Nuckles87 has been an editor at Sonic Stadium since 2007, and has been covering events like E3, PAX, and SDCC since 2010. An avid retro gamer, he runs a monthly stream on Twitch where he explores obscure Sonic oddities, and how aspects of the franchise have evolved over the decades.
Just days after Sonic 2 surpassed the $400 million milestone, it has now passed another: it has now surpassed Uncharted’s $400,636,000 global box office, with a $400,924,000 gross as of this weekend. This means Sonic 2 is now the fourth highest grossing video game movie of all time globally, putting it behind only Rampage ($428 million), Detective Pikachu ($433 million), and Warcraft ($439 million). Of course, its important to note that these movies achieved these numbers with releases in major box office markets like Japan and China, places Sonic 2 has yet to release in.
Sonic 2 reaches this milestone even as it has continued to disappear from US theaters. Surprisingly, however, it isn’t entirely gone yet. Sonic 2 is still in 234 theaters as of this weekend. A mere five percent of where it started, but still enough to bring in more than $100,000 this week. Between this and Sonic 2’s continued global presence, its total box office will probably continue to inch higher in the coming weeks.
Nevertheless…this is the end of these articles, at least for now. Sonic 2 is still expected to hit Hong Kong later this year, and is also expected to release in Japan on August 19. Japan can be a major box office market, but it’s an open question whether or not a Sonic movie will do well there. The first movie released in the midst of Japan’s COVID lockdowns and grossed only $1.5 million, so this will be the series’ first real shot at the country’s box office. We’ll see soon enough!
Over a year after its announcement, Sonic Origins is finally available to play as of June 23, 12AM EST. It can be purchased on Xbox, Playstation, and Switch platforms for $40, or $45 for the deluxe version that comes with $8 of DLC (including music from other Sonic games and additional animations in the menu).
We’ve been covering this game for the last few days. You can check out our review here, and find a bunch of footage from the game here.
It happened a little later than I’d hoped, but it finally happened: Sonic the Hedgehog 2 has surpassed $400 million, putting it amongst a rare breed of video game movies to surpass that milestone. Only four other movies hav reached that number: Uncharted ($401 mill), Rampage ($422 mill), Detective Pikachu ($433.4 mill), and Warcraft ($439 mill). It will almost certainly surpass Uncharted, potentially as early as this weekend, but as it stands it is now the fifth most profitable video game movie of all time, and the only one of the 5 to achieve that number without being released in Japan or China.
It’s US numbers now sit at $190,564 million, with it typically making well under $100k daily. Internationally, it’s now at $209,450 million, bring its total box office to $400,015,448.
It’s been interesting charting Sonic 2’s box office success, and seeing it persist in theaters for this long. I have to say, I wasn’t actually sure it could hit this number. Paramount has got to be happy with this. It’s easy to see why they bet big on this franchise before this movie even came out.
This news caught me a little off guard, as international numbers are usually only posted on Sunday, but I guess Paramount wanted to get these numbers out early, given the milestone. This might be the last box office article, at least until Sonic 2 releases in Japan on August 19. If it manages to surpass Uncharted before then, I’m sure that’ll warrant one more. Hope ya’ll enjoyed my game references, I’ve got just three left after this.
A list of Sonic Origins’ trophies has finally been released, and its a pretty sizable list. We’ve got bronze, silver, and gold trophies, as well as a single platinum trophy for completing everything. You can check out the list below:
Complete Clear (Platinum) – Get All the Trophies!
Welcome to Sonic the Hedgehog (Bronze) – Watch the Opening for Sonic the Hedgehog
Welcome to Sonic CD (Bronze) – Watch the Opening for Sonic CD
Welcome to Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Bronze) – Watch the Opening for Sonic the Hedgehog 2
Welcome to Sonic 3 & Knuckles (Bronze) – Watch the Opening for Sonic 3 & Knuckles
Beware Moto Bugs! (Bronze) – Defeat 10 Motobugs in Sonic the Hedgehog
Bubbly Breath (Bronze) – Use air bubbles in Sonic the Hedgehog
Time Traveller (Bronze) – Travel to the past or future in Sonic CD
Shut Down Metal Sonic (Bronze) – Win a race against Metal Sonic in Sonic CD
Beware Stingers! (Bronze) – Defeat 10 Stingers in Sonic the Hedgehog 2
Lucky Hedgehog (Bronze) – Get the Jackpot in Sonic the Hedgehog 2
Beware Rhinobots! (Bronze) – Defeat 10 Rhinobots in Sonic 3 and Knuckles
Easy Peasy with Shields! (Bronze) – Collect all three types of shields in Sonic 3 and Knuckles
Ring Collector (Bronze) – Collect a total of 1000 Rings
Gallant Spin Dash (Bronze) – Defeat 30 Enemies with the Spin Dash
Newbie Hero (Bronze) – Defeat a total of 50 Enemies
Museum Time (Bronze) – View a Premium Collection item from the Museum
Very First Mission Clear (Bronze) – Clear 1 Mission
Knuckles the Echidna (Bronze) – Glide as Knuckles
Miles ‘Tails’ Prower (Bronze) – Fly as Tails
Boss Rush Attempt (Bronze) – Try the boss rush from any of the titles
Sonic the Hedgehog Mission Master (Silver) – Clear 10 Sonic the Hedgehog Missions with a S Rank
Sonic CD Mission Master (Silver) – Clear 10 Sonic CD missions with a S Rank
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Mission Master (Silver) – Clear 10 Sonic the Hedgehog 2 missions with a S Rank
S3 & K Mission Master (Silver) – Clear 10 Sonic 3 and Knuckles missions with a S Rank
To the Mirror World (Silver) – Play Mirror Mode
Movie Maniac (Silver) – Unlock 6 movie collection items with coins
In an interview with IGN, Sonic Frontiers Director Morio Kishimoto talked about the game’s length and difficulty curve.
In terms of length, Kishimoto confirmed that the game would be around 20-30 hours, with full competition taking roughly double the time. Kishimoto stated that the game’s length was part of the reason they decided to make Sonic upgradeable throughout the adventure, in order to keep players invested.
