Following the success of Ted, in which he provided the voice of an animated teddy bear (and wrote and directed), Seth MacFarlane is now working on his live-action movie acting debut, and it's going to be a western. A Million Ways to Die in the West, which will be written by MacFarlane and his Ted co-writers, Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild, is being described as "in the vein of Blazing Saddles," which is a pretty tall order. It's normal to be very skeptical when you hear such a comparison, but I actually feel pretty (cautiously) optimistic about this. While it doesn't sound like it will be taking on race issues quite as directly as Blazing Saddles, it will be about how hard life was in the Old West compared to how it is today. Probably lots of jokes about nonchalantly shooting people, outhouses, and horses as both transportation and travel companions. Personally, I tend to like how MacFarlane takes the most mundane things and turns them into entire bits, so I will be very interested in seeing this thing, which is scheduled to start shooting next summer. But I'm not crowning him an heir-apparent to Mel Brooks or anything.
However, worth mentioning: Carl Reiner, a Mel Brooks guy, happens to like MacFarlane's style, as he wrote in the paper version of Entertainment Weekly's Entertainers of the Year issue.
Photo credit: EW
Seth MacFarlane to Direct and Star in His First Western [Splitsider]
Very groovy news coming through the entertainment pipeline this morning as we find out who will host the Oscars: Seth MacFarlane! The Family Guy and American Dad creator, who just opened up Saturday Night Live's new season with a bang, has been chosen to host the next Academy Awards telecast early next year. Hopefully, he will show up to rehearsal this time! (video link)
And speaking of Saturday Night Live, they have announced their October lineup of hosts and musical guests: This Saturday, October 6 will be Daniel Craig with musical guest Muse, October 13 will be Christina Applegate -- coming back for her second time as host -- with musical guest Passion Pit, and October 20 will welcome Bruno Mars, who will do double duty as host and musical guest. (That would have been such a great Digital Short, so can Andy Samberg and Co. please come back to do just one? If anyone knows the correct person to bribe, please let me know.)
Seth MacFarlane's Big News [Oscars on YouTube]
Saturday Night Live's Backstage Blog
Last night, NBC's Saturday Night Live returned early to get a head start on the presidential election season. And not only did it spend considerable time on the topic, it introduced us to three new cast members and shiny new opening credits! Our host for the 38th season premiere was Seth MacFarlane, creator of Family Guy and director of Ted, with musical guest Frank Ocean. Here is how I'm approaching this recap, ladies and gents: I like this show, and I laughed a lot at stuff that was on it last night. And now, I'm going to tell you about what made me laugh the most, and which sketches I could have replaced with five minutes of brushing my teeth. But here is my recap in a nutshell: this was a good one! And it started with a former Barack Obama impersonator passing the baton to a new one.
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Riding on the success of his first feature film/sleeper hit Ted
, Seth MacFarlane will take the stage as the host of Saturday Night Live
's season premiere on September 15. He will be accompanied by musical guest Frank Ocean. I think Seth MacFarlane is a delight, and in the midst of this insane political season, I have a good feeling that he will be right at home with the cast. If he doesn't sing, then I will consider that a ripoff. Also announced are the next two hosts: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, with musical guest Mumford & Sons, and Daniel Craig, with musical guest Muse. That will bring us into October, at which point we will need funny business more than ever as we enter the home stretch before the election. (via Deadline