Who snogs a frog
“I’ve never really seen myself as a leader of the feminist movement. I leave that to others. I really care mostly about myself and promoting my own agenda”
The new film once again extends the strange metafiction of Piggy and Kermit’s relationship by suggesting that her beloved Kermy has previously jilted her at the altar. The couple’s on-screen, off-screen two-step has frequently blurred the line between biography and fiction.
She acknowledges certain parallels with modern headline-grabbing celebrities. Long before Heat magazine regulated the practice among reality TV stars, Kermy and Piggy lived out a very public soap opera. But that, she insists, is just who they are: “I don’t mind playing myself. I prefer it actually. There’s nobody else who can play me as well.”
So this isn’t one of those convenient Hollywood sham marriages? And things are rosy between Kermit and herself?
“Oh yes. Except when he squeezes the toothpaste from the middle of the tube.”
Still, her extreme adherence to postmodernism has, on occasion, created confusion: “No no no no no no,” she clarifies later. “Moi is not plus-size. Moi is playing the editor of plus-size Paris Vogue.”
Does that mean she knows what trends we should watch out for?
“Well, I think everyone next winter will be wearing coats.”
She immediately dismisses internet speculation that she and Angelina Jolie attend the same Thai plastic surgeon. Her beauty regime requires neither Botox nor any other invasive procedure: “I just decided a long time ago that I wasn’t going to get any older,” says Miss Piggy. “Ageing just isn’t for me.”
One of the few celebrities to speak out in favour of phone-tapping in journalism, she suggests that new technologies and an oldfashioned bear trap represent the best way to ensnare and keep your man: “I have no problem with phone tapping,” Piggy says. “I actually have a GPS chip implanted on Kermit.”
But surely she, of all people, must tire of seeing private, personal details regurgitated as tabloid headlines?
“Huh. Wow. I never thought of it working the other way around.”
Over the years Piggy has played Mrs Bob Cratchit in A Muppet Christmas Carol, Benjamina Gunn in Muppet Treasure Island and all four witches in Themuppets Wizard of Oz. She greatly preferred the screenplay for the new film, having thrown it away without reading it.
Her devotion to method acting has reputedly alarmed like-minded fellow thespians, including Daniel Day-lewis. “I walk on and do whatever I feel like,” she explains. “I find that is the best way to play moi. Nobody can truly capture the essence of moi like moi.”
It’s been 10 long years (“not long enough”) since Piggy last worked with the Muppets crew. She is aware of their foibles. Animal isn’t trying to get into trouble, she explains, “he just does”. Other Muppets require careful handling: “I don’t mind working with the Swedish chef,” she admits. “I just don’t want to eat any of his food.”
The movie is a big deal for these secondary Muppet players, but for Piggy, who has always worked steadily, it’s a step down. What’s her secret? Why has she collaborated with Dolly Parton and the Jonas Brothers where other Muppet careers have stalled?
“Well, I love the screen legends – Garbo, Marilyn, Dietrich – and I feel that I’m a continuation of that timeless legacy.”
Recent TV appearances with Jay Leno and Chelsea Lately remind us that the karatechopping Miss Piggy was once a great – nay, the great – feminist icon. It was Piggy who codified and translated the ideas of secondgeneration sisters Susan Sontag and Andrea Dworkin into mass entertainment. How does she now feel about her new third-generation heirs, I wonder? Is she disillusioned with the movement?
“I’ve never really seen myself as a leader of the feminist movement,” she trills. “I leave that to others. I really care mostly about myself and promoting my own agenda against the agenda of any other group of people. I’m certainly flattered to be viewed in that way. But only when it works for me.”
She looks down at her neck and fingers a string of fine pearls: “Kermy bought me these on his credit card,” she snorts delicately. “He just doesn’t know it yet.”
Meaty role: Miss Piggy as Emily Cratchit in