Earlier this month, it was revealed that the director of Deadpool, Tim Miller, would not be returning to the sequel. This was due to creative differences not with the studio but with Deadpool start Ryan Reynolds. The two were apparently at odds over how big and stylized they wanted to go with the sequel, with Ryan Reynolds wanting to keep things smaller and kitschy, and Miller wanting to go far grander. The split was amicable. Ryan Reynolds and FOX are fine in finding a replacement director – Deadpool 2 will carry on. It is Tim Miller, however, who’s career trajectory is far more interesting to watch out for. Here’s a middle-aged guy who, prior to Deadpool, was known solely for directing video game trailers. Tim’s directing projects include Warner Bros. Batman: Arkham City, Sony’s DC Universe Online, and Dante’s Inferno. He made his first motion picture debut with Deadpool. And as history goes, it became the highest grossing Rated R movie of all time. He proved himself and then some. He’s earned the right to make whatever the hell he wants and be given an almost blank check.
So what does Tim Miller want to do, what’s next on his list? Well, Sonic The Hedgehog, of course!
Yes, Sonic The Hedgehog, the classic video game character from SEGA is getting his very own motion picture. Miller will be using his pull to produce the movie. He’ll also be passing on the directing torch to Jeff Fowler, a collaborator from Blur Studios, the same studio that made all those video game trailers/commercials. Patrick Casey and Josh Miller are writing the movie, which is envisioned as a CG / live-action hybrid family adventure. Plot details remain scarce, although the whole “CG / live-action hybrid” thing implies human characters will be involved.
Miller’s involvement will likely be minimal. He’s going to Exec Produce, which really doesn’t mean a whole lot. What Sony did, really, was bought themselves a trendy name. However, both Miller and Fowler have found their beginnings in video games. So if anyone was to adapt Sonic into a big-screen movie, these would be the guys. Add to that, Fowler received an Oscar nomination in 2005 for his short film Gopher Broke, which Miller produced. See the short below:
It’s no doubt that Miller and Fowler’s careers are just beginning…but… SONIC?!
First launched in 1991, the Sonic the Hedgehog video game series centers on the bright blue speedster and his friends, including Tails, Knuckles, and Amy Rose, as they try to stop the villainous Doctor Eggman from taking over the world. Sonic is up there with Mario as one of the most iconic video game characters of all time. But it’s such a dated property and one that has progressively gotten more embarrassing and terrible as the years have gone by. While here have been new video games that roll out every few years (arguably getting worse each and every iteration) and there was an animated series or two… it’s not quite the character kids today would rush to the theater for.
But who knows, maybe it takes a really fun and zany CG / live-action hybrid family adventure to bring Sonic back to the forefront. As a side vestment, it’s fascinating to watch directors like Miller, and now Fowler get handed established IPs and emerge as new recognized names in the industry. It’ll be curious to see if Fowler can deliver and what more we’ll see from him.
As for Miller, outside of producer for Sonic, he’s already on the books to team with studio 20th Century Fox to direct Influx, a Mark Bomback-scripted sci-fi thriller intended as the first in a trilogy. Miller and Fowler are also working on the Goon adaptation which had David Fincher attached to produce.