×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Melissa McCarthy to Star in Puppet Comedy ‘Happytime Murders’

Melissa McCarthy has come on board STX’s noir comedy “The Happytime Murders.”

The comedy, directed by Brian Henson, is set in the underbelly of Los Angeles where puppets and humans coexist. Two clashing detectives, one human and one puppet, are forced to work together to try and solve the mystery of who is brutally murdering the former cast of “The Happytime Gang,” a beloved classic puppet show.

“When a really good script combines puppet strippers, Los Angeles’ underbelly, and comedy, it’s like my fever dream has finally come true,” McCarthy said in a press release.

The film is set to begin production this August and will be produced by The Jim Henson Company’s Henson Alternative banner, On the Day Productions, and STXfilms. Producers are Brian Henson, Jeffrey Hayes, McCarthy, and Ben Falcone. Lisa Henson and John W. Hyde will executive produce.

The story is by Todd Berger & Dee Robertson; while the screenplay is written by Berger with revisions by Erich & Jon Hoeber, and further revisions by McCarthy. The Henson Company has been attempting to develop “The Happytime Murders” since 2008, aiming to mix human characters and puppets in the Henson style of irreverence and parody. Jamie Foxx most recently circled the leading role.

STX Films Chairman Adam Fogelson said, “Melissa McCarthy is the reigning queen of comedy and we believe she will make ‘The Happytime Murders’ the kind of hysterical, edgy, viral event that audiences today crave. This is the kind of script and material that was made for Melissa’s smart and boundary-pushing sensibilities. Having worked with her years ago on ‘Bridesmaids’ and ‘Identity Thief,’ I could not be more delighted or excited to be working with her again.”

McCarthy will next by seen in “Life of the Party,” which was written by McCarthy and spouse Falcone, and directed by Falcone; and Marielle Heller’s “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”

McCarthy’s other starring roles include “Spy,” “Ghostbusters,” “St. Vincent,” “Tammy,” “The Heat,” and “The Boss.”

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Jamie Bell Without Remorse

    Jamie Bell Joins Michael B. Jordan in 'Without Remorse' Adaptation (EXCLUSIVE)

    Jamie Bell is in final negotiations to join Michael B. Jordan in Paramount’s adaptation of the Tom Clancy novel “Without Remorse.” Stefano Sollima, who most recently helmed “Sicario: Day of the Soldado,” is directing from a script by “Sicaro” screenwriter Taylor Sheridan. As previously announced, Jordan is starring as operations officer John Clark, also known [...]

  • Elizabeth McGovern, Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter,

    'Downton Abbey' Movie Sequel? Producers Tease That They Have 'Some Ideas'

    “Downton Abbey” holds the record as the most-nominated international show at the Emmy Awards with 69 nominations and 15 wins — and now, it stands a chance to nab an Oscar. More than three years after the beloved series signed off the air following six critically-acclaimed seasons, “Downton Abbey” is making its big-screen debut. “It [...]

  • Todd Phillips Joaquin Phoenix Joker Movie

    What's Woker Than 'Joker'? Film Critics Made Everything Political at Fall Festivals

    “Is it just me, or is it getting crazier out there?” asks Joaquin Phoenix, playing a deranged incel version of the DC supervillain in “Joker,” the unconventional comic book movie that’s sucked up much of the air from the fall festival circuit. Like an aggro caricature of the “involuntary celibates” who troll message boards online, [...]

  • Running Against the Wind

    Young Africans' Dreams Are Focus of Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda Oscar Picks

    Films about young Africans trying to fulfill their dreams in the face of war, poverty, tradition and other forms of adversity have been submitted for Oscar consideration by three East African nations. The selections by Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda to compete in the international feature film category reflect the relative youth of filmmaking in the [...]

  • Bob Bakish Viacom CEO

    ViacomCBS Leaders Talk NFL Negotiations, Streaming Wars and Merger Focus

    Viacom and CBS aim to prosper in the streaming arena by covering both ends of the marketplace, blending Viacom’s focus on ad-supported platforms with CBS’ strong head start on subscribers for CBS All Access and Showtime. ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish and incoming ViacomCBS chief financial officer Christina Spade outlined the combined company’s vision for how [...]

  • Steven Poster ICG National President

    DP Steven Poster to Receive SOC Lifetime Achievement Award

    Stephen Poster, cinematographer on such classics as “Donnie Darko” and Madonna’s “Like a Prayer,” will receive the Lifetime Achievement Distinguished Service Award from the Society of Camera Operators at a ceremony on Jan. 18, 2020. SOC grants the award to an Individual who has served the community at large and/or the Society through outstanding service [...]

  • RUTH HANDLER Barbie doll creator Ruth

    'Dream Doll' Biopic on Barbie Doll Inventor in Development (EXCLUSIVE)

    “Dream Doll,” a biopic based on Barbie Doll inventor Ruth Handler, is in development with Bron Studios, Rita Wilson and Rare Bird Films, Variety has learned exclusively. The film will chronicle the life of Handler as she founded Mattel in 1945 and created the now-iconic Barbie doll, named after her daughter Barbara, in 1959. Handler [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content