The show produced three “Star Wars” homages (2007’s “Blue Harvest,” 2009’s “Something, Something, Something Dark Side” and 2010’s “It’s a Trap!”) several years ago. But that was back before Disney acquired Lucasfilm and jumpstarted the franchise.
“The new regime is a little more difficult to deal with,” executive producer Alec Sulkin said. “Before we were just dealing with Lucasfilm. Seth [MacFarlane] had a good relationship with them. It’s not that Seth has a bad relationship with Disney, but they’re a bit more rigid.”
Executive producer Rich Appel said it was understandable, as “they’re a little more careful now that they’re rolling out new movies.”
Meanwhile, David Tennant, Kyle Chandler, Jacob Tremblay and the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Flea are among the guest stars coming to “Family Guy” next season.
Producers and stars from the animated hit shared spoilers Saturday at San Diego Comic-Con. Among the highlights: Tennant shows up as Doctor Who in a parody segment, while Chandler plays the coach of the James Woods High School baseball team (where Chris becomes an all-star player).
Also appearing: the New England Patriots’ Rob Gronkowski moves in next door to the Griffins – along with his dad and brothers. Peter loves it – until he realizes Gronk is “more Peter Griffin than he is.”
Also from the world of sports, Golden State Warriors superstar Steph Curry makes an appearance as himself.
As for Flea, Peter Griffin admonishes him for his shirtless lifestyle: “Put on a shirt, you’re 50 years old!” (The rock star wore a shirt while recording his segment, the producers added.)
Someone you won’t hear on the show: Leonardo DiCaprio, who was offered a role but was “too busy.” Said Appel: “Top that, ‘Simpsons’ – that’s a pretty big star who turned us down!”
In one special episode, three high school English books – “The Great Gatsby,” “Huckleberry Finn” and “Of Mice and Men” – are reinterpreted through “Family Guy” characters.
“So if you wait until the fall, you won’t have to read those books in high school!” quipped executive producer Rich Appel.
A documentary-themed episode will take a “look behind the scenes,” and show how Peter Griffin “in real life” is a “megamaniacal jackass.” Said Appel: “We’ll see what happens when he’s replaced by David Spade.”
In other episodes, Peter becomes an Uber driver; Quagmire becomes aware of Tinder; and Peter becomes Quagmire’s pimp.
And in his final performance before passing away, Frank Sinatra Jr. is back. Appel noted that over the years, several stars have died with “Family Guy” as their final credit, including Dennis Farina and Robert Loggia.
“So if you’re called and asked to be a guest on ‘Family Guy,’ be careful,” Appel said. Added star Alex Borstein: “And get your will ready!”
Will there be a much-anticipated “Family Guy” movie? Sulkin predicted one would finally materialize “within the next five years.”
Here’s a first look at Season 14: