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At this point, it's far from clear when we'll actually see movies in theaters again. Movies that were pushed back from April and May into July were then pushed into August and now many of those have been pushed back again. Movies like Avatar 2, that we weren't even expecting to see for a year and a half are now a year further away. Between delayed releases, and delayed productions it's going to take a couple of years at least for the industry to sort out this mess. And yet, it seems that Paramount is still feeling confident enough to set a release date for a movie that hasn't even been on the calendar before now, because Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is now set for April 8, 2022.
Along with the reshuffling of many existing film projects, like Top Gun: Maverick and A Quiet Place Part 2, Variety reveals that Paramount announced the addition of the Sonic sequel. While the announcement that the sequel was officially happening came back in May, the project wasn't given a date until now. The original Sonic the Hedgehog was one of the last movies to get a real chance at release in theaters that saw real success. As a result, the movie is still, due to the lack of new releases, the second highest-grossing movie in the world for 2020.
It almost feels like an act of bravery to set a release date for a movie that hasn't even started filming yet. Assuming that Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is going to be the same, mostly, live-action, project, then even the digital effects work, that could technically get worked on with other parts of production shut down, won't even be able to get started until filming is complete.
Of course, with a release date that's just under two years away, there's still plenty of time to hit that release. As long as things are back to something vaguely resembling normal by next spring, then Sonic the Hedgehog 2 should have no problems. And if that's not the case, we likely will have even bigger problems to deal with.
Of course, with no real plan to reopen theaters and movies getting perpetually pushed back we could see a domino effect that ends up rolling into the spring of 2022, so Sonic the Hedgehog 2 could still end up getting delayed even if only to make room for something else that got delayed in front of it.
Sonic the Hedgehog is certainly in a class by itself as one of the few clear box office hits of 2020, and as a video game movie to boot. While we're seeing more and more movies based on games, few of them end up becoming the franchise studios are looking for.