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Given Seth MacFarlane’s knowledge and talent when it comes to musical numbers, it was a little odd that his 2012 blockbuster smash Ted went the route of MacFarlane’s other talent: filthy joke writing. Granted, Ted did sing Hootie and the Blowfish, but that’s not what I’m talking about. His next film, the western-themed comedy A Million Ways to Die in the West, doesn’t outwardly look like it will be musically-minded, but his latest bit of casting is just one more step in that direction.
Vulture reports Neil Patrick Harris will lend his universal appeal to the already impressive cast. Harris appeared on MacFarlane’s Family Guy a couple of times playing Barney, the How I Met Your Mother role that catapulted him back into the public consciousness. His last feature role was in the The Smurfs adaptation, and he will be appearing in its sequel this summer. He’ll also be reprising his role in Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2.
None of those films are very musical, but his 2008 starring role in Joss Whedon’s Internet-borne Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog showed off many of his singing and dancing skills. And when combined with the off-centered lyrical stylings of co-star Sarah Silverman, the Mamma Mia! background of Amanda Seyfried, and MacFarlane’s throwback sensibilities, Harris’ casting seems to cement at least one musical number for Die in the West, which also co-stars Giovanni Ribisi, Charlize Theron and Liam Neeson. The film is about a coward farmer who wants to win his woman back, and enlists the assistance of a gunslinger’s wife, so expect some derogatory gun humor.
In other news, Deadline reports Universal Pictures will co-finance the picture, completing the Ted reunion. The film also now has a release date set for May 30, 2014.
For those unfamiliar with Dr. Horrible, you can watch the entire production below.