The theatrical motion-picture based on the classic Jim Henson series in the works since the early 2000’s, has made a huge step forward today. Variety reports that actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt has signed on to both star in and produce The Fraggle Rock Movie.
Gordon-Levitt made a name for himself as a child actor in family-targeted projects like Disney’s Angels in the Outfield and NBC’s 3rd Rock From The Sun before reemerging as a respected adult actor in films like 50/50, (500) Days of Summer, Inception and Don Jon.
Montecito Pictures who was originally working on the adaptation, abandoned the project before it was picked up by New Regency. The Fraggle Rock movie is said to return to the world of the Fraggles, a race of upbeat and playful gnome-like muppets who lived in a cave-dwelling society, feeding on radishes and the radish-stick buildings of the Doozers (an even smaller muppet race constantly pestered by the Fraggles), hiding from massive golem-ish Gorgs and receiving wisdom from a almost-buddhist sentient pile of garbage they lovingly refer to as “The Trash Heap”. It was one of the more loosely written, creative Henson projects from the 80’s (and that’s saying something). It was a massive hit spanning several seasons, a Saturday Morning cartoon spin-off, tons of merchandise and some pretty nifty McDonalds happy meal toys.
As with the series, the movie promises to combine puppets from the Jim Henson Creature Shop with live actors.
JGL expressed a lot of enthusiasm for the series and other Jim Henson works from his childhood.
“The first screen personas I ever loved were Henson creations, first on ‘Sesame Street,’ and then on ‘Fraggle Rock,’” Gordon-Levitt said. “Jim Henson’s characters make you laugh and sing, but they’re also layered, surprising, and wise. From Oscar the Grouch, to Yoda, to the Fraggles. I’ve never stopped loving his work, even as a young frisky man, and on into adulthood. Collaborating with Lisa Henson makes me confident we can do something that Jim would have loved. I’m grateful and excited to be working with New Regency on this project.”
2011 saw a Jason Segel-led Muppets reboot that set the bar pretty high for projects like this, I’m sure JGL knows that we expect big things! There is no projected release date at this time but you’re welcome to treat/subject yourself to the classic Fraggle Rock intro theme below.
Good luck getting that out of your head when you’re trying to sleep tonight.