As the series finale of 30 Rock looms closer, creator/star Tina Fey is lining up a pretty swell gig for her next project. Heat Vision reports that Fey is in late-stage negotiations to star as the female lead in the upcoming sequel to The Muppets. This is welcome news, as Fey should make for a nice foil opposite male lead Ricky Gervais. The two previously worked together in Gervais’ 2009 film The Invention of Lying, though one assumes their rapport will be more family-friendly while they’re flanked by The Muppets.
Ty Burrell is set to star as the film’s villain, a lazy Interpol inspector, and Fey will apparently be playing a Russian gulag prison guard in the Europe-set follow-up. Given all this prison and law-breaking talk, it sure sounds like our Muppet friends may find themselves behind bars at some point in the film. Production is set to begin later this month in London with returning director James Bobin, who also co-wrote the script alongside The Muppets scribe Nicholas Stoller. Fey will next be seen hosting the Golden Globes with Amy Poehler this coming Sunday, January 13th.
Well here’s something unexpected. Jason Segel long ago revealed that he wouldn’t be returning for the sequel to 2011’s The Muppets, so it was assumed that Disney would be casting someone else to be the film’s “human lead” opposite the titular Muppets. Ty Burrell was recently cast as the Europe-set film’s antagonist, a lazy Interpol inspector, but Heat Vision now reports that funnyman Ricky Gervais has been cast as the human lead in The Muppets 2.
Details on the role are being kept under wraps, but I can’t imagine it having much similarity to the character played by Segel; Gervais isn’t exactly known for being the sweet, sentimental type. Nicholas Stoller co-wrote the script with James Bobin, who returns to direct. Production is set to begin in January in London, so expect a slew of casting/cameo news in the coming months. The untitled sequel to The Muppets is set for release on December 20, 2013.
Casting is underway on the sequel to Disney’s The Muppets, and Modern Family star Ty Burrell is the first actor to officially sign on to the project. We previously heard that Christoph Waltz was in talks to play an Interpol agent in the Europe-set follow-up, but the actor’s schedule forced him to drop out of the running. Heat Vision reports that Burrell will now take over the role, with The Muppets director James Bobin returning to direct from a script he co-wrote with Nicholas Stoller.
Plot details are under wraps, but we know that the pic is a caper and production is set to begin early next year in London. In addition to Burrell’s Interpol agent, the story also involves a Russian Femme Fatale. We should hear more casting news soon as the production’s start date looms closer. The untitled Muppets sequel is set for release on December 20, 2013.
One of my favorite films of last year was director James Bobin‘s The Muppets. Not only was the film a huge commercial hit grossing almost $160 million worldwide, The Muppets averaged an amazing 96% on Rotten Tomatoes and also won the Academy Award for Best Original Song (Bret McKenzie‘s “Man or Muppet”). While it might have been a while before Disney decided to release a further Muppets movie, the new film’s success led the studio to greenlight the sequel quickly and it currently has a December 20, 2013 release date (via IMDb). As we’ve previously reported:
With the release date almost a year away, I figured filming must be starting soon. I was right. The other night I attended a Lionsgate/Summit holiday party where I ran into Muppet producer Todd Lieberman (he produced The Muppets with David Hoberman) and he gave me an update on the sequel. Hit the jump for more.
It’s been a while since we’ve had some Muppets news, but it now appears that we’ve learned who may be playing the new film’s villain. We know that The Muppets director James Bobin has been working on the script for the sequel with Muppets co-writer Nicholas Stoller, and now Variety’s Marc Graser reports via Twitter that Oscar winner Christoph Waltz is set to play an Interpol agent in the film. Stoller previously revealed that the film will be a caper, and Graser adds that the story will find the Muppets “running around in Europe.”
It’s a minor bit of news with few details, but Bobin, Stoller, and Jason Segel knocked last year’s redo out of the park so I’m eager to see where they take the characters in the sequel. Segel won’t have a hand in the script this time around, but it’s possible that he’ll make a cameo in the follow-up. Hopefully we hear more Muppets 2 news soon.
