.
‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ is the feature directorial debut of Fowler who has worked as an animation researcher and developer along with Spike Jonze in the movie ‘Where the Wild Things Are.’ The ‘Sonic’ movie features James Marsden as the new town sheriff of Green Hills, Montana. He crosses paths with the anthropomorphic extraterrestrial blue hedgehog Sonic on his way to San Francisco. The hedgehog, who can sprint at a lightning speed, is on the run with the government agents on his tail. Moreover, he has to collect his rings before its too late to defeat the crazy criminal mastermind scientist Doctor Robotnik, played by Jim Carrey. Sonic is voiced by Ben Schwartz, who is known for ‘Parks and Recreation.’
‘Sonic’ now will have to face a tough competition from Fox’s upcoming ‘Kingsman‘ prequel and Warner Bros.’ and DC’s ‘Birds of Prey,’ both of which are lined up for early 2020 release. Fowler’s announcement of rethinking the character design sparked another wave of heated discussions on the social media platforms about how the visual effects team would make it before release. Fowler responded with the hashtag #novfxartistswereharmedinthemakingofthismovie!
Check out Fowler’s tweet below.
— Jeff Fowler (@fowltown) May 24, 2019
Cover Image Courtesy: Paramount Pictures