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Hyderabad: If you’re reading this, you’ve most likely played for hours, controlling this fast, blue character in the iconic video game, Sonic The Hedgehog. Today, i.e. June 23 2021, the world’s fastest hedgehog turned 30 and it has been one of the most popular video game characters globally, spawning animated series, comic books and hit live-action films.
Originally called Mr. Needlemouse, the quirky character Sonic was created by Japanese video game giant Sega Corporation, basing the look and character attributes on Michael Jackson, Santa Claus and Bill Clinton. Using Jackson’s boots, Santa’s belt buckle and Bill Clinton’s cheeky nature and Mickey Mouse’s body, the character was created by Naoto Ohshima.
In fact, Michael Jackson reciprocated Sonic’s team’s love for him as the King of Pop signed a deal to compost music for the third instalment of the franchise, though it was cancelled later after the musician was involved in allegations of child abuse.
In addition to Michael Jackson, Masato Nakamura, a Japanese pop star also played a role in influencing the game series, as he composed the music for both the original and its sequel.
The first live-action movie, released in 2020, starred Ben Schwartz as Sonic and Jim Carrey as Dr. Robotnik, the primary antagonist. It was a major success in the United States and Japan, grossing over $319 million, leading to a planned sequel that is slated for a release on April 8, 2022.
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