Kishimoto also talked about the differences in the difficulty curve between Frontiers and past Sonic games. Specifically, Kishimoto mentioned how Sonic games typically become more difficult as they progress, and how such a curve was no longer necessary with Frontiers:
“In previous Sonic titles, we had to gradually make the stages more difficult in order to reach an amount of play time that would satisfy players. It is natural for level-based platformers to become more difficult as you progress. However, for Sonic games the problem has always been that higher difficulty can get in the way of the game’s sense of speed. In Sonic Frontiers, the Open Zone offers a lot of content already, so raising the difficulty in order to increase the play time was no longer necessary. From start to finish, we were able to maintain a sense of speed with ideal level design for a Sonic game.”
For the full interview, check out the source below.
In an interview with Axios, Takashi Iizuka confirmed that the team has been working on Sonic Frontiers remotely since the COVID-19 pandemic forced Japan into lockdown in 2020.
Iizuka had positive things to say about the team working remotely, noting that developers benefited from a safe working environment and that the ease of digital communication actually accelerated much of their work. Sonic Team has continued to work remotely ever since.
Iizuka has noted one negative impact of remote work, however: it’s difficult for everyone on the team to see the big picture. “If you’re just on the team, you’re kind of doing your own work,” said Iizuka, “And you don’t get to look over your shoulder at the other group doing the other work, so not everyone on the team shares the whole vision of what the game is.”
Iizuka also confirmed that development of Frontiers began as early as late 2017, as the team sought fresh ideas after hitting a wall with the old Sonic format.
Check out Iizuka’s full interview with Axios in the source below.
The details for Sonic Frontiers have continued to pour in thanks to numerous interviews with Sonic Team, and they are shedding further light on the developer’s vision for the game.
In an interview with Axios, Takashi Iizuka described the structure of the game’s world, and why they were calling it “open zone.” Iizuka thinks the current reaction from fans stems from the simplicity of what’s been seen thus far. “This is just the first island. Maybe it’s going to feel easy. But later on, you will need [more] technical skills to get to certain places.”
Meanwhile, in an interview with IGN, game director Morio Kishimoto further elaborated on what Sonic Team is going for with this open zone design. Kishimoto described Sonic Frontiers’ open zones as a world map that is entirely playable. He elaborated:
“A playable world map that includes stage-like elements is something that hasn’t really been done before, so we had to come up with a new name. What is often defined as a World in other level-based platformers is called a Zone in Sonic games, so we took that and combined it with Open, which refers to a freely explorable field. So that’s what Open Zone stands for.”
“Super Mario Bros. 3 was released in Japan in 1988. I believe this was the first game to introduce a world map. The system has been used by countless platformers since, even to this day. A true evolution of this structure is what we see as the essence of Sonic Frontiers’ field. We wanted to provide a next-gen level-based platforming experience. But how do we evolve a level-based platformer like Sonic into this new Open Zone? That’s what Sonic Frontiers is all about.”
In essence, what is meant to separate open zones from hub worlds and world maps is that these locations are not just a way to access levels, but are filled with level elements themselves. “The Open Zone stands central in Sonic Frontiers’ gameplay, and the game’s levels exist as elements within this area. From grind rails to platform objects, loops and so on, the Open Zone is packed with the athletic action we love in Sonic games,” said Kishimoto.
One important thing that Kishimoto noted, which is likely key to Sonic Team’s approach to the game, is that this is not meant to compete with other open world games. This is still being made as a platformer, first and foremost, meant to rival the likes of Mario and Kirby.
When discussing puzzles, Kishimoto noted that most of them would be optional, as the central focus of the game was Sonic’s sense of speed. This would seem to indicate that much if what we’ve seen earned from puzzles may not be needed to complete the game. The puzzles themselves are going to be diverse, ranging from brain teasers, to tests of “action techniques,” to mini games.
Sonic Frontiers is currently scheduled to release Holiday 2022. Check out the full interviews in the source links below!
It’s been nearly two and a half months since Sonic the Hedgehog 2 debuted in theaters, and it’s been weeks since it hit streaming services. Now, as of this weekend, we appear to finally be reaching the end of Sonic 2’s box office run, at least until it hits Japan in August. Despite this, it’s continued to make millions globally. Sonic 2 made nearly $5 million at the global box office over the last week, giving it a total box office gross of $397.6 million. This puts Sonic 2 within spitting distance of the big $400 million milestone, but also comes as the movie itself continues to fade from theaters.
Sonic 2 made just $1.568 million in the US this past week, and is now showing in just 1,067 theaters. This may very be its final box office weekend in the US. In the rest of the world, where Sonic 2 seems to have slightly better legs, it made $3.3 million.
Not much to say that wouldn’t just be repeating last week’s article, but I do suspect this will be Sonic 2’s penultimate box office article until its Japan release later this summer. Here’s hoping we’ll get to end things by reporting that it’s surpassed $400 million! That certainly remains quite plausible.
We finally got a bunch of new Sonic Frontiers details today, but…not from the place we were expecting. While today’s Sonic Central gave us a brief look at a single boss, IGN’s hands-on of Sonic Frontiers has finally given us an idea of what the game will actually be.
First of all, the impressions themselves: the previewer, Mitchell Saltzman, said he played the game for about four hours. He was mostly pretty positive about his experience, saying “This early build answered the one question I had on my mind: will Sonic’s one-of-a-kind game play translate to an open world? The answer is a resounding absolutely.” He did encounter a lot of pop-in, however, and also noted that there were still bugs that needed to be quashed, though he also pointed out that this was all from an early build of the game. The large bosses were the roughest part of his experience: he was thrown off the boss’s arms far too often, and sometimes didn’t have enough momentum to actually attack the boss’s head despite reaching the top.
In addition to his hands-on impressions, we also got a lot of details on the game itself. The game’s story starts with Sonic, Tails and Amy being sucked through a wormhole. Sonic then finds himself alone on a mysterious island. Sonic’s only companion appears to be an AI voice, which tells Sonic to gather the chaos emeralds. According to Saltzman, Sonic Team is intentionally going for a “mysterious mood.”
Smaller, linear, more traditional bite-sized levels were also confirmed. These levels are accessed by obtaining “portal gears,” which are dropped by the game’s giant bosses. The levels have optional goals, including collecting red rings and beating them within a certain time limit. Completing these goals will earn players “vault keys,” which are needed to unlock the chaos emeralds. Yes, this does appear to be details on Frontiers’ game play loop! Saltzman elaborated on this via Twitter, stating “The flow of the game is basically: Explore open world > solve puzzles to open up map > find collectibles to improve stats > fight world bosses to earn portal gears > use portal gears to unlock linear Sonic levels > complete linear Sonic levels to unlock chaos emeralds.”
Finally, Saltzman also went into detail on the game’s combat. We got a name for that move where Sonic runs around enemies (the cyloop), and we now know that Sonic can also perform dodges and parries. Many of the enemies can be defeated in a variety of ways. In the example he gave, he stated one enemy could either be attacked when it left itself open to attack, or Sonic could create an opening by either using the parry or his cyloop move. He also confirmed that the game will have a exp and a skill tree. When talking about the skill tree specifically, he said the game had a nice sense of power progression, even during the four hours he had with it.
Today’s Sonic Central gave us a look at another one of the game’s massive bosses, which is giving off serious Starlight Carnival vibes. This new boss appears to move through the environment, leaving a path made out of energy in its wake. Eventually the path becomes an arena.
You can check out the 30 seconds of footage below:
SEGA’s long running series of animated Sonic shorts is set to continue with a new Sonic Frontiers animated special, Sonic Frontiers Prologue. Set before the events of the game, the special will focus on Knuckles. The sneak peak, shown during today’s Sonic Central broadcast, show’s Knuckles standing stoically in front of the Master Emerald during a rain storm. Check out a screenshot of it below:
Nothing else is currently known, but Ian Flynn did hint that something he is involved in would be shown, so it seems quite likely he wrote the script for this. We’ll update this article when the status of his involvement is known.
It’s been over two months since Paramount’s Sonic the Hedgehog 2 first debuted in theaters, and its shown no signs of leaving theaters, despite the movie’s debut on Paramount+ and digital services a few weeks ago. The movie has now made $392,769,000 globally, including $188,269,000 in the US, and $204.5 million in the rest of the world.
That said, Sonic 2 has certainly slowed down, making about $7.3 million globally this week. This includes $2.6 million in the US, where it has continued to sit at 7th place at the box office, and $4.7 million in the rest of the world. Sonic 2 is also being show on a little more than 2000 screens in the US, less than half the number of screens it initially debuted on. Thats still a decent number of screens, and seems to indicate theaters aren’t eager to kick out the blue blur even though the movie is now available at home, and there are multiple summer blockbusters to show. This all seems to put Sonic 2 on track to reach $400 million before ultimately leaving theaters.
On a less important note, Morbius returned to theaters in the US. It made just $300,000 this weekend. Meaning that yes, Sonic got to beat Sony’s vampire again.
We’re less than a month out from Sonic Origins’ release, so the final details are now being added to some of the game’s storefronts. Specifically, we now have file size listed on both the Nintendo eShop and Xbox storefronts. Unfortunately, different sizes are listed in different places, which has made reporting on this messier than it really ought to be.
Over at Xbox, both versions of the game are listed at 6 gigs on the Xbox website. If that seems a bit big, that’s because it is: Sonic Mania’s size was less than 400MB, so this is a massive increase in size over that. If you check out the game’s listing on an actual Xbox One X, however, the game’s size is listed as a mere 324.89 MB.
Meanwhile, over at Nintendo’s website, we also have different sizes…between the different versions of the game. The standard version is listed at 3.6 gigs, while the Digital Deluxe version apparently has a size of 7.8 gigs. Finally, we have the game’s Switch eShop listings, which have the standard version at 3.5 gigs and the Digital Deluxe version at 3.8 gigs.
Given the version differences, that difference in download sizes seems a bit…extreme.
Obviously, they can’t all be right. In all likelihood, this will be corrected by the time the game comes out next month.
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 may be out on Paramount+ and other streaming services, but that hasn’t stopped people from going to see it in theaters! Sonic 2 has made another $10 million globally, including an estimated $3.1 million in the US over Memorial Day weekend, getting it 7th place. Sonic 2 fell behind Everything Everywhere All At Once and Bad Guys, and as also bumped down by newcomers Bob’s Burgers and Top Gun: Maverick.
In total, Sonic 2 now sits at $385 Million globally, including $185.7 million in the US, and $199.8 million in the rest of the world. With Sonic 2 continuing to perform solidly, $400 million is increasingly looking like an attainable goal for its final box office.
It’s been a little while since our last, proper box office update! Sonic rushed passed $350 million earlier in the month, but I didn’t run it because I wanted to wait until we got the international numbers…which skipped a week unfortunately.
But we’ve got the international numbers, and the latest US weekend numbers, and despite it being out for nearly two months now, it’s still going surprisingly strong! Globally, Sonic 2 has now passed $375 million, putting it more than $55 million ahead of its predecessor. That number includes $181 million in the US, and $194 million internationally. In the US, Sonic 2 has remained in the top 5 for the past three weekends, with the movie remaining in third place during May 6 and May 15 weekends, and falling to fourth place this weekend. Sonic 2 has demonstrated some remarkable staying power, sticking around even as most of its other competitors have fizzled in the wake of Doctor Strange 2’s release, earning another $20 million in the US in the process.
This is, notably, the last weekend before Sonic 2 hits Paramount+ and Epix broadcast channals, so this may be the last major box office jump we’ll be getting until its Japanese release this summer. At $375 million, Sonic 2 is now just $25 million away from $400 million. Can it reach it? Maybe. Not everyone has Paramount Plus, and if Sonic 2 can continue to make a few million in the US and a few million over seas every week for another month, that will add up. The big wild card, of course, is Japan.
While Japan can be a major market for movies (Jujutsu Kaisen 0 made $100 million, and Fantastic Beasts 3 made $30 million), Sonic has never been an especially popular character there. Couple that with the original’s $1.5 million total gross there (albeit, released in the middle of a lockdown) and its hard to expect much from the movie there. I would certainly expect Sonic 2 to easily beat out its predecessor in the country, but it wouldn’t expect anything on the level of $25 million.
