Muppet Babies, Jim Henson’s 1980s animated TV series that imagined Kermit the Frog, Fozzie Bear, Miss Piggy, and his other lovable Muppets as toddlers, is being rebooted on Disney Junior. Last month, we got a quick look at one of the show’s new characters, and today, we’ve learned that the show has hired someone to play one of its key roles: Jenny Slate (Obvious Child, Landline) will provide the voice of Miss Nanny, the Muppet caretaker who – as in the original series – will only be seen from the torso down.
Learn more about Slate’s version of the character below, and check out a video of the actress talking about her history with the show.
Exciting news! @JennySlate will voice the role of Miss Nanny in the new #MuppetBabies, premiering in March on @DisneyChannel! pic.twitter.com/utkfCdwRcO
— Disney Junior (@DisneyJunior) February 6, 2018
Right off the bat, this seems like an excellent choice. Slate is a talented performer with solid comedic chops (her short stint as the vainglorious Mona Lisa Saperstein on Parks and Recreation is perfection), and she has plenty of experience with voiceover work. She’s starred in big animated hit movies like The Secret Life of Pets and Zootopia, and had roles in TV projects ranging from Bob’s Burgers to Animals to Adventure Time. And don’t forget, she also made a splash voicing the title character in Marcel the Shell with Shoes On, a viral video that spawned multiple sequels and a children’s book.
TVLine says that the conceit of the Miss Nanny character will remain the same as it did in the original run: audiences will never see her face. But while the original animated Miss Nanny (voiced by Leave It To Beaver‘s Barbara Billingsley) famously wore striped tights every episode, the network released a statement with a brief wardrobe update for this version of the character: “Adding a new touch to the reimagined series, the pattern of Miss Nanny’s tights will change in each episode to reveal the story’s theme.”
Supervising director Matt Danner (Gravity Falls) will provide the voice of Kermit, Melanie Harrison (Fish Hooks) will play Piggy, Dee Bradley Baker (Phineas and Ferb) voices Animal, Ben Diskin (The Spectacular Spider-Man) plays Gonzo, Eric Bauza (The Adventures of Puss in Boots) will voice Fozzie Bear, and Jessica DiCicco (Adventure Time) will voice a new character, Summer Penguin.
Take a look at this video featurette featuring interviews with Slate and Muppet Babies executive producer Tom Warburton:
Jenny Slate Muppet Babies Featurette
The new CG version of Muppet Babies premieres on Disney Junior sometime in March 2018.
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