Sonic the Hedgehog used to be quite the icon in gaming in the '90s but has declined in popularity, thanks to some underwhelming releases for the character. Sega is hoping to soon turn that all around as Sonic will soon star in his very own CGI/live-action hybrid movie racing to theaters in 2019. The voice behind Sonic the Hedgehog will be none-other-than Parks and Recreation's Ben Schwartz. This is an exciting career move for the 36-year-old actor, who has been present in the game for a while but hasn't gotten the chance to play an icon such as Sonic. The part wasn't just handed to Schwartz though, as he recently explained. In his words:
The process of me getting Sonic was a long one, a really long one. It started about a year ago. The director, Jeff [Fowler] called me, and he said, 'You know, the role is yours.' I put in a lot of work to get that one. I really wanted it, so I was very, very excited.
During a Buzzfeed episode of Spill the Tea (via @o_Azul35), Ben Schwartz said when he found out that he was going to play Sonic, he couldn't help but do a Tiger Woods fist-pump. His hard work paid off, and the actor will have a hand in bringing the character into the 21st century. Recently, Schwartz also has brought another nostalgic character back to life as he currently voices Dewey on Disney Channel's Ducktales reboot. The voice actor lends his voice to Netflix's BoJack Horseman, and worked with Bill Hader to create BB-8's dialogue in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. He is of course known best for playing fan-favorite Jean-Ralphio on Parks and Recreation and Clyde Oberholt on five seasons of House of Lies.
The Sonic the Hedgehog movie is already packed with talent, as Jim Carrey is set to play a live-action Doctor Robotnik aka Doctor Eggman and James Marsden was also cast as the live-action lead in the film. The project will be the directorial debut for Jeff Fowler, with his collaborator and Deadpool director Tim Miller onboard to produce.
CGI/live-action hybrid films have recently been used for family features such as Peter Rabbit along with the Smurfs and Paddington films. Movies based on video games haven't always been successful but following the success of The Lego Movie, studios are looking to add more family films based on video games. Besides Sonic the Hedgehog, Paramount has Detective Pikachu also set for release in 2019 and a Minecraft movie is also in the works. Sonic the Hedgehog is currently in production and will be released on November 15, 2019.