He's is in talks to appear with Kermit and the gang in a 'European-centric adventure'

Ricky Gervais could be joining Kermit and Miss Piggy in the next Muppets movie.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Gervais is in talks to star as the “human lead character” – the equivalent to Jason Segel‘s role in last year’s The Muppets. Segel has chosen not to return for the follow-up.

Further details about the new character are being kept under wraps, including whether Gervais will be expected to sing. However, the story is said to be a “European-centric adventure”, and filming will begin in London this January (2013). Modern Family star Ty Burrell is already on board, playing the role of a lazy Interpol inspector.

Released by Walt Disney Pictures, last year’s The Muppets was the first big screen outing for Kermit and the gang in 12 years. The film was a hit at the box office, grossing over $158 million (£98 million) worldwide. Bret McKenzie won an Oscar for his original song ‘Man Or Muppet’ and is now writing new songs for the sequel.

Currently untitled, the sequel is being scripted by James Bobin and Nicholas Stoller, who also co-wrote last year’s The Muppets with Segel. Bobin will once again serve as director.