Thanks To SEGA & NETFLIX We Got To Take Part In The Press Junket For “SONIC PRIME” And Talk To Executive Producer, Logan Mcpherson & The Voice Of Sonic, Deven Mack About The Show, It’s Multiversal Approach & A Potential Season 2!
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] So it’s great to be able to talk to you guys & For people who maybe don’t know can go into your history with Sonic and some of the other characters who are appearing in this series?
[DEVEN MACK] For sure. Well, for me, it’s a very, very surreal thing because I grew up as a little kid, I didn’t actually own the games, but I was immediately drawn to the animated series the ‘Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog’, just the swagger, the confidence that Sonic had and with me being a really, really shy kid, I really gravitated towards that. And it was like, man, he’s so cool. I got to get like that, though. And then as I got older, Sonic games started appearing on other systems, not just the Sega one. So I was able to get ‘Sonic Adventure 2 battle’, which very immediately opened my eyes to like, oh, wow, this is why people have been talking about these games for so long. Okay, let’s go. So you had all these unique worlds, these really unique, memorable characters, and that sense of speed and everything. I just really gravitated towards that as a kid and then again as a team. So it’s neat to be a part of something that connects with people throughout these different generations. It’s a character that has endured, characters that have endured for so many reasons, and it’s really cool to get to be a part of.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] I imagine the day you got the call or email from Netflix and they were like, Devon, you are Sonic. That was quite a great day for you afterwards and to go to you, Logan. Were you a part of that process?
[LOGAN MCPHERSON] Yeah, absolutely. We partnered with Sega and Man of Action to develop a series and flesh out the concept. So we brought that to the table and went through a development process, working very closely with them and ultimately pitched Netflix and who was totally into the show and so on board. And then they brought their experience and creative chops to the table. So it became this amazing collaboration. And when it came time to cast the role this is such a big role, there’s so many aspects to it, and it’s such a crazy roller coaster journey that the character comes, that the character goes on. So, yes, when we came to casting, Deven stepped up to the plate and immediately blew everybody away. It was like, oh, my God. We found our Sonic. This guy is incredible. He wrapped his arms around, like, what the core of the voice feels like to be Sonic and brought his own fresh spin on it and energy to the role. And the journey that he goes on is the way that Devon has described that journey through the lens of the character, It’s just something we’re so proud of and excited to be a part of.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] Deven, regarding The Voice, were you inspired by any one particular person from the past who did the voice for the games or the shows or did you kind of just find your own thing for it? And how did you know the moment where it was like, this is Sonic to me? And what was that like for you to step into and deliver the Voice in the studio?
[DEVEN MACK] Well, the studio is actually my closet, where I am right now. But for me, it wasn’t really focusing squarely on any one particular individual. For me, it was just drawing from the entire history of all these different incredible performers throughout the year. Everybody brought something unique to the table, but at the core of it, you always find that sense of confidence, you find that swagger, that sense of humor, that heart of gold, the really deep care that he has for his friends, the special bond that he has with Tails as a mentor figure and everything like that. Everything about that influenced kind of what I wanted to do with the character. Again, drawing on that history, but at the same time seeing things where I’m like, you know what, I’m going to try to get my own little thing in here, put my own unique little spin dash on things and see if it’ll play. And again, it’s really, really cool the amount of freedom that I’ve had to be able to bring some of my own unique little quirks to it. And yeah, it’s just a really, really special experience.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] That sounds great! Is there any sort of warm up practice you have to do or do you find yourself able to slip in and out of the Sonic quite easily?
[DEVEN MACK] For me, because I’ve got so many character voices just like, living in my head, I’m always kind of jumping from job to job. It just kind of turns off and on like a light switch, like (SONIC VOICE!) come on, guys, let’s go!, And it’s just like that.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] Logan, I’d like to know if you have any personal history with Sonic and if you could sort of tell that story?
[LOGAN MCPHERSON] Yeah. Growing up as a kid, we had a Nintendo in the house that my brother hogged all the time. And when I saw Sega Genesis coming out, I was like, oh, my God, I need that. Sonic was such a cool character. Mario was slow. Sonic was fast and exciting and dynamic. So I started cutting lawns as a kid to save up enough money to buy my own Sega Genesis, and that’s how I got into it. Sonic, that seemed like such a cool, fun, exhilarating character. That was the beginning of my journey. So to come full circle and work on this series and be partnered with Sega and Netflix and Deven to bring this character to life in our own unique way and respect the lore and the legacy that exists, that 30 year history. But create an experience for the whole family, from kids, young and old, boys, girls, dad, moms, Legacy fans to new fans. It’s something we really tried very hard to do. It has those touch points for fans, and it feels authentic and genuine, but it creates a whole new experience. You don’t have to have played all the games and necessarily grown up with it. There is an access point for everybody, and there’s something in this series for everyone. We really tried to create that holistic experience, and so I hope we did it justice.
