Our good friends at ToughPigs have delivered some promising news from the front of the new Muppet movie: The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that Disney requested and received a table read of the script for The Greatest Muppet Movie Ever Made with director James Bobin, actor/writer Jason Segel, and producers with the "Brain Trust" from uber-successful filmmakers and storytellers, Pixar.
The article reports that the players for both sides were excited at the opportunity to work together. "There are a lot of Muppet fans up there at Pixar. Both sides were excited and curious," one Disney insider said. "I wouldn't read too much into it. Pixar is acting more as a friend of the court." This is immensely exciting considering Pixar's 11-0 track record of great films. Certainly having their touch on the new Muppet movie will only help the project and most likely make it more of a character-driven piece.
Batting for the Muppets side in the table read, according to the article, were director James Bobin, writer and star Jason Segel, and producers David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman. For Pixar, huge names like John Lasseter (Toy Story, Cars), Brad Bird (The Incredibles, Ratatoullie), Andrew Stanton (Wall-E), Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3), Bob Peterson (Finding Nemo, Up), and president Ed Catmull were at the table read to provide insight and feedback and perhaps add in a few of their magic touches as well.
While it's still unclear how much input the Pixarians had in the script, it's extremely likely that they've helped it become more of a character-driven, heart-warming script just like their films. After seeing Toy Story 3, I spoke to a Muppet person who was very hopeful that Disney would indeed put the script through Pixar, an idea which I hoped for as well, and it looks like the Mouse House headed the call.
This is a perfect sign that Disney is heading in the right direction with this film and I for one cannot wait to see this film finally start shooting and become more than just a table read!
The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier