The backlash that the Sonic movie saw after the first trailer was immense. People were extremely unhappy with Sonic's design, so much so that the decision was made to move ahead on a redesign. In an interview with FXGuide, VFX supervisor Ged Wright talked about how long the redesign process took.
“...a lot of the work that the team had already done as far as the look of Sonic’s fur, should he have eyelashes and what they look like…how we should handle the eyes…all that kind of stuff was actually directly translatable over to the new design. I think the redesign took only seven or eight weeks, which is a record at MPC for the design of a 3D character.”
While the redesign may not have taken as long as many expected, there was still a lot of work to be done. Rather than having the higher-ups at Paramount give the order for a redesign, the movie's director actually visited the VFX team to deliver the word, and also thank the team for their hard work.
“Jeff (Fowler) was kind enough to come up to Vancouver along with people from Paramount and he gave a really lovely speech to the whole crew, and I could see that it meant a lot to them. That the person that’s making this film came, rather than sending an arbitrary edict from LA. Instead, he had come and was thanking them for their energy. Jeff was excited by the opportunity and expressed that to them. He also had time, to sit one-on-one with various artists. Jeff definitely took the time to recognize that people had invested a lot of their personal lives in this and that you need to say thank you.”
Thanks to Jonathan for the heads up!