Tom Cruise. Johnny Depp. Orlando Bloom. Christopher Nolan. We sent up the Kermit-signal and Hollywood responded in droves to answer the most important issue of our age: who is your favourite Muppet? Yes, we dared to pit Kermit against Miss Piggy and Bunsen against Gonzo. Frankly, the answers will surprise and amaze you. Read on to find out which Muppet scares Bradley Cooper, which one makes Orlando Bloom a little weak at the knees, and which one Angela Lansbury most admires, among many others...
This feature first appeared in issue 272 of Empire magazine. Subscribe today.
Ryan Reynolds"Gonzo. I like a mentally unhinged creature with a fist up his ass. Call me crazy, throw me in jail, go ahead - that's what I'm into."
James Franco"The Swedish Chef! Borgy, borgy, borgy!"
Werner Herzog "I do not know Jim Henson and I do not know the Muppets."
Danny Dyer"Easy. My favourite has to be the Cookie Monster. Sitting down, stuffing loads of cookies into his mouth, I can sympathise with that. You know what I mean? Oh, and also The Count, because I love numbers."
John Carpenter"The Count. My son used to watch Sesame Street and was obsessed with him."
Carla Gugino"Who's the one with the mad eyelashes in the band? Janice! I love her. She's groovy."
Tom Cruise"Kermit. He has this incredible sweetness, a real purity of spirit. And what was that song, It Ain't Easy Being Green? That's poetry, man! It was that sweetness of character with the poetry of that song… He cracks me up!"
Jerry Bruckheimer"Kermit, because he's cool."
Jon Favreau"Kermit's rendition of Rainbow Connection can still bring me to tears."
Duncan Jones "Kermit. I know it's a bit predictable, but he was the host, you know? He should do the Oscars. I actually worked briefly at the Henson Creature Shop and came to hate one of the puppets, which was the baby dinosaur from Dinosaurs. I'd come home stinking of latex from doing so many versions of it — so that's my least favourite one!"
Danny DeVito "Snuffleupagus. I had a terrible experience once. I was going to do Sesame Street and went to 11th Avenue in New York, where they do the show. When I walked onto the soundstage, my heart sank. Because 30 feet up, hanging on ropes, looking really limp, was Snuffleupagus. It almost destroyed me."
Jim Carrey "My favourite is Mr. Snuffleupagus, because my daughter was obsessed with him. She called him 'Ubble-ubicus' and that memory pops into my head from time to time. But I also like Oscar The Grouch. There's always room for a grouch."
Johnny Depp "Animal. There's a certain irreverence that I like."
Guillermo del Toro "Animal is my favourite because his insane stare and manic energy are married to enormous charm. He is the ultimate rock star."
Tom Hanks "Gotta be Animal. It's always the drummer, man."
Gary Busey"I'm a human Muppet! Those guys are out there. I love the drummer in the band. His name was Crazy and he was chained. He'd pound on the drums and I appreciated that; I was a drummer in another life"
Daniel Craig "Animal. I based my character in Cowboys & Aliens on him."
Amy Poehler "Animal, who taught me: when in doubt, go crazy."
Will Ferrell"I could be really obvious and say Kermit or Miss Piggy, but I won't. Instead, I'll go with the two grumpy men, up there in the balcony. Statler and Waldorf? Yep."
Ray Winstone "It has to be the two old geezers in the balcony. To be honest, maybe I'm a bit like them now."
Jason Bateman "The guys on the balcony. They're shit-talkers and they seem like they want to be anywhere but there. I've always been into that kind of comedy."
Christopher Nolan"Statler and Waldorf. They remind me of my DP and first AD"
Geoffrey Rush"I adore Beaker. He just seems so off the planet; he lives in a constant state of frantic panic. He's so marginalised in his eccentricity, but you love him anyway."
Bradley Cooper"That guy with the weird head. Beaker. Those segments in the lab used to give me a strange feeling, actually. The length of his face, his nose, his mouth — he scared me"
Zack Snyder "Sam The Eagle is hilarious. He's the Stephen Colbert of Muppets. He's very bossy, so I don't take any directing tips from Sam. I try to be more like Kermit."
Edgar Wright"Bunsen Honeydew is awesome because he has spectacles but no eyes. It's a genius gag."
Angela Lansbury"Miss Piggy. She has such style and feminine grace. She's got wit and she's an icon."
Kevin Spacey "You don't really need to ask — there is only one. She is the ultimate diva, the queen of Muppets, and a little misunderstood. She has a good heart, and was one half of one of the great screen romances. It has to be Miss Piggy."
Liam Neeson "When I was in theatre in Belfast in the '70s, The Muppet Show was a firm favourite. I liked Kermit and Miss Piggy. Even as ostentatious and egotistical as she was, she loved his green simplicity. She was madly in love with him and that was beautiful."
Orlando Bloom"Miss Piggy. I just love that voice she has. (Deep sigh) It's probably the best Muppet voice there is, to be honest."
Danny McBride"I've always been a Fozzie fan, because he was the struggling stand-up comedian. I identified with him."
Abbie Cornish "I remember there was some guy with a balloon..."
Rutger Hauer "Walt Disney is my favourite Muppet."
Ricky Gervais"Robin is my favourite. I absolutely love him. Muppet Christmas Carol is one of my favourite films — that story is already one of the greatest ever, and the only way you can improve it is with Muppets."
Nick Park "I always loved the big monster one, Sweetums. It was those big eyebrows, going up and down. They were an influence on Gromit."
Noah Wyle "When I was on Sesame Street, I got along well with Big Bird. He plucked out two of his tail feathers. I have them pressed in a book at home."
David Yates"I quite like Ernie. Ernie The Frog."
Simon Pegg "It has to be Floyd. His eyes are basically tubes. Also, my dad was a musician and he loved the music in The Muppet Show."