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The older I get, the more I find myself enjoying films based on younger children’s properties more than I do anything geared towards young adults. If that means I prefer poop jokes over incessantly post-apocalyptic settings, then I guess I shamefully cop to it. While I was a little too old for Dav Pilkey’s Captain Underpants book series when it hit bookstores back in 1997, the upcoming DreamWorks Animation adaptation was already an intriguing project. And it just got a lot more interesting now that its cast has been filled out with some of the funniest comedians in Hollywood, including Kevin Hart, Ed Helms, Nick Kroll and Jordan Peele. Writer/actor Thomas Middleditch has also signed on for his vocal talents.
According to TheWrap, Hart and Middleditch will be headed back to pre-pubescent times as they will be voicing the film’s two main characters George Beard and Harold Hutchins, fourth graders whose passions in life include treehouses and comic books. The trouble begins once they unwittingly bring their favorite creation, the titular superhero Captain Underpants, to life after they hypnotize Principal Benjamin Krupp, the child-hating head of their elementary school. The boys must then follow the essentially powerless Krupp/Underpants around to make sure he doesn’t get injured while performing his super feats.
Helms will take on the role of the principal turned hero, while Kroll will lend his nasally voice to the major villain, Professor Poopypants, a science teacher gone bad. Peele will play Melvin, the brainiac childhood nemesis of George and Harold. Of course, an animation’s cast is only as good as the writing, so it’s a good thing The Muppets writer Nick Stoller handled the script, which will be directed by Monsters vs. Aliens helmer Rob Letterman.
Hart fans need not worry about seeing the actor’s face in this one, as he’ll be all over cinemas in 2014, first with the recently released buddy cop comedy Ride Along, and then in the rom-com remake About Last Night and the sequel Think Like a Man Too. Helms, meanwhile, has been in the Yahoo! original series Tiny Commando, and may be seen in Joe Carnahan’s action comedy Stretch, if Universal doesn’t shitcan it entirely.
Kroll and Peele are just breaking out into films, as they’ve pretty much taken over comedy on television. FX’s fantasy football comedy The League and the sketch comedy The Kroll show have been keeping the actor busy, and he’s currently filming Ross Katz’s comedy Brother’s Keeper. Peele has been killing it for the past few years on Comedy Central’s ridiculously clever and funny sketch show Key & Peele, while also showing up on everything from The Mindy Project to Modern Family. You can find MIddleditch in The Wolf of Wall Street and in the upcoming Mike Judge HBO comedy Silicon Valley.
While there isn’t yet a set release date for Captain Underpants, fans of the series can expect at least another 3 books coming out over the next three years. So keep your pants on, and we’ll let you know more news about the film when we hear it.