Neil Patrick Harris, the How I Met Your Mother star and newly anointed Emmy host, has signed on for the 3-D combination live action/CGI Smurfs: The Movie. IMDB doesn’t have the casting details posted, but Smurf enthusiasts (historians?) are suggesting that Harris–who will not be a Smurf, but a human who interacts with the Smurfs–may play Gargamel, the cat-stroking villain from the original TV series. Worst Previews also posted a garbled plot summary that would cast Harris in more of a Jason-Lee-in-Alvin-and-the-Chipmunks-type role, which unfortunately, is probably more likely.
The Sony project, directed by Raja Gosnell of Beverly Hills Chihuahua “fame,” is just the first in what is meant to be a Smurf franchise. But make no mistake, this is not a sequel to Les Aventures des Schtroumpfs or The Smurfs and the Magic Flute, which apparently also exist. It’s being billed as a family film, but will also no doubt attract NPH fans of the Harold and Kumar stoner variety. Shooting begins in April, the movie is slated for a July 2011 release, and Avatar 2 comparisons are already being made. “This movie just stepped it up a notch,” writes a commenter on movie news hub WorstPreviews.com. “That puts it at notch 1.” As long as it’s better than this.
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