Director James Bobin is now onboard to direct the spy film Agent Zigzag. The Muppets director will helm the adaptation of the Ben McIntyre novel for New Line and Playtone Pictures, with Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman producing. The story centers on a professional criminal who became a double agent during World War II. “He won the trust of German intelligence services even as he reported back to the spymasters of MI5.” Rowan Joffe (Brighton Rock) was hired to write the script early last year for Mike Newell (Prince of Persia) to direct, but it appears Newell is no longer with the project.
Agent Zigzag is a bit of a change of pace for Bobin, as last year’s The Muppets was his feature directorial debut following stints on comedy series like Da Alie G Show and The Flight of the Conchords, but the novel apparently includes farcical elements. Hit the jump for more, including a synopsis of the novel.
Zach Galifianakis and director James Bobin (The Muppets) are a match made in heaven, to the degree that I had to check IMDB to see if Galifianakis ever hopped over from his HBO show Bored to Death for a guest spot on Bobin’s HBO show, Flight of the Conchords. Nope. But the pair may make up for the lost opportunity on Paramount’s feature adaptation of A Confederacy of Dunces. Vulture hears Galifianakis is attached to star as Ignatius Reilly and Bobin is in talks to direct. Scott Rudin (Moneyball) will produce, and Phil Johnston (Cedar Rapids) is reportedly working on the screenplay.
That’s quite a lineup, but Confederacy of Dunces has a long history of trying and repeatedly failing to become a movie. Harold Ramis set up the first attempt in 1982, but was derailed when his Ignatius, John Belushi, died. The role subsequently passed from John Candy to Chris Farley to John Goodman over the years, but never stuck. The most recent iteration was led by Will Ferrell and director David Gordon Green, but fell by the wayside at Paramount. When asked what happened to it, Ferrell could only respond, “It’s a mystery. For some reason that’s a very scary project for people to take on.” Hit the jump for a synopsis of John Kennedy Toole‘s seemingly unadaptable novel.
There have been a number of generations now who’ve grown up under the sway of Jim Henson’s Muppets. Since their creation, it’s become virtually impossible for a non-Amish child to have missed seeing Kermit the Frog and company through their movies, toys, and Sesame Street. And for the Muppets big return to cinema in 2011’s The Muppets, they’ve pitched the film to play to everyone who’s ever loved these characters. It’s a smart movie that mines nostalgia, but never does so in stupid or cloying ways. The Muppets co-star with Jason Segel (who co-wrote the film with Nicholas Stoller), Amy Adams, Chris Cooper and Rashida Jones in a tale of getting the old group back together again to save the Muppet theater from an evil oil tycoon (Cooper). Our review of the Blu-ray of The Muppets follows after the jump.
Pre-production is moving forward on a sequel to The Muppets (cue Kermit’s “Yaaaay!”), but Jason Segel won’t be attached as a writer this time around. According to Vulture, director James Bobin and original co-write Nicholas Stoller will handle the script for the sequel. However, Segel won’t have time to work on the screenplay due to his commitments to How I Met Your Mother, his burgeoning film career, and doing publicity for the upcoming comedies The Five-Year Engagement and This Is Forty. It’s a bit of a bummer since he and Stoller were so gung-ho on getting the Muppets back to the big screen, but there’s still a chance he could star in the sequel if the script has a place for him.
One of the great things about The Muppets is that Segel didn’t make the movie all about his character. Gary’s got a character arc, but the film really belongs to Walter and Kermit. While I have nothing against Segel, I can see a Muppets sequel without Gary. Now on the other hand, if Bret McKenzie doesn’t come back to do the music, then I’ll be concerned.
