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'Sonic the Hedgehog' movie in the works

On June 11 Fox News reported that a "Sonic the Hedgehog" feature film based on the popular video game character is in the works. Films based on comic book characters have been successful at the box office for the past several years, and video game inspired films have seen a surge in popularity as well. The hedgehog has an international fan base and continues to bring in over one billion dollars in revenue through video games and merchandise.

Sonic the Hedgehog
Photo by Andrew Toth

The title character is a 15-year-old blue hedgehog, who has super speed and curls into a ball to attack enemies. He was first introduced by Sega in 1991 and was envisioned as the main competition to Mario at Nintendo. In the video games, Sonic travels through each level to collect gold friends and overcome obstacles. Sometimes he is accompanied by his best friend Miles "Tails" Prower, an 8-year-old fox with a trademark tail.

The film is being created by Sony Pictures Entertainment and Marza Animation Planet, a Japanese based animation company, to make a computer generated imagery and live action feature film about the speedy character. No official film details have been announced, such as the plot, but with a character like Sonic the possibilities are endless and the franchise already has a strong fan base to score at the box office. The franchise includes over one hundred and forty different video games, comic books and toys to total millions in profit each year globally.

Time revealed on June 11 that Van Robichaux and Evan Susser have been chosen to write the script for the film together, while Neil Neal Moritz, who penned "22 Jump Street," will produce for Original Film. A previous film, which was actually a two part series, was released direct to DVD back in 1999. The character has also had an animated television series which began running for several seasons in 1993 and spawned a comic book spinoff to further Sonic's adventures.

The series was reboot earlier this year by Cartoon Network and has had several other variations that deviate from the video game story lines. The characters also briefly appeared in the 2012 video game adaptation feature film "Wreck-It Ralph," and was an anime series in Japan. Several countries have their own versions of the character and different media such as comics.

According to Sony, the film will focus on Sonic and his relationships with the villains in the video games, such as Dr. Eggman. Due to the amount of animation and special effects, it's likely that the film will take several years to complete. Even if the characters are made in live action, the actors would have to complete extensive motion capture and given the recent advancements in cinematic software, the post production process would take twice as long as filming.

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