Director Jeff Fowler Goes Inside SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 2

As director Jeff Fowler explains it, the Sonic we meet in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is going have changed and evolved from the first film, which is something he'll need given the new threats he faces.

"Where we left him with the first movie, Sonic really was coming into his own," says Fowler, "with his powers and starting to understand them. In fact, one of the most important lines at the end of the movie is, 'I'm not gonna use my powers to run away anymore, I'm gonna use them to protect my friends.' And that is such a heroic concept, but what does that actually mean? There was a climactic moment at the end of the first movie where he was avble to defeat Robotnic and send him off to the far reaches of space and the muhroom planet. But that doesn't mean he's a complete hero overnight. He was victorious, but he's still got a ways to go to really understand."

He and other creatives involved looked back at what they felt worked about the first movie and decided to go bigger with those elements: action, humor and heart. 

"The most important thing," says Fowler, "is not to lose sight of the fact that people connected with Sonic in such a great way. On the first film, emotionally he was relatable. He was a character who needed a friend and that was all very grounded emotionally. I think audiences were really able to relate to him as a character and just to really become invested in him. With the second movie, we want to keep the heart that really allows these films to connect with the audience. Sonic's a little older now, he's more of a teenager trying to understand his purpose. There are still a lot of lessons that need to be learned."

And learn he will as Sonic not only encounters his friend Tails, but goes up against the returning Dr. Robotnik and the introduction of Knuckles, as voiced by Idris Elba. "He is such a cool character," the director enthuses. "He's the last of the Echidna, who are a very proud warrior race that has gotten itself extinct by virtue of their own aggression. And because he's the last of his kind, he has this deep sense of obligation for his people. One of the most important things to know about Knuckles is his relationship to the master Emerald, which is such a holy grail in the Sonic universe. We figured it's a great thing to bring into the movie story, because it gives us great scope and great stakes: the whole universe could be threatened if it falls into the wrong hands. 

"The games are loaded with such great action," he closes, "so we just really looked at that and said, 'How do we take this?' And we just wanted to go big and give fans big scren spectacle and scope, and just blow them away with the action."

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