The Muppets returned to theaters this year in a big way with director James Bobin’s aptly named The Muppets. While the film could have easily become a heavy-handed and groan-worthy kids movie, Bobin and Co. delivered a sweet, funny, and ultimately touching flick that is just as effective for 7-year-olds as it is for cold, cynical cinephiles. When the Oscar hosting gig was once again up for grabs earlier this year, a campaign to have our lovely Muppets take up the duties gained some significant traction. While producers ultimately went with Billy Crystal, the whole idea got us thinking: what awards could the film actually win? Hit the jump for our take on The Muppets’ chances in this coming awards season.
The Muppets has been a big hit with critics and while it couldn’t beat out Twilight at the box office over Thanksgiving weekend, Kermit and the gang are expected to rise to #1 this weekend when there will be no new wide releases. But when you go to see the movie (if you haven’t seen it already), you should know you’re not watching the original ending. Hit the jump to find out how the movie originally wrapped up along with details on some other deleted scenes. Obviously, there will be spoilers.
by Jason Barr Posted: November 26th, 2011 at 1:15 pm
I did it, folks. I came, saw, and survived yet another Black Friday. This year’s destination of choice was my local Best Buy and I sat outside in moderately chilly temperatures for around six hours for one lonely purpose: to buy things for cheaper than what they were the day before. That’s right, I rocked Best Buy to the tune of two seasons of television on DVD for a combined $15. Now, I know some of you reading this may be thinking, “Wait, Jason waited outside for six hours so that he could buy two seasons of TV on DVD?”. My answer: a resounding “Yes!”. It’s the small things, people. The small things.
But enough of my Black Friday exploits. In this week’s “Top 5″ installment you’ll find interviews for this weekend’s openers The Muppets and Hugo, new images and plot details from The Dark Knight Rises, new images from Ridley Scott’s Prometheus, and Gary Oldman and Colin Firth addressing Akira and Oldboy remake rumors. Hit the jump for a brief recap and link to each.
With The Muppets now playing, all week I’ve been posting exclusive video interviews with the cast. The past few days I posted my conversations with Amy Adams, Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy, Jason Segel and Walter (the newest Muppet) and today I’ve got director James Bobin. But before getting to the interview, as I’ve said all week, I absolutely loved The Muppets. It’s one of my favorite films of the year and it not only made me laugh, it also made me cry. If you were nervous about the movie…don’t be. It’s a huge home run.
During the interview, Bobin talked about the positive reviews, which lesser known Muppets had to be in the movie, are there any Easter eggs to watch for, deleted scenes, and how the cameos never overtake the movie. Hit the jump to watch.
We all know the Muppets. They may not be as ubiquitous and popular as they once were, but we know them and we love them because they’re delightful characters who appeal to kids and adults alike with their mixture of slapstick, strangeness, satire, and singing. The Muppets‘ director James Bobin and co-writers Nicholas Stoller and Jason Segel (the latter of whom also co-stars) never forgot what makes Jim Henson‘s creations so special and this deep respect creates a movie that will introduce Kermit, Miss Piggy, Gonzo, and the whole gang to a new generation, and make the older generation fall in love with the Muppets all over again.
A new trailer for The Muppets has gone online. The marketing campaign for the film has been a bit offbeat, as the first three trailers released for the film were parodies. First we got a romantic comedy, then The Hangover Part II, and the third trailer took on Green Lantern. These culminated in an actual theatrical trailer being released, but today it looks like we’re back to parodies as this new trailer evokes David Fincher’s adaptation of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Personally, this is probably my favorite parody they’ve done so far. It’s fantastically meta, really funny, and it also gives us a good look at a number of scenes from the movie in quick-cut form a la the Dragon Tattoo trailer. We see quite a bit of Chris Cooper, as well as a hint of some of the many, many cameos (Neil Patrick Harris, Sarah Silverman, etc.). Disney is calling it The Pig With the Froggy Tattoo.
Hit the jump to watch the trailer for yourself. The film stars Jason Segel, Amy Adams, and Chris Cooper. The Muppets opens November 23rd.