Movies based on video games are notoriously difficult. From early efforts like Super Mario Bros. and Mortal Kombat in the 90s to more recent attempts such as Warcraft, very few have found what most would consider success.
The Resident Evil and Tomb Raider franchises are perhaps the best examples of what can be done with a game-based story, but perhaps only for the number of sequels they’ve spawned. But that all changed over the weekend with the box office debut of Sonic the Hedgehog, a live action movie that was destined for the bargain bin before the Internet intervened.
Paramount Pictures latest got off to a rocky start last year when the first trailer for Sonic the Hedgehog dropped. Fans were appalled by the blue hedgehog’s appearance – simply put, he looked very weird and a bit creepy. The uproar was so intense that the studio had no choice but to postpone the film’s launch for three months in order to “fix” Sonic.
Surprisingly enough, it worked. The new and improved Sonic was leaps and bounds better than the first effort, allowing fans to focus on the film and its other characters, including Jim Carrey as Dr. Robotnik. The extra time is now paying off at the box office, too.
Paramount this morning said it expects Sonic the Hedgehog to hit $70 million over the four-day holiday weekend after bringing in $16.5 million on Sunday. With the performance, Sonic will go down in the record books as the best domestic opening for a movie based on a video game across three- and four-day openings. It’ll also be Carrey’s second best domestic opening behind Bruce Almighty.