Sonic The Hedgehog 3: Release Date, Cast, And More

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In a time where video games are more cinematic and story-driven than ever, it's kind of remarkable "Sonic the Hedgehog" remains one of the few properties to successfully make the leap to the big screen. The original video games are about as simple as they come plot-wise, following Sonic and his allies as they navigate a series of obstacle courses beset by random spikes, lava pits, and more in order to prevent the evil, mustachioed Doctor Robotnik from enslaving all of Sonic's friends and turning them into robots.

So far as the complexity of the mythology goes, it's not exactly "Game of Thrones" or "Lord of the Rings" (or even first-edition "Dungeons & Dragons" for that matter).

Perhaps the thing that makes the first two "Sonic the Hedgehog" movies work is that they're just as weird as the games that inspired them, albeit in different ways. Between their many callbacks to the 1990s (the decade that birthed the "Sonic" franchise), the Olive Garden running gag that wasn't actually paid for by Olive Garden, or the way they balance earnest messages about found-family with an irreverent tone bordering on sardonic, it's little wonder people seem equally inclined to enjoy these films as they find them exhausting.

If you're in the former of those two camps (and presumably you are; why else would you be reading this?), then there's good news! "Sonic the Hedgehog 3" is now actively moving forward at Paramount. Here's everything you need to know about the sequel.

Sonic the Hedgehog 3 release date and where to watch it

Paramount announced it would be making "Sonic the Hedgehog 3" during its Viacom Investor Event in February 2022, along with a Paramount+ spin-off series centered on the honorable but easily-duped Knuckles the Echidna from "Sonic the Hedgehog 2." The third "Sonic" film is now officially scheduled to open in theaters on December 20, 2024, which is notable for being the same day 20th Century Studios intends to release James Cameron's as-yet-untitled "Avatar 3." Clearly, Paramount is feeling confident after the second "Sonic" movie grossed $402 million at this year's spring box office (more than four times its budget) and hopes to continue courting families by releasing the sequel over the winter holidays in 2024.

Are we in for a box office battle of short, blue, and quilled versus tall, blue, and pony-tailed? A lot can change in two years, so who knows if both those movies will stay put where they're at (least of all with "Wicked: Part 1" set to arrive five days after). For now, though, "Sonic the Hedgehog 3" is set to speed into the Green Hill Zone on December 20, 2024.

What is Sonic the Hedgehog 3 about?

The first "Sonic the Hedgehog" movie saw Sonic banish Doctor Robotnik to the Mushroom Planet and settle down in the small town of Green Hills, Montana, along with his human caretakers, Tom and Maddie Wachowski. By the time the sequel picked up, Sonic was trying (and failing) to find his footing as a crime-fighter when a vengeful Robotnik emerged, having made his way back to Earth after tricking Knuckles into aiding him (like I said, Knuckles is honorable but easily-duped). Luckily, with an assist from his newfound ally "Tails" the flying fox, Sonic was able to convince Knuckles to join him in defeating Robotnik again, and the three settled down as a family with the Wachowskis.

Now that I've summarized the extremely serious plot of the "Sonic the Hedgehog" movies so far, what about "Sonic the Hedgehog 3?" The second film's mid-credits scene revealed the existence of Shadow the Hedgehog, a nega-version of Sonic who will no doubt serve as the next big antagonist. As for Doctor Robotnik, his fate remains up in the air for the time being, for reasons we'll be getting into shortly.

The cast and crew of Sonic the Hedgehog 3

It's expected "Sonic the Hedgehog 1 and 2" director Jeff Fowler will be back at the helm for "Sonic the Hedgehog 3," with series writers Pat Casey and Josh Miller once again returning to pen the script. Ben Schwartz (Sonic), Tails (Colleen O'Shaughnessey), and Idris Elba (Knuckles) are also all-but-confirmed to reprise their roles from the previous "Sonic" movies, as are James Marsden (Tom), Tika Sumpter (Maddie), and Natasha Rothwell (Maddie's sister Rachel).

The big question is whether Jim Carrey will be reprising his role as Robotnik for "Sonic the Hedgehog 3," having previously announced he was mulling retirement after the second "Sonic" film. Carrey's scenery-chewing as the diabolical scientist has been arguably the biggest highlight of the franchise so far, enough so that it would be a bit of a shame if he didn't return to give the not-so-good doctor a proper sendoff. On the other hand, "Sonic the Hedgehog 2" ended with Robotnik playing air guitar while controlling a giant Eggman robot, so Carrey would be forgiven if he decided to bow out now, feeling there was simply nowhere for him to go but down from here.