Kermit and Miss Piggy Are Muppets Most Wanted
By: Lynn Barker
A couple of years ago The Muppets were reintroduced to a new generation through a new film. Though that movie's human leads Jason Segel and Amy Adams don't return for this new adventure, their Muppet buddy Walter is back as a solid member of the gang and, of course, Miss Piggy and Kermit are front and center.
Muppets Most Wanted takes the action overseas and the now very popular Muppets are on a European tour. Trouble starts, however, when very famous thief/burglar Constantine decides to make use of his uncanny resemblance to Kermit the Frog to do his dirty deeds. The Muppets are in danger and Kermit must escape from a Russian prison to foil Constantine and save Miss Piggy and his best buds.
Kidzworld went on the set of the film shooting on a train platform at L.A.’s famous Union Station to watch the Muppets board a train for their world tour. While there, various Muppet actors and human filmmakers paused to talk with us. Here comes Miss Piggy in all her stylish glory!
Kidzworld: We’re on the set of your sequel, The Muppets Most Wanted. What are you most excited for fans to be seeing?
- Piggy: Well, moi, naturally! I’m very excited to be giving the world more of moi. The last movie was so successful and that was largely, in part, due to moi so we are, of course, doing the sequel which will feature even more of moi, I’m happy to say. I actually get a solo in this movie that I do not have to sing with somebody else. The last one, I had to do a solo with Amy Adams. This one, I do not have to share the stage with anyone.
Kidzworld: Lots of romance in this movie?
- Piggy: Oh yeah! You betcha. If you want romance, this is the movie for you.
Kidzworld: We’ve heard that there is going to be a wedding this season that may involve a pig. Is that going to be with you?
- Piggy: Let’s see. How much do I want to say? I do have a beautiful while dress that has a veil and a very long train in this movie. I’m not going to say what it’s used for but I do get to wear it and you’ll get to see me in it.
Kidzworld: When we saw you in the last film, you were in Paris. We know The Muppets get to go to Europe in this one. Do we get to see any of your friends from Europe?
- Piggy: Any of my European friends in this movie? Yes, in fact, we do have a few of them. Let’s see, some that come to mind are Ricky Gervais. What does he play in this movie? I don’t know. He’s somewhere in the background. He did that show “Extras” which I saw and I thought he would be perfect to be an extra in MY movie!
Kidzworld: What kinds of fabulous fashions are you going to be wearing in this film, besides the white one? Do you have a favorite?
- Piggy: I’ve got so many outfits in this movie. I can’t even tell you how many. There are some scenes where I start in one costume and change into another costume by the end of the scene. Sometimes, in the same shot.
Kidzworld: You aren’t changing on camera, are you? (how scandalous)
- Piggy: Oh, I don’t know. I haven’t seen the movie yet.
Kidzworld: The scene we are watching shoot today, The Muppets are going on a train. Where are you going?
- Piggy: I don’t know. That way (she points down the train track). Every time the train moves, it seems to be going that way. This is where we’re getting on a train to go to Europe. I love Europe. It’s a wonderful country.
Kidzworld: You’re taking the train from Los Angeles to Europe? Is that possible?
- Piggy: Yes! Duh. How else would you go? I mean, really.
Kidzworld: Ricky Gervais, Ty Burrell, Tina Fey are in this movie. What are they like to work with?
- Piggy: They’re absolutely wonderful. Which ones are they again?
Kidzworld: Human co-stars.
- Piggy: Oh yes. They truly are very funny, very talented and as long as they don’t get between moi and the camera, they are also very healthy, yes.
Kidzworld: Amy Adams and Jason Segal aren’t in this film. Are their characters going to be addressed?
- Piggy: I don’t know. If you want to write them a post card and address it to them, you may. I really don’t see the point of it myself. This is a Muppet movie you know. Nobody really cares about the humans.
Kidzworld: Piggy, the Muppets have become so successful again since the last movie. Has your relationship with Kermie changed?
- Piggy: No. We’ve always been steadfast loves. In the movies, we may sometimes have our squabbles and it may be difficult but in real life, we are always truly, madly and deeply in love with one another.
Kidzworld: We know that there is a Kermit impersonator in this movie. If Piggy loves Kermit so much, would she be able to tell the difference?
- Piggy: A Kermit impersonator? Where did you hear such a foolish thing? There can only be one Kermit. I have no idea what you’re talking about but I will say that, some days, Kermit seemed more like himself than others. Some days he would come along and be the very soft-spoken, gentle and handsome frog that I’ve always known. Then, some days he would come to work and just be barking out orders and in a foul mood and not paying any attention to me. I wonder what that was?
Kidzworld: Piggy, you look great. What is your fitness regime and what kind of diet do you do?
- Piggy: (She laughs). Oh, I don’t do any of that myself. I have people who do that for me. If you are a celebrity in Hollywood, you have people who do things for you like work out for you. I only hire the best.
Kidzworld: Any new Muppets in the film?