Since this may be my last box office post for awhile, I guess I’ll end this with my own personal expectations for Sonic 2’s future. I think its going to gross another $10 million globally outside of Japan over the coming weeks. I think its total Japanese gross will be $5 million. That would put Sonic 2’s total global box office at $390 million. While that’ll still be well short of the highest grossing video game movie (Warcraft’s $439 million), that’s still a really good haul. Its no wonder Paramount seems to be betting so big on Sonic.
It’s a weird time to be a person who engages in…any sort of media. From reboots, to unprecedented crossovers, to entire works of media built around meta commentary, the modern media landscape is unlike anything humankind has experienced before.
That of course, means that Movie Sonic’s original design popping up in a Disney movie reboot of Chip & Dale: Rescue Rangers that’s also got meta comedy and also acts as a spiritual successor to Roger Rabbit is a thing that just happened that’s surprising, but not that surprising. “Ugly Sonic,” as he is apparently called, has been confirmed by multiple reviews of Rescue Rangers. The character, which will be voiced by Tim Robinson, will be more than a background cameo, and has at least some dialogue in the movie. According to one reviewer, Ugly Sonic works the convention circuit, and says to Dale “The internet saw my human teeth and burned the place down.” Well…he isn’t wrong!
The movie will hit Disney+ later this week on May 20.
And yes, this means Sonic has four separate voice actors right now.
Today’s the day, IDW Sonic fans! Modern Sonic is back for Free Comic Book Day 2022 with a brand new story meant to serve as part of the lead up to issue 50. The story features Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles in a new adventure!
Both US and international fans can find participating comic book stores here. The comic features writing by Ian Flynn and art by Adam Bryce Thomas.
For those of you who can’t make it, don’t worry: a digital copy should be officially available in a few weeks on Amazon via Comixology! This was the case last year, anyway.
We’ve got the cover and synopsis below, but first, a brief PSA: although the comics are free, stores do need to pay for them. So if you can, try to buy something while your there! Maybe a comic, graphic novel, or manga. Lumberjanes, Atomic Robo and Mamo are personal favorites of mine! Invincible is also great if you don’t mind a lot of gore.
Anyway, on to the cover and synopsis:
Sonic’s racing into a brand-new adventure with his best buds (and co-stars of the hit new movie) Tails and Knuckles by his side! But Sonic’s not the only super-speedster in town . . . Get caught up with everything you need to know about Sonic’s evil counterpart Surge before she and Sonic go head-to-head in the epic issue #50, a story years in the making! Exclusive Original Material Rating: All Ages
Sonic 2 has officially surpassed its predecessor at the global box office, logging an estimated $323 Million by the end of Sunday. Of that amount, $160 million is from the US box office, meaning that Sonic 2 has also beaten Sonic 1’s record-setting $149 million and become the highest grossing video game movie ever in the US.
In the context of the overall 2021 box office, Sonic 2 now sits at number 5 globally, after falling behind Fantastic Beasts 3, which now sits at $329 million. This largely comes down to a lack of release for Sonic 2 in China, where FB3 has made $17.5 million, as well an overall stronger performance internationally. In the US box office, Sonic 2 now sits in second place, after surpassing Uncharted, leaving it second only to The Batman, which sits at $369 million.
So what’s next for Sonic 2 at the box office? That’s going to depend on a few factors, including: how well it can weather the release of Dr. Strange 2, how well its Japanese release does this summer, and whether or not it can secure a release in China. Dr. Strange 2 ought to be huge, as the year’s first MCU movie and the first summer blockbuster, so its quite likely it will at least lead to a reduction in the number of screens showing Sonic 2. Sonic has never been all that big in Japan, the first movie only made $1.5 million there (albeit in the immediate aftermath of the global COVID-19 lockdowns), and Sonic 2 is getting a very late release there. Finally, China has been far less open to western movies compared to two years ago.
On the whole, $350 million is looking like a plausible final tally for Sonic 2, a really good number but one that falls well short of the current global video game box office record holder, Warcraft and its $439 million. Though without China, which made up more then half that number, that was always going to be a difficult number for Sonic 2 to beat.
If you wanted any of those older digital releases of Sonic 1, 2, 3 & Knckles, and CD, you might want to get them soon, because most of them are getting delisted on May 20. This news comes via a press release from SEGA, which confirmed the delisting of these games across all platforms outside of the Nintendo Switch and mobile.
Specifically, every individually released version of Sonic 1, 2, 3, Sonic & Knuckles, and Sonic CD are all getting delisted from Steam, Xbox, Playstation 3 and Playstation Now. The SEGA AGES releases of Sonic 1 and 2 on Switch will remain, as will Sonic 1, 2 and CD on iOS and Android. The 3DS releases have yet to be specified, but with that digital service ending next year they likely aren’t bothering with it.
Sonic Channel released a somewhat more detailed list of what was being delisted, though while they say Sonic CD will be among the games getting delisted, it’s not on the list. This is likely just an oversight. You can find that here.
One fan project I’ve been quietly following for awhile has been Team Sea3on’s fan-made third season of Sonic SatAM. I’ve long felt confident they’d eventually deliver something, as the Sonic SatAM community, while small, has been consistently delivering solid fan efforts for years, including the long running web comic this show is based on. Regardless, it’s pretty awesome finally getting to see what they’ve been working on, and as I’d hoped, it’s way past cool.
What’s even cooler is who they got to sing Sonic SatAM’s iconic theme song, The Fastest Thing Alive: Crush 40’s Johnny Gioeli! You can check out the trailer, as well as a clean version of Gioeli’s song, below:
For direct MP3/FLAC download of The Fastest Thing Alive, or for more information on the project and how to support it, or for the Season 3 web comic this is based on, head to their website here.
Another week is in the books for Sonic 2, and it looks like it’ll be adding another $53 million to its box office total. This includes an estimated $15.2 million at this weekend’s US box office, though the current Sunday numbers are an estimate and could shift. Despite earlier estimates showing Sonic 2 retaking the top spot in the US, that has instead gone to Dreamwork’s The Bad Guys, which made $24 million. Sonic 2 took the second spot, putting it ahead of Fantastic Beasts 3, which made $14 million.
