Last night, anyone who tuned into The Game Awards got their first look at Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Aside from the blue speedster himself, the new film will also bring in at least two recognizable characters from original video games: Tails (voiced by Colleen O’Shaughnessey) and Knuckles (voiced by Idris Elba). The latter’s appearance feels especially exciting, given how quickly he overpowers Sonic in the trailer. But director Jeff Fowler insists that Knuckles has a more complex role in the sequel beyond playing the heavy.
Sonic’s video game adventures usually didn’t stray too far from the simple premise of collecting golden rings and fighting the occasional boss. But while speaking with Collider, Fowler explained how important it is for the movies to have actual character development. And in the case of Knuckles, this meant getting to the heart of his rivalry with Sonic.
“I always have kind of joked he’s like the Terminator or the Winter Soldier coming into our movie world where he’s spent his life training to be a warrior,” said Fowler. “The echidnas are all about honor. Everything about him is a total contrast to Sonic. Sonic has no training. Sonic sort of flies by the seat of his pants, he has no discipline, and Knuckles is all disciplined. So it was always about, sort of from a storytelling standpoint, all of the great contrasts we could create between these two characters, and just put them on a collision course in a really great way, and just see that Sonic’s got a lot to learn.”
“I think of it as like Sonic’s been in one fight, really,” continued Fowler. “He beat Robotnik at the end of the first movie. But he’s got a lot of learning to do before he can become sort of the true hero. And that’s what’s great about bringing in Knuckles, is it’s going to test Sonic in all these great ways. And I think fans are just going to love seeing how they go at it, and just what that does for Sonic’s sort of hero arc.”
The sequel’s release is still four months away. Regardless, Fowler also shared that he’s currently mulling over ideas for Sonic 3, including new characters.
“Even if somebody didn’t ask me to be thinking about ideas for future installments, it would be impossible not to,” added Fowler. “Even as we’re working through the visual effects and animation on this film, it’s impossible not to already get excited and to be starting to scheme about all the directions that the story could go, what new characters coming in, the impact that they could have. It’s the best part of the creative process when it’s just kind of a blank canvas and you can really just start to have blue sky ideas, even if, again, it’s not in an official capacity. If the request comes through to start laying the blueprints for another Sonic film, I will be armed and ready with all kinds of ideas.”
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 will hit theaters on April 8, 2022.
Are you excited to see more of Knuckles in the film? What characters would you like to see in a third installment? Let us know in the comments down below!
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