I applaud Seth MacFarlane for deciding to not make a Family Guy movie his first feature even though I’m sure 20th Century Fox would have leaped at recreating the success they had with The Simpsons Movie. However, a Family Guy movie is on the mind of the host of next year’s Oscars. Speaking to a group of UCLA students to kick off “The Oscar Experience College Search” (which looks for college kids interested in pursuing film careers, and will also let them be the ones to hand off the Oscars at the ceremony), McFarlane was asked about his plans for a Family Guy movie.
Hit the jump to check out what he had to say as well as his thoughts on previous Oscar hosts.
MacFarlane told the crowd that it’s just a matter of time before Family Guy hits the big screen, but “It’s hard to do that while you have the series going on at the same time,” EW reports. “I think that’s why it took The Simpsons 20 seasons to figure out how to do it.” He continued:
“We do know what the Family Guy movie will be. The Simpsons movie, I thought, was hilarious, but the one criticism I would have is that it’s a story they probably could’ve done on TV. There could’ve been an episode that had that plotline,” he said. “That’s the challenge with animation. You pretty much can do any story you want, so what is the reason for the movie? We finally hit on the answer to that question, and it will be something that would be impossible to do on TV.”
The challenge is budget. Mainstream animated film in the United States cost a lot of money, and so they’re universally rated PG-13 or lower (and the only PG-13 ones in recent memory are The Simpsons Movie and 9). I’d be shocked if MacFarlane didn’t want to go hard-R for his Family Guy film (I’d also be surprised if the movie wasn’t a musical since MacFarlane seems to have a penchant for the genre).
Moving on from Family Guy, MacFarlane spoke about previous Oscar hosts who were perceived as flops, but who he saw as “noble failures”. Speaking about David Letterman‘s panned hosting gig in 1995, MacFarlane said:
“Letterman was not well received when he hosted the Oscars,” he went on. “But I loved it. I remember watching that and thinking, ‘He’s doing something fresh,’ which is always a good thing. That’s going to be the challenge. And if I can do it without torpedoing my career and getting drummed out of the business … then that would be good, too. All I can do is work my very best.”
We’ll see if his best is good enough when the 85th Academy Awards airs on February 24, 2013.