Joel McHale & Giovanni Ribisi Join Seth McFarlane’s ‘Ted’

Published 4 years ago by , Updated August 24th, 2013 at 10:53 am,

Ted, Seth McFarlane’s live-action feature film directorial debut, is shaping up to be a darker, more adult version of McFarlane’s zany animated TV shows (Family Guy, American Dad, and The Cleveland Show).

The hard R-rated tale revolves around a thirty-something man (Mark Wahlberg) and the walking, talking teddy bear who came to life as a result of a childhood wish – and has since become a lazy, womanizing alcoholic. Now, according to Deadline and Variety, respectively, Joel McHale (Community) and Giovanni Ribisi (Avatar) have been added to the cast.

McHale will play the sleazeball of a boss to Wahlberg’s girlfriend – played by Mila Kunis – a role that he should be comfortable with after playing semi-sleazeball Jeff Winger in Community for two seasons and counting. Meanwhile, Ribisi will be playing Donny, a man obsessed with Ted the teddy bear.

Both Joel McHale and Giovanni Ribisi have a busy year ahead of them. Besides starring in one of the best comedies on television, Community, McHale hosts The Soup, is hosting Saturday night’s Spirit Awards, and is co-starring in The Big Year, What’s Your Number?, and the Spy Kids reboot later this year. Likewise, Ribisi will be co-starring in Contraband with Wahlberg, Waco, and The Rum Diaries with Johnny Depp.

Ted McFarlane’s comedy stylings are, in my opinion, hit or miss. While his Family Guy is occasionally funny, I find myself more often than not becoming annoyed or bored by the random cutaway jokes. And while I enjoy The Cleveland Show more than I do Family Guy, it suffers from some of the same issues from time to time.

seth mcfarlanes american dad Joel McHale & Giovanni Ribisi Join Seth McFarlanes Ted

That said, American Dad, which was just renewed for its seventh season, is an underrated animated gem and one of my favorite TV shows. When it first came out, everyone – myself included – unfairly labeled it a Family Guy rip-off and nothing more. However, as fellow Screen Ranter Michael Crider noted, there are no stupid cutaway jokes at all, and the humor that exists is organic and character-based, a la early Simpsons episodes.

Hopefully, for Ted’s sake and mine, Seth McFarlane can utilize more of that American Dad brand of humor and less of the “I’m going to make a joke and make a joke and continue making that same freaking joke until your head explodes from frustration” Family Guy brand of humor.

Ted, which will be a combination of live-action and CGI (think GarfieldAlvin and the Chipmunks, and Yogi Bear) begins filming next month.

Sources: Deadline and Variety

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  1. This is shaping up to be so good.

  2. Ted (I assume the bear) is sounding like that soul possesed bear (Kon) from Bleach. Which peeks my interest is this movie. He probably won’t be very nice like Kon but uber pervert. xD

  3. time for live-action 80′s references. who cares. wonder if every joke will b tied in by “like that time i was….”, and fill in the rest with whatever mediocre joke. complete hack.

  4. This seems to be something picked out of a Supernatural episode. There was an episode where a teddy came to life but he was so disgusted by the humans that he shot himself dead. Pretty funny! I sure am gonna see this one.

    Also, “I’m going to make a joke and make a joke and continue making that same freaking joke until your head explodes from frustration.” – HAHAHAHAHAHAHA :D

    • Thanks!

  5. Seth seriously needs to expand him self a bit. I liked Family guy in it’s first 3 seasons it was fresh and original. It crossed a line while still being funny and at times very smart. Since it’s return it seems to be pushing boundaries for the sake of pushing boundaries and isn’t anywhere near as good as it once was. American Dad is basically the same show as family guy only less funny and less witty. I used to be a fan of his work, but it’s all the same at this point and has become very un-smart with it’s humor.

    Joel Mchale is fantastic and I hope that this film turns out better than anything Seth has done for awhile. I’d like to see Joel be successful especially since things look grim for Community one of the greatest comedies on TV in history.

  6. You lost any and all credibility when you mentioned “The Cleveland Show” in the same sentence as “enjoy.” Family Guy annoys you?! I’m incredulous.

    Sorry, thanks for playing. Please turn in your card at the door.

    • Oh, you got me. I’m stung. I guess I’ll go and quit life now.

      Or, you know, you can go and enjoy the things you do and I’ll go and enjoy the things I do.

      Also, I really “enjoy” the fact that you couldn’t stand that I said I currently “enjoy” The Cleveland Show “more” than I do Family Guy, which I had already called annoying to the point of head explosion. You’re really taking issue with that kind of faint praise? Or maybe you just skipped to the word “enjoy”?

      Regardless, I find the subject matter more interesting. Family Guy, in terms of subject matter, is just The Simpsons, or 99% of all the other sitcoms of the past forty years. The Cleveland Show deals in African American sitcom tropes. There’s no Simpsons equivalent. My point being, it’s ground far less covered.