Is Ricky Gervais signed on for the 2013 sequel?
Work on The Muppets 2 is well underway, and don't worry, that name probably won't remain with the project come its release next year. Today, we've heard rumblings that casting negotiations for the Disney comedy sequel's lead are coming to a climax, with British comedy legend Ricky Gervais reportedly signed on to helm the cast. Gervais is famed for his co-writing of shows such as The Office and Extras with the slightly lesser-known talent Stephen Merchant, as well as starring in his own productions including (but by no means limited to) Derek, An Idiot Abroad, The Invention Of Lying, Ghost Town, Cemetry Junction and The Ricky Gervais Show in the past few years. The alleged news comes after previous lead Jason Segel confirmed that his protagonist Gary and Amy Adams' Mary would merely be referenced rather than feature in the sequel.
Ricky originally had a cameo as himself in The Muppets, but I'm sure the production team are glad that they cut this from the final edit, as we don't know yet whether Gervais will play a fictional character or himself here. Either way, he seems like a good replacement for Segel, and with any luck any worries we might have will be tossed away the moment that he takes to the stage just as they were with the previous lead. The Muppets 2 is set for release in cinemas everywhere in December 2013.