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We've been watching the Sonic The Hedgehog movie build its cast for a couple months now, but one key component has remained a mystery: the identity of the actor who would be voicing the titular character. Now that information is finally out there, and it looks like Sonic will be voiced by up-and-comer Ben Schwartz, best known for his work on Parks and Recreation.
News of the casting comes from Variety, which notes that Schwartz is the fourth actor to come aboard Sonic the Hedgehog - which will be a CGI/Live-Action hybrid film. James Marsden came aboard to play the human protagonist in the story, and since then we've heard about Jim Carrey voicing the villainous Doctor Robotnik; and Tika Sumpter playing the female lead. The feature is being made as the directorial debut of filmmaker Jeff Fowler, who earned an Oscar nomination back in 2005 for his animated short film Gopher Broke (a nomination he shared with Deadpool director Tim Miller, who is aboard Sonic The Hedgehog as a producer).
Ben Schwartz's career goes back all the way to 2006 when he was on an episode of Late Night With Conan O'Brien - but the real first success he found was on the internet, working with collaborators like Donald Glover. After years of bit parts and small projects, he really started to get noticed thanks to his supporting role on Parks and Recreation as the annoying-as-hell Jean-Ralphio - who has gained a legacy as a fan-favorite character.
Since then Ben Schwartz has not only gotten plenty of live-action work, starring for years on the Showtime series House of Lies, but his career as a voice actor has also taken off. He currently voices characters on three different major animated shows - BoJack Horseman, Ducktales, and the new Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - and obviously Sonic The Hedgehog is kind of a big deal in that realm of his career.
Not much has been revealed just yet about what we can expect story-wise from Sonic The Hedgehog, though the expectation is that the movie will see the eponymous hero go toe-to-toe with the aforementioned Doctor Robotnik, who has a long history of stealing magical emeralds and trapping animals in robots. Production should begin in earnest in the coming weeks/months, as Paramount Pictures has already carved out a noteworthy release date for the project. Aiming for the Thanksgiving crowd, the feature is currently scheduled to arrive just before the holiday next year, on November 15, 2019. It's an exciting developing project that we here at CinemaBlend are definitely keeping a very close eye on, so as we get closer and closer to cameras rolling, be sure to check back here on the site for all of the latest updates and info.