- Piggy: Well, I still consider Walter new. He keeps messing up my coffee order. Until he gets that right, we’re going to keep calling him ‘the new guy’. Really, who needs anybody new when you have moi?
Kidzworld: The first film won an Oscar for best song and it wasn’t your solo and I’m convinced it was because Amy Adams sort of took that away from you. Is there any hostility there?
- Piggy: We’ll just see if she’s in the new movie, won’t we? We’ll just see if it was in somebody’s contract that she was not allowed back in the sequel to the successful first film that was so successful because of me.
Kidzworld: What is your solo in this film going to be about?
- Piggy: Well, it’s right before a very big event in my life where I’m wearing the white dress.
Kidzworld: (Noting a huge diamond sparkler on her finger) Is that a special ring on a special finger?
- Piggy: This? This I got out of a box of Crackerjacks. You want it?
- Kidzworld: Yeah
And here comes Kermit as Piggy exits.
Kidzworld: Hey, hi Kermit! Talk about the fact that we are on the set of the sequel.
- Kermit: Here we are at L.A.’s Union Station (train station). This is the second half of a scene we shot in England. It’s great to be doing kind of a sequel to the last film. We’ve done nine films over the years.
Kidzworld: What’s different about this Muppet film compared to the ones before.
- Kermit: There are many differences. If I may talk about my own role. I am returning as Kermit the Frog, a part that I was born to play (laughter). What’s cool about it this time is, by the end of the film, I am sort of an action hero. You will see me do things you haven’t seen me to before. But seriously, I’m a cross between James Bond and something Bruce Willis would do.
Kidzworld: Did you have to train for that?
- Kermit: Well, sort of. I had to train to be more serious when you are playing those action hero roles; like hanging from the bottom of helicopters and things like that.
Kidzworld: There is a character in this film called Constantine who looks just like you. Did you consider playing both parts?
- Kermit: We talked about it. I have to admit that I’m not great at doing the accent that Constantine has. He has a European/Russian sort of accent. He’s one of my cousins from the swamp.
Kidzworld: How is it working with Tina Fey? I hear she gets the hots for Kermit?
- Kermit: Yes. I don’t want to embarrass Tina. I love her and we had a great time together. But that is only on camera. She’s a married woman. Besides, Miss Piggy might read this and you never know what could happen. I can’t imagine anyone else playing the role of a Mistress of a (prison in Russia). As she put it, her character Nadia loves prison. She does a musical number that reminds me of The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Kidzworld: I hear it’s heating up between you and Piggy in this movie. She seems to be getting married. Is that true?
- Kermit: Well, there is a lot of heat whenever Miss Piggy and I are on screen. I don’t want to give the story away. It turns out there is a little bit of tomfoolery that happens in the movie, a little mistake (in the romance department).
Kidzworld: Did you have a favorite location for the movie?
- Kermit: Upper Heyford (in Oxfordshire, England). It was 10 below with the wind chill and we were outside all night and I am a semi-naked frog (laughter). It was like the polar plunge.
Kidzworld: Yikes! Do people bother you on the street “Hey! You’re Kermit the Frog!”?
- Kermit: They say “Hey, little short guy, get out of the way!” I’m often confused for a green fire hydrant. Have to be very careful. It’s great being an 18 to 24-inch tall celebrity. You can just slip through the crowds and people leave you alone.
Kidzworld: Can you talk about the musical numbers in the film and do you have a favorite?
- Kermit: We did a number called “The Big House” and that’s Tina Fey’s number I mentioned and she sings this song where she is welcoming me to prison and I’m supposed to act like I’m depressed about that but it was hard to do because it’s such a fun song. I think people will see a side of Tina they haven’t seen before. She’s really wonderful.
Kidzworld: Is Miss Piggy a diva on set?
- Kermit: We had a little trouble getting her out of her trailer this morning. It was raining. She thought she might melt or something.
Kidzworld: Can you talk about working with Walter again? (He was in the last Muppet movie).
- Kermit: I guess he’s not the center of attention but he joins the group. That’s what happens to Muppets who make a debut. They either stick around or we stick ‘um in a drawer. Walter was a big hit and everybody loved him.
Kidzworld: Aren’t those Muppets fans over there on set (by the tracks at L.A.’s Union Station)?
- Kermit: Here on this train platform I see people on the other side of the tracks snapping pictures like crazy. There is no telling what you’ll see. It’s great to meet our fans. We don’t often get a chance. We love our fans.
Kidzworld: You’ve been with the Muppet family for many years. How do you all stay connected and stay friends?
- Kermit: We try to see each other when we’re not working. Some of us go our separate ways. I always go back to the swamp. Piggy goes to Rodeo Drive for a holiday. It’s interesting. It’s a rambunctious bunch. The interstate permits alone to carry livestock (all the animal Muppets). It’s like a quarantine thing. So hard to coordinate.
Be sure to see Muppets Most Wanted starting March 21st!