Crush 40 has affected the lives of many Sonic The Hedgehog fans, and no one knows that better than the vocalist for Crush 40, Johnny Gioeli. Johnny has been preforming since the age of 11, going on to form the 90’s rock band Hardline alongside his brother, Joey Gioeli.
During this venture, Johnny met SEGA employee, Jun Senoue and together formed what would later be known as, Crush 40. Join Johnny and us in this exclusive interview, as we speak about the origins of Crush 40, how the music was created, Johnny’s take on the Sonic movie and, as stated above, Bagel And Butter and so much more!
Sonic The Hedgehog the movie has been an extremely anticipated film. Since 2013, rights to the film were acquired by Sony Pictures before declaring it a turnaround and selling the rights to Paramount Pictures in 2017.
Since then, its been a crazy, wild ride, beginning with Sonic’s initial design. The first trailer was released on April 30th, 2019, which experienced extreme, negative feedback.
Many fans went online, critiquing the character’s resemblance to its video game counterpart. In a surprising turn of events film director, Jeff Folwer and Paramount pictures decided to delay the film to redesign sonic. The film was originally set for a late 2019 release but was delayed to February 14th, 2020.
The film was redeemed, in November 2019 when a second trailer showcasing a newly designed Sonic was released drawing positive attention from fans and media.
With all this being said, its been a long journey for the Sonic Movie, for not only its cast and crew but also for its production team. Unfortunately, no amount of positive feedback could save visual effects and production company, Moving Picture Company Vancouver from shutting down its doors at the end of 2019. The company was responsible for Sonic’s current redesign. Their last projects were Cats and Sonic The Hedgehog.
On Saturday, January 25th, Sonic The Hedgehog had its blue carpet, world premiere at the Paramount Theatre in Hollywood. For the very first time, the film was screened for an audience.
Ben Schwartz, the voice of Sonic The Hedgehog, went to Twitter to express his experience having watched the film among fans.
The film has yet to face the world’s audience and critique, after all, the redesign fixed the visual aspect of the film, now it’s up to the plot. But it seems Paramount pictures and Ben Schwartz are quite confident the film will surpass fan expectations.
Watch Sonic The Hedgehog in theaters February 14th, 2020
Those who watched Saturday morning cartoons (aka SatAM) in the ’90s may remember Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic Underground. Garry Chalk was one of many voice actors from these shows, voicing Grounder in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and Dr.Robotnik in Sonic Underground, a dystopian version of the Sonic the Hedgehog TV universe.
Garry can be seen among the government officials sitting down during a meeting discussing the ‘anomaly‘ detected. It is unclear if Garry Chalk’s character in the film is more than just a minor cameo, or if there’s more than meets the eye.
Hill Top Zone
A road sign with ‘Hill Top Zone‘ can be seen seconds into the trailer. Hill Top Zone is the fifth Zone in Sonic the Hedgehog 2. The level is most notable for its geographical location, amidst the high peaks of West Side Island, which makes one wonder of its location within the film.
Green Hill Zone
This one’s pretty in your face. Right at the beginning of the trailer, Green Hill Zone can be seen right before Sonic travels into our world. It is unclear if the film will explore more of this zone (or any other) as a setting.
Sonic The Hedgehog Title Screen Emblem
The title screen emblem from Sonic The Hedgehog can be seen on Sonic’s headband. The game was originally released in 1991 for the Sega Mega Drive (Japan) and quickly became one of the most recognizable logos among hardcore Sonic fans.
Many who played Sonic The Hedgehog may remember the giant ring that would appear at the end of a level and teleport the player to special stages. The film drew inspiration from this, having sonic apparently teleport from one part of the world to another. Variations of this ability have been shown throughout the games and TV series.
Misa Amane (Death Note) and Fabiola Iglesias (Black Lagoon)
Among voice actor cameos is Shannon Chan-Kent, a Canadian based voice actress, who has voiced numerous notable characters such as Misa Amane from the hit anime series, Death Note and Fabiola Iglesias from Black Lagoon: Roberta’s Blood Trail.
She is also the singing voice of Pinkie pie, Sonata Dusk and speaking voice of Silver Spoon in My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic.
Jeff Fowler’s Gopher Broke cameo
This film will feature the theatrical, directorial debut of Jeff Fowler, who previously worked on Gopher Broke, a 2004 short, animated film written and directed by Jeff Fowler.
The short film follows a hungry gopher who hatches a clever plan to get a quick snack but discovers that even the best-laid plans can go udderly awry. The opening title can be seen during Sonic’s exploration of the motel room.
A more modern and more ‘realistic‘ version of the Egg-O-Matic can be seen through half of the trailer. Although it has not been confirmed that this is, in fact, a representation of the Egg-O-Matic, it does share some similarities.