This puts Sonic the Hedgehog 2 at $288 million globally, making it the fourth highest grossing movie of 2022 so far, putting it just ahead of Fantastic Beasts 3 ($280 million) and well behind Sony’s Uncharted ($392 million). Both of these movies benefit from significantly higher grosses in international markets, including a release in China (something Sonic 2 doesn’t appear to be getting).
In the US alone, Sonic 2 is now effectively tied with Uncharted, and will almost certainly pass it on Monday. Sonic 2 has made $146 million in the US, putting it just $3 million behind the original’s total US box office.
In fact, it now seems quite likely that Sonic 2 will at least match the $319 million box office of the original, if not surpass it. As I’ve said before, a lot of this will depend on how well its able to retain theater goers from week to week. It has been losing between 40-60% of audience from week to week, which is about on par with the first movie. Sonic 2 had a bigger opening though, and its unlikely to suddenly have its time at the theaters cut-off by another global lockdown like Sonic 1 did.
Sonic 2’s greatest obstacle may simply be theaters dropping it in favor of upcoming summer blockbusters, like Doctor Strange 2, which opens May 6. It is already down 449 theaters from its peak in the US. That number will get lower in the coming weeks.
Be sure to check back here for the final Sunday box office numbers. We’ll update the headline numbers accordingly!
A few weeks ago I said Sonic 2’s long term success would hing on whether or not it has legs. Well, it looks like it has legs…at least in the US, where the box office weekday dailies for Monday through Wednesday show Sonic 2 either beating or rivaling WB’s Fantastic Beasts 3. As we reported a few days ago, Sonic 2 beat FB3 on Easter Monday. It has since gone on to barely lose on Tuesday, making $3 million to FB3’s $3.2 million. Yesterday, it squeaked by FB3, making $2.2 million to FB3’s $2.1 million.
Box Office Pro is projecting that Sonic 2’s wins over FB3 are likely to continue, as they see it taking the top spot next weekend, not only beating FB3 but also Dreamworks’ The Bad Guys, which opens this weekend:
Of course, while BOP’s projections have been relatively accurate, they are usually off a bit in one direction or another, so Sonic 2’s return to the top spot isn’t guaranteed. Sonic 2’s overall success will also depend on its international performance, which currently sits at $112 million.
*** SPOILER WARNING:THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS PLOT DETAILS FROM THE END OF SONIC 2 ***
I am a Knuckles fan. His name is my online handle, which I’ve been using consistently since the early days of the SEGA forums. I love his moves, his lore, and even his weird comic series. So, naturally, I was excited when Paramount announced a Knuckles-centric TV series a few months ago, starring the red, dreadlocked knucklehead. It wasn’t long before my worry over Sonic 2 fumbling things tempered that excitement with anxiety, but now that I’ve seen the movie that anxiety has given way to enthusiasm. Knuckles was the best thing in that movie and I am ready for a show about him.
But…what exactly will the Knuckles series be? All we know about it is that it’ll be a live action series on Paramount Plus. I can’t imagine something like that being done without a sizable budget akin to Disney+’s MCU and Star Wars offerings. That is an assumption I will be running with for this article. What do I want from the Knuckles series? A lot, but I’d like to think my hopes are at least somewhat realistic (yes, including this first one.)
It’s Time to Go Off-World
The Sonic movies have been consistently teasing us with a larger universe. We’ve been given brief glimpses of Sonic’s home and the mushroom planet, Tails has talked about a “village,” and Knuckles’ introduction was even preceded by strange masked aliens, initially introduced in the Sonic 2 Pre-Quill comic.
It’s high time the Sonic Movie Universe make good on those teases and actually take us somewhere. A planet hopping space adventure would be the perfect backdrop for a TV show. Likewise, a TV show is a great place to flesh out multiple locations beyond Earth in the Sonic Movie Universe. I wouldn’t expect most of these locations to be especially fantastical or grand for purely budgetary reasons, but I will definitely take “generic desert planet” and “rusty cheap-looking backwater planet” over “Knuckles goes to New Jersey.”
Make it Knuckles, Sonic and Tails’ First Adventure Together
Yes, this is a Knuckles show, but that doesn’t mean Sonic and Tails can’t get in on the action! Sonic 2 served as an origin for the trio coming together as friends, but there is no better medium for their first proper adventure than a TV show. Explore their chemistry. Let them talk and explore their interactions outside of the context of a movie climax. Let Sonic be the fish out of water as he’s taken to places Knuckles is more familiar with.
As fun as Knuckles is, I think he was at his best when he had Sonic and Tails to bounce off of, so it’d be a shame to separate them for his small screen debut. Let Knuckles have the main plot and the spotlight, but allow Sonic and Tails to tag along for the ride.
Bring Back Knuckles’ People…and Make Them the Bad Guys
Look: I don’t care what Knuckles said, Longclaw didn’t wipe out his entire tribe. They are alive, and if they are meant to be dead, undead them, because they would make the perfect villains for this series. It is already firmly established in these movies that the echidnas are the power-hungry aggressors. They were the ones who created the Master Emerald, they were the ones who used it for war, and they were the ones who hunted down the owls and attempted to take Sonic’s power. They can certainly be three dimensional villains. Giving them a reason to be so power hungry would only make them more interesting. But ultimately, Knuckles needs to come down against them.
So how could this work? Have them abandon Knuckles. When they went after Longclaw and failed to capture Sonic, they began searching the universe relentlessly for him and the map to the Master Emerald rather than return to him. This would not only demonstrate how far his people have fallen that they would rather hunt for power than go back for one of their own, it would also allow the SMU to explore a different kind of familial loss, and the differences between family by blood and family by love, and why one is more meaningful.
Heck, Tikal could even be introduced as an unwilling pawn of her people. When the Master Emerald is used at the end of Sonic 2, the echidnas learn that Knuckles has it. Tikal is sent under the lie that she’s looking for their people. Knuckles, upon discovering they are alive, agrees to help her find them. Sonic and Tails won’t let him go alone. This gives us the motivation for the planet-hopping adventure as they go from planet to planet, searching for clues, Tikal subtly pointing them in the right direction. This was, in reality, done to separate the Master Emerald from its protectors.
Some version of this, where the story potential for Knuckles’ people is utilized, and Knuckles is made to see the truth about them, feels like the perfect place to take this. It wraps up standing plot points, gives Knuckles a unique group of villains who are personal to him, strengthens his newfound bonds, and gives our tri-colored trio their first test as the Master Emerald’s guardians.
