The Muppets is a valuable IP with instant name recognition and beloved characters. It’s also a property that Disney can’t seem to figure out what to do with. It looked like the property might be on track with the 2011 movie The Muppets, which grossed a respectable $165 million worldwide off a $45 million budget, but the 2014 sequel, Muppets Most Wanted sank like a stone. This led to a 2016 ABC series done in the style of The Office, but it was canceled after one season. So Disney is now going back to the drawing board and hoping it can relaunch The Muppets like Gonzo getting shot out of a cannon.
According to THR, Disney’s upcoming streaming service will have a new Muppets reboot. There are no details on the series, and the studio is currently searching for a writer that will offer a new take.
From a business perspective, such a reboot makes perfect sense, especially for a streaming service where Disney wants to offer content that fans can’t get anywhere else. If a Muppets series gets picked up, it could join TV shows based on Monsters, Inc., a reboot of High School Musical, and an adaptation of The Mighty Ducks. That’s not to mention a live-action TV series based on Star Wars.
There’s still no details yet on when the streaming service will launch (it’s rumored it will be available in fall 2019) or how much it will cost, but since Disney has so much content, not to mention what they’ll own with the Fox acquisition underway, their service could be a serious powerhouse.
As for The Muppets, hopefully they’ll get someone who knows what they’re doing with the property. The Muppets operates in a unique, distinctive space, and it can be difficult to seize upon what makes it work (2011’s The Muppets isn’t an awful movie, but a recent rewatch shows that the mixture isn’t quite right). Perhaps the third time is the charm for Kermit and the gang.