Blur Studio, although its name is not a direct reference to Sonic’s nickname “The Blue Blur“, the studio has had ties to the Sonic The Hedgehog games before the film. Blur Studios produced several CGI animated cutscenes for Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic The Hedgehog 2006.
According to an interview, by Di-O-Matic, Inc, with then Animation supervisor Leo Santos, “One particular challenge we had on the Sonic opening cinematic (and the Shadow the Hedgehog cinematics) is the fact that Sonic’s mouth is sometimes on the side, sometimes on the middle.” With Blur Studio’s experience with animating Sonic in the past, why was there a need to redesign?
Doctor Ovi Kintobor or Dr. Ivo Kintobor
This one is probably a long stretch but, Jim Carrey’s portrayal of a ‘thin‘ Robotnik is similar in appearance (somewhat) to that of Doctor Ovi Kintobor, a character that appears in the Sonic the Comic series published by Fleetway Editions in the UK. The character served as a background origin story to the present day Eggman. In other comic series published by Archie Comics, Carrey’s portrayal is similar to that of, alternate universe Robotnik, Dr. Ivo Kintobor, who is kind, generous and friendly.
Needless to say, there will probably be more hidden gems within the movie. Be on the lookout and mark your calendars for February 14th, 2020! Watch the newly released trailer here:
Sonic Revolution is SoCal’s only Sonic The Hedgehog annual convention, although not officially endorsed by SEGA, it provides the best service to ensure Sonic fans get a great sonic experience!
Sonic Revolution was held on June 9th at The Sage Resturant and lounge in Whitter, California with Sonic Team Racing as this year’s theme.
Although the convention was small, it had so much to offer! From an artist ally to a small bar area!
Special guests included Evan Stanley, Ryan Drummond, Sasso Studios, Alan Denton, Greg Hahn, and Bill & Sam Freiberger among others.
During the convention, we got the chance to sit down and speak with voice actor Ryan Drummond, the first actor to voice Sonic in a video game! Watch as we speak about his career origins and more!
Sonic Revolution had various guest panels, raffles and a cosplay contest, where fans got the chance to win sonic figures and more.
With word getting around, it goes without saying Sonic Revolution will continue to grow! We’ll return for more of that Sonic experience and bring you more content with the return of Sonic Revolution come 2020! If you’re a Sonic The Hedgehog, this is the place to be at!
Photo gallery from Sonic Revolution 2019 held at The Sage Resturant and lounge in Whitter, California.
Following the release of these shoes, Nice Kicks, a popular shoe store in Downtown Los Angeles, held a HUGE SEGA party with VERY special guests.
an authentic Archie Sonic the Hedgehog comic #24
Sonic Mania Sega Gen. s Cartridge w/ metal gold ring
Inside NICK KICKS during the event
Inside NICK KICKS during the event
Inside NICK KICKS during the event (Eggman section)
SONIC RS-0 by digital artist, Jeff Cole
Inside NICEKICKS (before event began)
Promo Hatsune Miku banner
Store’s game station
Sega Genesis Flashback HD 2017 Console
Sega Genesis original poster
My assistant, Vincent Reyes
Fans waiting to see CRUSH 40
SEGA staff setting up event/stage
Sonic the Hedgehog board game from Brazil
Fan hold Jeff Cole’s artwork that he won
Sonic The Hedgehog backdrop
Myself & the fastest thing alive, Sonic!
Special guests included, game designer/game director, S & Japanese-American rock band, Crush 40 (Jun Senoue & Johnny Gioeli)! For the first time, in a long time, Crush 40 performed LIVE in Los Angeles. Performing Sonic classics such as, Open your Heart, Live and Learn, I am…All of Me, and their new song, Green Light Ride for the new sonic game, Sonic Racing! Watch the entire concert provided by yours truly, The Kitsune Network:
check out our photos from the concert:
Johnny Gioeli (Crush 40 Vocals)
Jun Senoue (Crush 40 guitarist)
Crush 40 performing “Sonic Boom” cover
Jun Senoue (Crush 40 guitarist) with SONIC guitar
Crush 40 performing “Live & Learn”
Me filming the entire concert for you guys.
GOOD NIGHT, LOS ANGELES!
Watching Crush 40 and meeting band members, Johnny and Jun was surreal. As a child I remember playing Sonic Adventure XD and Sonic Adventure 2: Battle, I remember not skipping title screen just to hear Crush 40’s theme. I would like to Thank you Crush 40, for making my childhood great with their catchy rockin songs and Thank you Mr.Iizuka, for making the greatest Sonic game ever; the Adventure series.
(Left to Right) Mr.Iizuka Takashi; Johnny Gioeli; Krystal & Jun Senoue