On Sept. 25, The Simpsons will return for its 28th season. In addition to the new season, Simpsons fans can also anticipate the show’s first hour-long episode.
During Fox’s TCA Summer Press Tour today, CEO of Fox Dana Walden announced that the show would run its first hour-long episode (including commercial time) in January of 2017. The episode is a “hip-hop homage to The Great Gatsby,” according to Entertainment Weekly. The episode, titled “The Great Phatsby,” is about Mr. Burns’ friendship with hip-hop mogul Jay G.
Homer Simpson will narrate the episode, like Nick Carraway did in The Great Gatsby. Taraji P. Henson (Empire) and Keegan-Michael Key (Key & Peele) will also guest star for the episode. Jim Beanz will create new songs for the episode, including a betrayal and a revenge rap track.
In the episode, Mr. Burns is betrayed by Jay G and enlists Bart and Homer to seek revenge. Lisa also gets a wealthy boyfriend and Marge opens a boutique store.
“This was just going to be a regular episode, but the table read went so well, in a fit of passion and excitement and ambition and excess, we decided to supersize it,” said Simpsons executive producer Matt Selman to EW. “And we haven’t done a huge amount of stories in the world of hip-hop and rap culture, so we just went for it.”
Despite being the longest-running animated series and reaching 600 episodes last fall, The Simpsons has never aired an hour-long episode before. Previously, they had a two-part episode: “Who Shot Mr. Burns,” composed of both the season six finale and the season seven premiere.