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According to Seth MacFarlane, There’s A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST

Seth MacFarlane’s Ted came out of nowhere. Who knew a movie about a potty-mouthed teddy bear would go on to become the highest grossing R-rated comedy of all time? Instead of following the success of his first feature with a sequel, MacFarlane travels back to the Old West to show everyone A Million Ways to Die in the West.

 

MacFarlane stars as Albert, a cowardly farmer who loses his girlfriend (Amanda Seyfried) after withdrawing from a duel. He then meets a mysterious woman (Charlize Theron), who helps him get back on his feet. That newfound courage is put to the test when her husband, a gunslinger (Liam Neeson), arrives in town looking for payback. The Red Band trailer goes out of it’s way to show that there really are a million ways to die in the West, with people dying from giant ice cubes, a camera malfunction, outlaws, drunkenness, wild animals and even a visit to the doctor. But wait, isn’t this a comedy? Yes, yes it is. The R-rated trailer is also full of the sort of potty humor that made Ted a laugh riot. And, just like “Ted,” it looks like most of the jokes in “West” may hit while others land with a thud. Anyone thinking MacFarlane didn’t have the freedom to do whatever he wanted after Ted needs to look at this cast. Nabbing Theron, Neeson and Seyfried is huge, even for a prestige picture. But a comedy set in the Old West? Throw in Sarah Silverman, Neil Patrick Harris, and Ted co-star Giovanni Ribisi for good measure, and A Million Ways to Die in the West oozes potential. It could also be an epic trainwreck.

For years, MacFarlane’s bread and butter has been pop culture jokes. How can that be done in a Western? There is a funny Mila Kunis joke in the trailer, but A Million Ways to Die in the West may be a sign that MacFarlane wants to stretch his muscles … or see if his brand of comedy can work anywhere he damn well wants it to. This sophomore effort clearly has the classic Blazing Saddles in its crosshairs, but the question still remains if it will hit the mark upon its May 30 release.

For good measure, here’s the Green Band trailer. It’s essentially the same trailer, but with all the blood and potty mouthed bits cut out.

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The Author

Ryan Hill

Ryan Hill

Ryan Hill used to spend his time writing screenplays into a notebook instead of doing homework. That love of film and all things storytelling led him to spend most of his time writing. He's been a film critic in North Carolina for over five years, and his debut novel, THE BOOK OF BART, is out now. Please buy it. Ryan also feels odd about referring to himself in the third person.