Guess who’s ready to give us their tots on TV? And no, that’s not a euphemism. It’s Napoleon Dynamite, who’s returning in animated form in 2012 featuring the entire original cast. The show launches on Sunday, January 15th, with two episodes featuring guest stars Amy Poehler, Haylie Duff, and More!
To get prepped for the glorious return of our favorite Liger loving nerd, we hopped on a conference call with Creator/Executive Producer Jared Hess, Executive Producer Mike Scully, and actor Jon Heder… Who you probably know better as Napoleon Dynamite. Right?
Anyway, here’s a few highlights from the chat:
Q: Why go back to Napoleon Dynamite?
Jared Hess: “We always thought that if we were ever to continue the adventures of Napoleon, we’d do it in animated form. There are new characters we discover in the town of Preston as the series progresses. It’s been fun to make the progression, and do things you can’t do in live action.”
“For us, it was just kind of about timing. We’d always had ideas of different ways we wanted to explore the characters… Once we met up with Mike Scully, we just had a little fun with it.”
Q: How will it fit with FOX’s other Sunday shows?
Mike Scully: “I think it will sit very well in the world of The Simpsons, and the whole Sunday night line-up. Rough Draft who did Futurama is doing the animation… The shows compliment each other well, but it has its own voice.”
“It’s similar to The Simpsons in terms of color palette—“
Jared Hess: “—But design-wise, its very different.”
Jon Heder: “They’re all so very different, I think it will run well with animation because… You have the lead, the romantic interest girl, the best friend, the different family members. They all have an agenda. It opens itself up to many different storylines, and conflicts in each of their own relationships.”
Q: Where does this take place in the complicated Napoleon Dynamite timeline?
Jared Hess: “We decided… This kind of takes place before he meets Lefonda, and gets married. We wanted to pursue Kip pursuing a lot of online relationships, more than we did in the film. But Lefonda will show up down the road.”
MS: “You don’t want a stud like Kip Dynamite tied down to one woman.”
Q: Are you excited to have Napoleon back?
Jon Heder: “I’m finally able to tell fans that yes, there will be more stuff. I was just kind of excited to get back with the character, get back with the rest of the cast.”
Q: What’s coming up?
Jared Hess: “We have an episode set at a Liger production facility, where Napoleon gets a job there… We wouldn’t have been able to do that in live action. Animation lets you have a lot more fun.”
MS: “We’ll [also] get to see Uncle Rico at the big game, where he blew it.”
Q: Was it easy to jump back into the character?
Jon Heder: [Napoleon Voice] “It was pretty easy… Uh…” [Laughs from everyone] “It’s when I’m most relaxed. You can hide behind your eyelids, you don’t have to scream that much. All that works for a movie, for a lead character in an ongoing animated series, you have to explore all the different sides to Napoleon you didn’t even know were there.”
Q: Has Napoleon changed at all for the show?
Mike Scully: “Napoleon, at his core, is the same person…”
Jon Heder: “We don’t talk about ninjas a lot in the movie, but of course we’ll talk about them in the TV show, and they will be awesome.”
Q: Will we see some awesome dance moves from Napoleon?
Jared Hess: “Absolutely.”
Jon Heder: “They’ll have to do some sweet motion capture for that.”
Napoleon Dynamite premieres on FOX on January 15th, 2012.
MTV Geek interviewed the cast of Napoleon Dynamite this past Summer at San Diego Comic Con: