DID YOU READ

Miss Piggy shares her thoughts on “The Muppets,” leading men, and her Oscar snub

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It certainly is a good time to be a Muppet — or a Muppets fan, for that matter.

The Muppets” took home an Oscar for “Best Song” at last month’s Academy Awards, and now Kermit and the gang’s latest adventure hits DVD and Blu-Ray this week. On top of all that, it’s starting to seem like Miss Piggy, Fozzie the Bear, or the green guy himself are everywhere you look these days, with enough appearances on television, radio, and online media outlets to make it feel like it’s the Muppets’ world right now… and we’re just living in it.

IFC managed to snag a few minutes with one of the stars of “The Muppets,” Miss Piggy, whose celebrated career has made her one of Hollywood’s true icons of cinema and television. In our brief interview, she offered up some thoughts on her return to the screen in “The Muppets,” her advice for up-and-coming actors, and her desire to go solo in the next Muppet movie.

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IFC: Miss Piggy, I don’t normally do this, but let me start by saying that I’m honored to be talking with you right now…

MISS PIGGY: Of course. It is the greatest honor of your career… of your lifetime.

IFC: It is indeed. And congratulations on the Oscar the film received last month. That must have been very exciting for you.

MISS PIGGY: Thank you. Thank you. It would have made me a tad bit happier if it was the song that I sang from the movie.

IFC: Yes, that was a little disappointing. In fact, there were a lot of people saying you were snubbed in this year’s awards…

MISS PIGGY: Yes, well it’s not the first time. I’m snubbed every single year. I don’t care if I haven’t made a movie in 12 years, I still take offense to it.

IFC: Well, you did get to work with a great cast in “The Muppets,” especially the up-and-coming actors like Jason Segel and Amy Adams. When it comes to working with actors like that, who don’t have nearly as much experience in the industry as you do, what advice do you give them? After all, you’re a veteran performer compared to them…

MISS PIGGY: Well, yes… You’re not trying to say that I’m old, are you?

IFC: Not at all. I would never say that.

MISS PIGGY: Okay, good. Don’t even think it, either.

But it’s true, moi is very much an established icon in Holywood, and the tips that I would give up and comers like Amy Adams are very simple, straightforward things.

Always find your light, but never mine [and] always make sure the camera can see you, but never come between the camera and moi. This is very helpful for young actors starting out in the business, and it keeps them healthy, too — healthy and out of the hospital.

IFC: I read in an interview that you were holding on to the Oscar for safekeeping. Is that true?

MISS PIGGY: Um, is somebody looking for it? . . . You know, I don’t actually have it on my mantle at the moment. I sent it out to get engraved.

IFC: Okay… well, let’s talk about “The Muppets” a little more. Do you know anything about the deleted scenes that are included on the disc? Did you have any memorable scenes that didn’t make it into the movie for some terrible reason?

MISS PIGGY: There were many fabulous scenes that moi was in that unfortunately did not make the final cut. Next movie, I get final cut. I’m just saying that now.

IFC: Noted.

MISS PIGGY: I don’t know if any of these scenes made it onto the DVD as bonus features, but yes, there were some fabulous scenes. There was quite a bit taken out of the scene where Kermit and moi were strolling. There was the whole flashback sequence. [Flashbacks] are a very new filmic device where you go into somebody’s head and you relive their memories. It’s very interesting. I don’t think anybody has done it before, and in fact we didn’t do it in the movie because it got cut.

IFC: You’ve shared the stage with so many famous leading men. If Kermit wasn’t available, is there another actor out there who you’d like to do a few films with?

MISS PIGGY: Well, I think Brad Pitt and I would make a great leading man and leading lady. Have you heard of him? Is his star quotient going down? Is it not on the rise anymore? Is there somebody else that I should be looking to do a movie with?

IFC: Well, I’m not sure — I mean, anyone who did a movie with you would have to be content to be in your shadow…

MISS PIGGY: That’s true. But I really am happy continuing to do movies with my Kermit.

IFC: How about a solo movie? Have you thought about going off and doing a Miss Piggy movie?

MISS PIGGY: Hmm. Well, I really would like for the next Muppet movie to not have any of the other Muppets in it. I think that would be a very entertaining movie, and I would get a lot more screen time — and it would make me and all of my fans very happy.

IFC: You’ve played so many different roles over the years — everything from a pirate to a plucky reporter. Is there a character you’d still like to play? Anything you haven’t done yet that might be interesting?

MISS PIGGY: Hmm… [Pause]… I’ve never played a groundhog. I’m pretty sure of that.

IFC: Well, my last question for you is a little off-beat, but it’s something I — and a few other people I know — have always wanted to know the answer to. It’s clear to anyone who’s seen your movies or television appearances that you’ve mastered a unique form of martial arts. What can you tell us about the fighting style you use in front of the camera?

MISS PIGGY: Well, it’s a combination of karate, judo, kick-boxing and something I made up.

IFC: Have you ever thought of teaching it to anyone else? I’m sure you’d have lots of willing students…

MISS PIGGY: I would, but it’s really something I only use as self defense… and when people insult me… or when I want to get my way.

IFC: Thank you so much for talking with me, Miss Piggy.

MISS PIGGY: And thank you!

“The Muppets” is available on DVD and Blu-Ray now. Chime in below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

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Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…

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IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. 

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number! 

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time. 

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by. 

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IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo. 

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim. 

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t? 

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?” 

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud. 

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

The-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

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Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”

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Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).

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Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.

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And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.

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Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

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In this crazy digital age, sometimes all we really want is to reach out and touch something. Maybe that’s why so many of us are still gung-ho about owning stuff on DVD. It’s tangible. It’s real. It’s tech from a bygone era that still feels relevant, yet also kitschy and retro. It’s basically vinyl for people born after 1990.

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Inevitably we all have that friend whose love of the disc is so absolutely repellent that he makes the technology less appealing. “The resolution, man. The colors. You can’t get latitude like that on a download.” Go to hell, Tim.

Yes, Tim sucks, and you don’t want to be like Tim, but maybe he’s onto something and DVD is still the future. Here are some benefits that go beyond touch.

It’s Decor and Decorum

With DVDs and a handsome bookshelf you can show off your great taste in film and television without showing off your search history. Good for first dates, dinner parties, family reunions, etc.

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Forget Public Wifi

Warm up that optical drive. No more awkwardly streaming episodes on shady free wifi!

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Inter-not

Internet service goes down. It happens all the time. It could happen right now. Then what? Without a DVD on hand you’ll be forced to make eye contact with your friends and family. Or worse – conversation.

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Self Defense

You can’t throw a download like a ninja star. Think about it.

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If you’d like to experience the benefits DVD ownership yourself, Portlandia Season 7 is now available on DVD and Blue-Ray.