Sonic the Hedgehog has great expectations.
On April 30, Paramount Pictures released the Sonic the Hedgehog live-action film trailer. As a long-time Sonic fan (I even dressed as him for Halloween 1994), I have watched the franchise explode in popularity during the early-to-mid 90s, but fell from grace during the 2000s. Sonic was a stark contrast to Mario—everyone saw Sonic as hip and cool, while Mario was seen as an element of the old guard. Still, Mario is a classic character that others could get behind.
The live-action Super Mario Bros. movie was critically panned during its 1993 release. Bob Hoskins, who played Mario, famously said in a 2007 interview that Super Mario Bros. was the worst thing he ever did, that it was his biggest disappointment and something he would change about his past.
Can the Sonic movie avoid the same pitfalls?
Now, we have Sonic the Hedgehog taking its turn in the live-action movie seat. The film will debut on November 8, 2019. Ben Schwartz will play the voice of Sonic. Schwartz has previously appeared in Parks and Recreation and had a small role in other comedies such as The Other Guys and played a fictional Eminem’s assistant in The Interview.
One of the more interesting casting choices is Jim Carrey as Dr. Ivo Robotnik (or Dr. Eggman depending on what set of Sonic fans you’re talking to). Carrey has an extensive track record of quality comedy performances in the 90s (Ace Ventura, Dumb and Dumber, Liar Liar, and the horrendously underrated The Cable Guy). James Marsden, who played Cyclops in the original X-Men movie series (2001-2006), and reprised his role in X-Men: Days of Future Past, plays Tom Wachowski. Wachowski is the sheriff of Green Hills who helps Sonic in his quest to stop Dr. Robotnik.
Viewers are skeptical about the film already.
Given Hollywood’s shift to 90s nostalgia, this ought to be a hit, right? Many people panned the trailer, most noticeably focusing on Sonic’s design. In addition, the trailer’s usage of the 1995 Coolio hit “Gangsta’s Paradise” also raised eyebrows. The film seems to be taking on a comedic tone with the inclusion of Carrey and Schwartz. Although there is not much to go on from the trailer, I think it is reminiscent of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog (1993-1996) where Jaleel White (Steve Urkel from Family Matters) played the titular character.
What do you think about the trailer? Do you think the movie will be a hit or a bomb? Let us know in the comments below!