It's fair to say that things quickly spiraled out of control once the first Sonic the Hedgehog movie trailer arrived back in April. Sonic's movie design was panned by fans and critics alike, prompting Paramount Pictures and director Jeff Fowler to quickly scramble to delay and redesign the iconic character. The decision proved to be a good one as fan reaction improved considerably, but the overhaul wasn't without its own set of drawbacks.
On the good side, UK-based production company Social Films reported that the newest Sonic the Hedgehog trailer pulled in 360% more likes in the first 24 hours while dislikes dropped significantly by 98%. In fact, in the trailer's first 24 hours alone, it managed to generate 672,652 likes and only 4,924 dislikes, a huge change from the April trailer. Fan response has been extremely positive to the new design, which should bode well for the film's launch.
Will all this goodwill be worth it in the long run? With the movie still a ways off, it's hard to say, but the redesign did set Paramount Pictures behind the 8-ball in terms of profits. The complete Sonic redesign cost the studio an estimated $2.15 million dollars. When combined with the delay as well as the redesign, the film has now gone an extra $35 million over its original budget which was originally set at $90 million.
While the trailer now clearly has fan support, not everyone has back on board with Sonic's new look. In fact, Yuji Naka who originally created the character for Sega remains less than enthused. After calling the original design unnatural and creepy, Naka seems disappointed that the movie version was ultimately changed, lamenting that they won't be using the old Sonic look. While he agrees the new design appears more Sonic-like, the last sticking point for him is that the eyes don't actually connect like the video game version.
Sonic the Hedgehog opens in theaters on February 14, 2020.