D'oh, 'Simpsons' Flick

By Joe Rubi

© New York Post, February 17, 2000.

Beavis and Butt-head did it. The South Park gang did it too.So what's taking "The Simpsons" -- the most successful animated program of all time -- so long to head for the silver screen?

Fox sources say they'd love to do a "Simpsons" movie, but there's one thing missing: a plot.

"Nobody has come up with an idea to sustain two hours, and we're not just cashing in on the financial success," said "Simpsons" executive consultant Antonia Coffman.

"Obviously, while we've been around 10 years, we've done quality programming, and nobody's got the time to devote to [a movie] at the moment.

"And we're not going to just hire outside writers to write a movie for us."

No one in the industry has any doubts about what a "Simpson" film could do at the box office -- a minimum take of $100 million is generally assumed.

Two other animated TV shows have made millions from going Hollywood, shooting feature films while still on the air.

MTV's hit "Beavis and Butt-head Do America" and Comedy Central's "South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut," made during their series runs for $10 million and $20 million, respectively, turned tidy profits on the big screen.

So what are "The Simpsons" waiting for?

Show creator Matt Groening, at least, can hardly wait. He told The Post he's already mulling over film plots.

"I've got an idea for a movie," he said, during a recent interview.

"We've been talking about it, given the amount of attention the show has received and will receive in the coming year," said Groening, who recently received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.


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