There are plenty of films coming in the rest of the year that we’re excited about. “The Tree of Life,” obviously. “Hugo Cabret,” “Drive,” “The Skin I Live In,” “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” and many, many more. But this writer has to confess that he’s almost as excited about a somewhat less highbrow film: Disney’s long-in-the-works reawakening of “The Muppets.” And frankly, we hope you are too.
The idea of someone who doesn’t love Jim Henson‘s creations is almost anathema to us, but their films of late have been quick and cheap takes on the likes of “Treasure Island” and “The Wizard of Oz,” diluting the brand. Disney has given it a shake-up for the new project, bringing in “Flight of the Conchords” director James Bobin to helm (with Bret McKenzie from the New Zealand comedy band writing songs), and commissioning a script from “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” duo Nicholas Stoller and Jason Segel. The latter also takes the lead role of a man, who with his best friend, a Muppet named Walter, set out to save the legendary Muppet studio. Amy Adams, Rashida Jones and Chris Cooper top a star-packed cast with a starry list of cameos including Zach Galifianakis, Jack Black, Katy Perry, Ricky Gervais, Donald Glover, Eric Stonestreet, Billy Crystal, Alan Arkin and Dave Grohl.
Now, Ain’t It Cool has landed a picture of the first poster for the film, which sees some of our favorite creations striding purposefully towards camera. It’s not the best quality image, but it’s the first glimpse of a marketing campaign which will likely be inescapable in the coming months: a teaser trailer is expected to land next week in front of “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” — from our review of that film, we imagine it’ll be the sole highlight of your evening at the pictures. “The Muppets” (which seems to have reverted from its last title, “The Muppet Movie“) lands in theaters in a prime Thanksgiving slot, on November 23rd.