The design for live-action Sonic the Hedgehog has been received, uh, quite poorly to put it nicely, so much so that the filmmakers decided to go back to the drawing board for a total revamp on the blue blur’s weirdly swole look.
While this news of a redesign for Sonic was well-received, it did bring up the question of whether Sonic The Hedgehog will be delayed given the amount of time needed to redo the character.
Well we got our answer and it’s not that surprising at all. Director Jeff Fowler took to Twitter to announce that Sonic will now be delayed until February 14, 2020 in order to given the team enough time to “make Sonic just right.”
While the extra time will likely benefit the film in this case judging by all the positive responses to the delay’s announcement, it does set a worrying precedent going forward in regards to filmmaking and fan pressure.
With the team behind Sonic capitulating to demands that the titular hedgehog be redesigned, it unwillingly handed over an enormous amount of power to the fans. Whether this decision will turn out for better for worse remains to be seen, but the fact is that fans will now be empowered to put pressure on filmmakers and force them to cave into their demands whenever things don’t seem to go their way.
Not only will this remove any creative freedom filmmakers have in expressing their vision, it will make them vulnerable to people acting in bad faith and to studio suits who don’t want their cash cow to stop giving milk. While there are those who have actual constructive criticism to offer, there will be trolls out there whose sole purpose is to ruin everything for everyone and separating which is which is difficult.
James Mangold has expressed his concerns in the past regarding how fans are being more and more emboldened to put pressure on filmmakers and how this will end up scaring creative people away from interesting franchise movies, resulting in a vicious negative feedback loop between creator and consumer.
Here’s hoping that Sonic is a one-off incident and nothing more comes out of it because we’re dipping our toes into worrying waters right now and no one will emerge as the “winner” if it continues.