IDRIS ELBA Voicing KNUCKLES THE ECHIDNA on “SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 2”

“Sonic the Hedgehog” from Paramount Pictures, based on the iconic videogame character franchise from Sega, was one of the surprise blockbuster hits of early 2020, and one fun memory to take before COVID-19 overshadowed everything. The film itself had a sequel hook, one that would be followed upon “Sonic the Hedgehog 2,” first teased this past February. Also teased later on, besides the obvious inclusion of Sonic’s sidekick Tails is his rival Knuckles the Echidna. And then, after a few months with no notable updates, the news just broke that Knuckles has just gotten an actor cast to voice him.

Indeed, Yahoo News has it that actor Idris Elba confirmed this past Tuesday, August 10, his inclusion to the cast of “Sonic the Hedgehog 2” as the voice of Knuckles. And according to a new plot blurb following the announcement, Knuckles indeed will make his first appearance in the capacity of an antagonistic figure to the super-fast blue hedgehog, whose voice will be reprised by Ben Schwarz. As for Elba, he has been well-experienced in roles that are part of high adventure stories (the MCU for one), but his latest major voice-acting role is being touted by fans as redemption for his previous CGI outing.

By that, we mean Elba’s appearance as Macavity in Universal’s 2019 big-screen adaptation of “Cats,” which bombed mightily out of audiences being turned off by the “uncanny valley” visual effects to make the actors portraying the cat characters look so unsettlingly cat-like. While Knuckles as an all-CGI character would only require Elba’s voice (he had acted out his “Cats” part in costume, makeup prosthetics and SFX touchups), he will be a bit more effective in the role, a sentiment shared by fans of the actor on social media in the wake of his casting reveal.

“Sonic the Hedgehog 2” brings back Jim Carrey as megalomaniacal mad scientist Dr. Robotnik, who is in search of a new ultra-energy source called the Master Emerald, with Sonic (Ben Schwarz) joined by Tails and his adoptive human family (played by James Marsden and Tika Sumpter) having to stop him. However, Robotnik may have gotten help in the form of Knuckles the Echidna (Idris Elba), appointed guardian of the Master Emerald who believes Sonic to be trying to steal it, which would be dangerous because the Emerald is powerful enough to make or break civilizations.

Paraount Pictures has slated the film to premiere on April 2022. Tails was initially voiced by Colleen O’Shaughnessy in the mid-credits teaser of the first “Sonic” movie, though it seems the role may be recast.

Image courtesy of People

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