If You’re Going to Focus on Humans, Focus on the Wachowskis
I am going to say something potentially controversial: Tom and Maddie Wachowski are the only decent human characters in the Sonic movies. Everyone else is an annoying cartoon caricature of a human, Jim Carrey worst of all. But even if I liked Carrey, he shouldn’t be here, as Knuckles ought to have his own villain. So since a live action Sonic tv series will inevitably need to spend time with humans on Earth for budgetary reasons, they might as well flesh out the best ones.
Their plot? Well, jumping off my previous point: have them be the ones protecting the Master Emerald while the furballs are out in space. Maybe a few different parties, one of whom were hired by the echidnas, are after the gemstone and they need to go on their own adventure to keep it away from them. They can be hunted by those weird masked bird people from Sonic 2, some random humanoid aliens in make-up, and maybe eventually a certain…bat jewel thief.
Alternatively, if Knuckles and co need a human companion, Maddie can go with them and get some much-needed screen time, and Tom can get paired with Rachel and they’re made to hash their whole thing out.
Bring in Rouge
So if you ignored this article’s spoiler warnings, chances are you already know that Sonic 3 will have Shadow, effectively setting it up to be an adaptation of Sonic Adventure 2. You know who you can’t leave out of any version of SA2? Rouge. Problem is, with Sonic 3 set up to be a story about Shadow, Rouge will almost certainly take a backseat, much like Tails did in Sonic 2. That’s why Rouge absolutely needs to be in the Knuckles series.
There are multiple reasons to introduce Rouge here: she is the closest thing Knuckles has to his own adversary and rival in the games. They are both treasure hunters, and both have an interest in the Master Emerald. So bringing her in as a villain for Knuckles to eventually deal with only makes sense. With the Master Emerald and GUN now present in the SMU, Rouge also has something to do in regards to her own plotline. She has a jewel to hunt and a faction that can employ her skills for covert ops on Earth.
Bare minimum, the Knuckles series ought to lay the groundwork for Rouge’s role in Sonic 3.
Heck, Bring In Some Other Sonic Characters Too
The great thing about TV shows is that you can give a character or group of characters a complete story in a single episode’s run time. The Knuckles series isn’t just a good place to set up some stuff for Sonic 3, it’s a great place to set up stuff for the franchise as a whole going forward.
You know what would be cool? An episode where Knuckles just had to work with the Chaotix. While Sonic, Tails, and whoever else is with them go off to explore a planet or check out its local cuisine (mostly off-screen), Knuckles hires the bumbling detectives to find the next clue for finding his people or whatever he’s doing. Hijinks, of course, ensue.
A few episodes just establishing characters while Knuckles is on his adventure is a stellar way to bring new Sonic characters into the franchise.
Let the IDW Creative Team Work on an Episode or Two
You know who’s been consistently producing the best Sonic stories for the past four years? IDW. Yes, they’re busy people. Ian Flynn is working on a friggin game. I don’t care. Flynn has experience working in TV, Evan Stanley’s been doing great work at IDW for years, bring one or both of them in for an episode or two. I’m sure you all can work it out.
Nothing would make the fandom more excited for the series than their involvement, and they’re input would be nothing but a net benefit for the show. Please make this happen!
Dive Into the History of the Chaos Emeralds
Sonic 2 remained fairly vague on the details regarding the history of the Master Emerald and the Chaos Emeralds. Since Knuckles is the character most directly connected to the gemstones, a series about him ought to dive deeper into their history. How did the echidnas get their hands on the chaos emeralds? How did they create the Master Emerald? What other sorts of conflicts were the emeralds involved in? Heck, where did the Chaos Emeralds come from? SEGA has always been cagey about the Chaos Emerald’s origins, but that’s no reason for the movies to not touch on that in some way.
Whether its Tikal, Knuckles’ people, or a plot exposition fairy, the Knuckles series is the perfect opportunity to dive deeper. And if this does happen, Chaos and the chao ought to also be brought in, at least in some capacity. Chaos was the original Master Emerald guardian after all, and we know he wasn’t inside the Master Emerald in this universe. Maybe when the echidnas took the emeralds, he was imprisoned somewhere or something?
Basically, Make This a Weird Sonic Adventure Adaptation Set in Outer Space
I mean, this is basically what this whole article has been leading to, hasn’t it? Sonic Adventure was, in many ways, basically Knuckles’ story. His people, home, and the Master Emerald all sit at the center of the game’s events. It is the perfect game to mine for Knuckles-centric plot elements, and the many changes the SMU has made to the echidnas makes the game’s plot elements all the more enticing for a Knuckles TV series.
As I’ve been writing this, I’ve expected that Paramount already knows what it wants from a Knuckles series. So far, their Sonic writers have had a decent idea of what to take from the games. They’ve already grabbed bits and pieces from Sonic Adventure. I just hope they go back to that well again for this.
Headcannon has returned to Sonic to remaster Sonic 3 & Knuckles for Sonic Origins. The developer, which in the past worked on the widescreen mobile remasters for Sonic 1 and 2 and co-developed Sonic Mania, confirmed on their Twitter that they also developed the enhanced, widescreen version of Sonic 3 & Knuckles. This would also appear to confirm that the other versions are indeed ports of the Christian Whitehead remasters.
For Stealth, who started Headcannon, this is the completion of something he has wanted to do for some time. He had this to say on Twitter, “Hey! Remember how I repeatedly said “If Sega wants me to remake Sonic 3 (& Knuckles) I’ll do it”? Well, needing this game to complete their planned #SonicOrigins collection of remakes, Sega asked me to take on this huge task, and I recruited some of my Headcannon buddies to help!”
Headcannon also confirmed that SEGA developed Origins’ menus, integration, and overall presentation.
Sonic 2’s box office take continued to grow at a brisk pace over the last week, as the movie blew past $200 million globally, settling at $235 million as of the end of Monday. This number includes more than $123 million at the US box office, and $112 million overseas. Unlike last time, Sonic 2 didn’t manage to maintain its top box office spot globally, falling behind Fantastic Beasts 3. In the US, it made $29.3 million over its second weekend, taking second place behind FB3’s $42.2 million, and falling 60% from its opening weekend.
