Appearing before a class of UCLA film students to promote an Academy Awards-sponsored filmmaking contest, MacFarlane opened up the floor to questions and one about a Family Guy movie he answered with a rather definitive answer
It’s just a matter of when, It’s hard to do that while you have the series going on at the same time; I think that’s why it took The Simpsons 20 seasons to figure out how to do it.
We do know what the Family Guy movie will be. The Simpsons movie, I thought, was hilarious, but the one criticism I would have is that it’s a story they probably could’ve done on TV. There could’ve been an episode that had that plotline. That’s the challenge with animation. You pretty much can do any story you want, so what is the reason for the movie? We finally hit on the answer to that question, and it will be something that would be impossible to do on TV.
This isn’t too far off from what MacFarlane stated back in July 2008 –
I have an idea what it’s gonna be. It’s definitely something you could not do on the show, which to me is the only reason to do a movie.
Given how much the show gets away with on a weekly basis on network TV, I have a feeling that MacFarlane is more likely referring to something impossible to do on TV in a story sense rather than in just a humor or joke sense. I would hazard a guess though, that whatever the story idea is there will probably be musical numbers involved.
With his being tapped to host this year’s Academy Awards, I expect that we’ll be seeing more comments from MacFarlane about a Family Guy film though I don’t think that the substance of those remarks will change all that much.