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‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ Release Delayed Three Months After Fan Backlash Forces Character Redesign

Jeff Fowler is redesigning the character after fans complained about his new look for the live-action/animated movie.

"Sonic the Hedgehog"

“Sonic the Hedgehog”

Paramount

Sonic the Hedgehog” director Jeff Fowler has announced his upcoming Paramount family tentpole is being delayed three months as he takes time in post-production to redesign the title character. Fowler posted on Twitter that “Sonic” will now open in theaters nationwide in February 2020, three months after its original November 8, 2019 release date.

Paramount dropped the official trailer for “Sonic” on April 30 and received backlash for changing the character’s look from the video game. Sonic’s eyes appear more circular in the film and his fur has been rendered with VFX to appear more lifelike. “Sonic” fans were outraged over the character’s appearance, so much so that Fowler announced May 3 he would be redesigning the character for the film.

“Thank you for the support. And the criticism,” Fowler wrote on Twitter in reaction to the trailer backlash. “The message is loud and clear. You aren’t happy with the design and you want changes. It’s going to happen. Everyone at Paramount and Sega are fully committed to making this character the BEST he can be.”

“Sonic” marks the feature directorial debut of Fowler. The director worked as an animation researcher and developer on Spike Jonze’s “Where the Wild Things Are.” The movie stars James Marsden as a newly appointed town sheriff who travels to San Francisco and gets mixed up in Sonic’s mission to defeat the evil Dr. Ivo Robotnik. Sonic is voiced by “Parks and Recreation” favorite Ben Schwartz, while Jim Carrey takes on the villain role.

Paramount will now open “Sonic the Hedgehog” in theaters February 14, 2020.

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