Everyone’s favorite foul-mouthed teddy bear is making a comeback. NBC’s streaming service Peacock has given a straight-to-series order to Ted, a live-action comedy series based on Seth MacFarlane’s hit 2012 movie.
As reported by Deadline, MacFarlane currently is in negotiations to reprise his role as the voice of the lovable pot-smoking teddy bear. Seth MacFarlane and Erica Huggins will executive produce through MacFarlane’s Fuzzy Door. The project stems from MacFarlane’s blockbuster overall deal with UCP.
Seth MacFarlane will serve as writer and executive producer on the 10-episode series, which is expected to be a prequel to the 2012 movie. There are currently no plans for the film’s human stars, Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis, to make an appearance on the show.
According to sources, the idea of bringing Ted back to life was initially pitched to McFarlane by NBC Universal Entertainment Content chairman Susan Rovner. And as luck would have it the teddy bear’s creator loved it and suggested the prequel concept. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Rovener praised McFarlane calling his ability to create fandoms and beloved characters that we can’t get enough of a “superpower”.
Fans were first introduced to Ted in 2012 in a film directed and written by Seth MacFarlane with the help of, Alec Sulkin, and Wellesley Wild.
The film tells the story of John Bennett who, as a friendless only child living in Boston, wishes for his jumbo teddy bear named Ted, to come to life and become his best friend. The wish coincides with a shooting star and comes true. Then the story jumps 27 years into the future when having a giant live teddy bear around in adulthood proves to be tricky. When Ted prevents John and his girlfriend Lori Collins from moving on with their lives, their relationship gets complicated.
Ted starred Mark Wahlberg as John Bennet and Mila Kunis as Lori Collins. Joel McHale and Giovanni Ribisi were also featured in supporting roles. And Seth MacFarlane provided the voice and motion capture for the title character.
McFarlane’s directorial debut became the highest-grossing original R-rated comedy of all time and resulted in a sequel, 2015’s Ted 2. This time the story focused on the talking teddy bear Ted’s fight for civil rights to be recognized as a real person.
Mark Wahlberg and MacFarlane reprised their roles for Ted 2 but Mila Kunis was replaced by Amanda Seyfried, who was introduced as John’s new love interest Samantha. The film also starred Giovanni Ribisi, Jessica Barth, and John Slattery with a special guest appearance by Hollywood legend Morgan Freeman.
Together, the mini-franchise earned a cult following and raked in more than $750 million worldwide. But Seth MacFarlane is no stranger to on-screen success. His longstanding animated show Family Guy concluded its 19th season in May, making it Fox’s second-longest-running program behind The Simpsons. And in September 2020 Fox renewed Family Guy for a 20th and 21st season.