“Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane is making his directorial feature debut on an R-rated comedy called Ted about a man and his talking teddy bear.
The 36-year-old writer, producer, actor, singer, etc. wrote the script with two of the show’s writers (Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild) for Universal. (Fox wasn’t interested, for once.) According to Deadline, he’s been given a $65 million budget to combine live-action actors and a CGI bear to be voiced by MacFarlane. I hope it’s named Rupert.
MacFarlane lends his voice to several characters on “Family Guy” and the other animated Fox sitcom he created, “American Dad.” In addition, he oversees production on the spin-off sitcom “The Cleveland Show” and produced a couple of direct-to-DVD Star Wars spoofs filled with his cartoon characters. His only ventures into movies thus far have been a voice in Hellboy II and a small part in the awful Dwayne Johnson comedy Tooth Fairy.
Hopefully MacFarlane is able to show something new with this new direction because frankly “Family Guy” has become stale by its eighth season. What was once a smart, influential series of hilarious randomness has unfortunately declined into a formulaic rendering of its former self. While MacFarlane continues to hint at bringing the Griffins to the screen (probably when the show finally bows out), I’d much rather see another “South Park” feature, as that show has only gotten better over time.