Interestingly, while Sonic 2 lost the weekend, it did apparently have a very good Easter Monday in the US, where it regained its top spot and even beat its returns from the previous Monday. It made $4.5 million on that day versus FB3’s $3.7 million. That’s not only 4% higher then what Sonic 2 made on its first Monday, that’s 275% higher than what Sonic 1 made on its second Monday.
Right now, Sonic 2 appears to be on track to surpass its predecessor, though exactly how well it will do still depends on whether or not it has legs. With Dreamworks’ The Bad Guys and Marvel’s Doctor Strange 2 debuting over the next few weeks, Sonic 2’s box office competition is going to become a lot more fierce.
Continue to stay tuned to Sonic Stadium for all the latest news on Sonic 2!
*** SPOILER WARNING:THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS PLOT DETAILS AND SCREENSHOTS FROM THE END OF SONIC 2 ***
When I went into the first Sonic movie more than two years ago, I wasn’t expecting much. I was incredibly cynical about the whole affair, in fact. “Sure,” I thought, “they made the design better. But plenty of terrible movies can still look nice.” Then, the Paramount and SEGA logos rolled, and the movie spent the next 13 minutes winning me over, before one moment finally sealed it. It demonstrated this movie was going to be more than pop culture references and Jim Carrey being Jim Carrey. This was a movie about a lonely kid that, shockingly, had a heart. Here, SEGA’s cool blue mascot was in a bad place, and desperately needed to find a way to move forward.
By the end of it he did, and it all started at a baseball field.
After giving the audience a tour of his adopted home, Green Hills, Sonic goes to a baseball game. A team wins, and they celebrate together, something Sonic is clearly envious of. Later, after nightfall, Sonic takes to the field and uses his speed to pretend to be an entire team. As a scene, there is a lot to like here: it features a creative use of Sonic’s speed, it shows what he’s capable of, and it also gives more screen time to establishing his character. The personalities Sonic gives his “teammates” are cute, and Ben Schwartz does a superb job bringing the whole thing to life. But then Sonic hits the ball, fails to catch it, “wins” the game by a hair, readies himself for the same sort of adulation he saw earlier only to experience…nothing. Because he’s alone.
For a moment, his cheerful façade cracks, and Sonic does something he never does in the games: he loses his cool. Overwhelmed by his loneliness, he unleashes all his pent-up frustrations by running laps around the field. This leads to a power outage across the entire Pacific Northwest, which naturally gets the attention of the US government and leads to Sonic getting discovered. More importantly, it also starts Sonic on a two-movie-long journey to finally experience what he saw on that field.
Two years later, Sonic was playing baseball again, but this time he wasn’t alone. He had an entire family to play with, celebrate with, and go off for ice cream with. As a scene, it acts as a very effective bookend to Sonic’s journey to end his loneliness and find his place in the world. Years after losing one family, he’s found another.
The through line these scenes book end ultimately make up the emotional core of these otherwise fairly trivial popcorn flicks, which makes them probably the most important ones of the entire film series so far. As cool as any of the action sequences are, and as effective as the characterization is for Sonic, Knuckles, and Tails, it would all mean next-to-nothing without that emotional core. Enjoyable movies aren’t built on action, pop culture jokes, weird Jim Carrey antics and Olive Garden gift cards. They are built on character, more specifically making audiences care about those characters.
Caring about Sonic and wanting to see him find that family he so desperately needs gives those action scenes weight. They make the bad jokes and Jim Carrey antics bearable. They make Sonic feel like a character and not a walking collection of dated references, and they give him a means to connect to characters like Tom, Tails, and Knuckles, creating the most effective and impactful scenes across both movies.
Of course, plenty of movies do the “found family” thing better, with Pixar’s Luca and Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy executing it more effectively. The concept is also nothing new for Sonic as a franchise. Tails is Sonic’s little brother in the games, and the Freedom Fighters are basically Sonic’s surrogate family in both SatAM and Archie. Regardless, if someone had told me a few years ago that I’d get a little emotional at a scene in a Sonic movie where Sonic called a human “dad,” I’d call you a damn liar.
These movies had everything going against them from the beginning. From out of touch executives, to the terrible track record of video game adaptations, to how regularly terrible movies with cartoon animal sidekicks usually are! And yet, somehow, Sonic was able to find box office, audience, and (modest) critical success. Twice. Some will put the credit on the redesign and “listening to fans,” but the actual reason is much more fundamental: the movie’s writers were smart enough to give the characters heart, rooted in a game of baseball, that sprang forth into the most successful video game film franchise of all time.
As we move forward into a wider cinematic universe, I can only hope the Sonic Movie Universe’s creatives don’t lose sight of this. That heart is something that must be built upon and expanded, in order to keep audiences invested in these characters and their adventures.
Everyone on Sonic Talk has finally seen Sonic 2, and we’ve brought our thoughts to the podcast alongside our guest and boss Dreadknux!
With five different views, good discussion is guaranteed! But of course, with loads of people comes a lengthy discussion, as we dissect and debate the entirety of the movie and its characters in depth. So be sure to grab a snack and drink before hand, or save us for when you’ve got some chores or work to do! Either way, check us out below:
EDIT: Sonic 2’s final box office open numbers were released, and they beat the $71 million estimate, landing at $72 million. We’ve updated the article accordingly.
It’s official: Sonic 2 is a worldwide hit. After making $25.5 million in overseas markets a week ago, the movie has since made an additional $116.5 million as its opened across more countries including the US. This includes an estimated $72.1 million opening in the US, beating its predecessor’s opening by $14 million, giving Sonic 2 the biggest opening weekend of any video game movie in US history. This is also the biggest opening Jim Carrey has ever had.
So far, Sonic 2 has been matching or exceeding its predecessor in most markets, and it has easily beaten off what box office competition it had. What will really determine Sonic 2’s success is whether or not it has legs. The original movie managed to earn $319 million before theaters shut down. Despite that, Sonic 1 managed to become the top grossing video game movie in US history, earning $149 million. Sonic 2 has earned nearly half of that in its opening weekend. In order to become the highest grossing video game movie globally, it’ll need beat Detective Pikachu’s $434 million and Warcraft’s $439 million.
With Secrets of Dumbledore debuting this weekend and expecting a $50 million box office, its unlikely Sonic 2 will stay at #1 for multiple weeks like it did last time, but it doesn’t need to in order to break some records. Only time will tell how far Sonic 2 will go, but we’ll be sure to keep you all updated.
Sonic Talk episodes are finally returning to our Youtube, and we’re starting with the latest episode, recorded March 31. In this, we talk about the Sonic 2 Pre-quill comic, the last bit of Sonic movie news before the release of the movie, and Tails’ debut as a Vtuber, among other things!
But first, we talk about the latest things we’ve been playing, including Kirby and the Forgotten Land and Mario Kart 8’s DLC. Check out the episode below:
Sonic 2 has opened in first place across the US, crushing its box office competition, including Sony’s Morbius and the Michael Bay’s Ambulance, reportedly raking in $26.5 million, beating not only initial expectations but also last night’s numbers released by insider sources (posted below). This means that Sonic 2’s three-day opening forecast has also been increased again, to an impressive $67-$69 million! The higher end of this forecast is just shy of the originals $70 million four-day open, and well above its $58 million haul.
We still have no word on where Sonic 2’s box office stands internationally as of today. In addition to the US, it has also opened in over 20 other markets this week, including South Korea. Its overseas take from the markets it opened in last week still stand at $30 million as of Wednesday.
Will Sonic 2 continue to beat expectations and beat the $69 million estimate? We’ll know by Monday!
Original version of this story posted below.
Though the final numbers are not in, an estimate of Sonic 2’s Friday box office results have been leaked to Deadline by insider sources, and they appear to be above expectations. Sonic 2 is now set for what appears to be a $23-$26 million opening day haul (this includes the $6.25 million from preview screenings). This number not only puts it above the original’s $20 million opening day haul, but also sets it up for a significantly better opening weekend. Sonic 2 is now expected to make $60-$65 million this weekend, which not only blows past its initially predicted $50 million opening, but also puts it ahead of its predecessor’s haul, $58.
We will eventually update this post with the final numbers.
The first US box office numbers are in, and they are good. Sonic 2 made $6.2 Million from Wednesday early access and Thursday preview screenings. The movie’s Thursday preview alone made $5 million, a whopping 66% increase over the original’s $3 million, though Sonic 2’s previews did start earlier. Nevertheless, according to Deadline this sets the movie up for a $50 million weekend opening, though it could go higher. For comparison, the first Sonic movie opened at $58 million over a holiday weekend, though it also beat initial expectations by a wide margin.
With Sonic 2’s overseas box office already reaching $30 million as of Wednesday, and with Sonic 2 opening in over 20 other markets this weekend, its not hard to imagine the movie earning $100 million by Monday. We’ll continue to follow Sonic 2’s box office numbers, so stay tuned!
A bunch of the reviews for Sonic 2 are now in, and the results are clear: it’s fresh! With 85 reviews out, it seems pretty certain that Sonic 2’s going to be accomplishing its predecessor’s feat of landing in fresh territory on the review aggregate. Though the score is likely still going to jump around (it was 67% when I first began drafting this article this morning), Sonic 2 is now unlikely to fall into either “rotten” (below 60%) or “certified fresh” (above 75%) territory, but still has a good chance of reviewing better than its predecessor (63%).
Along with the rating, we also have a consensus of the overall critical response, “It isn’t as much fun as the little blue guy’s greatest games, but if you enjoyed the first film, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 serves as a generally acceptable sequel.” Since the number keeps moving around, and movie’s page seems to go back to older versions at random, we’ve gone ahead and included a screen cap of the page below:
This means that Sonic 2 will join the ranks of a handful of other “fresh” rated video game movies, including Angry Birds 2 (73%) and Detective Pikachu (68%). This also makes Sonic the first video game movie franchise to achieve this more than once!
While video adaptations have, overall, been improving over the years, that improvement has mostly been seen in the realm of TV and streaming, where video game shows like The Cuphead Show, Castlevania, Shenmue the Animation, and Arcane have been met with acclaim from fans and critics. Halo, Paramount’s other big video game adaptation, has also managed to achieve a 68% fresh rating, albeit the reception from fans has been significantly more…mixed.
We will be keeping an eye on Sonic 2’s rating, and we may post an update in the coming weeks. We may also post an article summarizing opinions from both critics and the Sonic community. In the mean time, you an check out our own review! You can find the current Rotten Tomatoes rating here.
Sonic 2 had its first early access screenings in the US yesterday, but today, the movie is officially opening in theaters across the country! And now that people in the US can watch the movie, you can expect us over at Sonic Stadium to step up our coverage of the movie with further articles and a special episode of the Sonic Talk podcast, airing on our Twitch at 3PM Wednesday. You can expect any articles with spoilers to be marked.
Check out our review here. You can check out our Twitch channel here. You can find my a my spoiler-filled stream, where I play games while I give my hot takes on the movie, there!
Another Sonic game is coming to Apple’s game subscription service, Apple Arcade, at some point in the near future. Little else is currently known about it, but if its anything like Sonic’s previous game on the platform, Sonic Racing, it will likely just be a conversion of vanilla Sonic Dash with all of the micro-transactions and ads removed. Neither of these elements are allowed in games on the service. Whether Sonic Dash+ has anything unique, we’ll just have to wait and see.
Check out the tweet below for the announcement, and for the link that’ll let you sign up to be notified when the game is available.
Team Dark may have been a consistent team for years in both the games and Archie comics, but they no longer exist as anything but an out-of-unverse brand, according to IDW Sonic and Sonic Frontiers writer Ian Flynn. When a fan asked Flynn on his podcast what kind of base Team Dark would have, Flynn answered they wouldn’t have a base, because SEGA does not consider them a team.
“Team Dark isn’t a thing. It’s an out-of-universe brand, apparently. They are not a unit, they are not even friends,” Flynn said, “They don’t do mission things together unless the story has them doing it.” He want on to state his belief that Team Dark makes the most sense out of all of the teams (aside from the Chaotix), and that he doesn’t like this.
You can find the answer on his latest podcast, embedded below. The answer starts at 10:20.
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