[DEVEN MACK] You’ll definitely see those moments to make you say, I know what that is, which is, again, you get rewarded for being a longtime fan, for sure.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] I’m sure they’ll all appreciate that… What a lot of people wanted me to ask was regarding the storyline this series went for with the multiverse aspect, which is quite the rage nowadays, what was it that made you quite enticed to go with that storyline and sort of flesh out the Sonic verse, if you will?
[LOGAN MCPHERSON] Yeah, so we’re calling it The Shatterverse!, so it’s our own unique version. But again, because the series is canon and the authentic representation of the mythology was so important, those characters in Greenhill needed to come to the table, as the mythology demands. And we knew we didn’t want to mess with that. We didn’t want to be rewriting any history. We wanted it to be authentic. There’s such amazing, iconic characters. But also we wanted to take that and use it as a springboard, as a jumping off point, to take the story into new, fun, wild, weird, unexpected directions. So the Shatterverse idea really made sense for that, to create these alternate realities that really push Sonic and versions of his friends on a journey that we couldn’t do if we just stuck to the core mythology. So it was a way for us to use it as a jumping off point and springboard us into a wild and crazy adventure that gives us a little more flexibility to go to different places.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] Was it was quite important for you to get it right, as you said before, for both the old fans and the new fans, especially with where the series goes and what it can include and such?
[LOGAN MCPHERSON] Absolutely. And working so closely with Sega and developing the mythology and how we were going to bring that to this story was so important, and we wanted to make sure we represented that accurately obviously. The Legacy fans are a Tough crowd to please. We had to make sure that that stuff was in place and it didn’t feel cheap or like an invitation. So it was really important for us for it to be authentic. And then once that’s in place, those touchstones are there, it’s familiar. Blow it up and take it into wild and insane, but also respect the DNA and the storytelling of that legacy and everything that has come before it. So even though they’re new situations in different realities, it still feels authentically Sonic. And that’s what we really try to do, is wrap our arms around the whole property in general and ensure that the DNA still feels like it’s intact and it’s not suddenly something different that seems like it’s off or it’s like an invitation. That was never the goal. No, this is core it’s legacy, and while we’re doing wild things with it, we’re still respecting the property as a whole. And to have Sega so closely involved in collaborating with us along the way, it’s just been so valuable in our ability to do that going forward.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] Thinking past season one, Are there any ideas for a season two? Have Sega opened up the conversation about where maybe plans could go for that? Such as bringing in characters who don’t appear in this season, but could do within the next?
[LOGAN MCPHERSON] No, No official plans in place at this point, but it’s something that we would absolutely love to do. And Sega wants to continue telling stories and bringing characters to the table and finding new ways to explore their personalities and adventures they can be on or situations we could thrust them into. So there’s definitely an appetite to continue to tell these types of stories and from Wild Brainside, we would obviously love to be a part of that.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] And to start wrapping things up, is there anything either of you have to say to the Sonic fans watching this who’re going into the series? Is there anything you want them to take away?
[LOGAN MCPHERSON] Well, I hope they enjoy it. I hope it feels authentic to them. And honestly, Sonic is such a beacon of hope and positivity, and he has this heart of gold and he’s always there for his friends and he thrust into a situation where it’s kind of his fault and he has to take responsibility for his actions and kind of clean up his mess. So there’s messages of hope and responsibility and empathy and compassion and Sonic really, he learns a lot about himself in this story and what his friends mean to him. And I think it’s a great message and that we should appreciate everybody around us and not take things for granted. It’s those messages that are layered in there that we hope people take away at the same time as having a super fun and exhilarating ride while they’re on the journey.
[TOM – THE HOLLYWOOD HANDLE] Awesome. Well I appreciate both of your guys’ time. Thanks so much. Congrats again on the show and hopefully we will cross paths once again to talk about Sonic crime in the near future!
‘SONIC PRIME’ Releases To Netflix From December 15th.