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The Henson Timeline: The 1980's

1980 "The Muppet Show," season #5 taped

1980 Prototype Sesame Street play park "Sesame Place" opens near Philadelphia

1980 First arena show, "Sesame Street Live," begins touring

1980 "The Great Muppet Caper" begins filming

1980 Miss Piggy and Kermit are featured on the cover of LIFE magazine

1980 Muppet Stuff retail store opens in New York City

1981 "Of Muppets and Men: The Making of the Muppet Show," a TV special, is produced in London

1981 "Here Come the Puppets" airs

1981 "The Muppets Go to the Movies" special taped in London

1981 The Creature Shop creates over 100 different character puppets for Jim Henson's first big fantasy feature "The Dark Crystal"

1981 Kermit and Miss Piggy make a cameo appearance in "An American Werewolf In London"

1981 "The Dark Crystal" begins filming

1981 First creative meeting about "Fraggle Rock" in London

1981 "The Great Muppet Caper" premieres

1981 "Pigs in Space" taped for NASA space shuttle

1981 "Miss Piggy's Guide to Life" published

1981 Muppets comic strip syndicated

1982 "Miss Piggy's Treasury of Art Masterpieces from the Kermitage Collection" published

1982 "Fraggle Rock" taped in Toronto

1982 "The Fantastic Miss Piggy Show" TV special airs on ABC

1982 "The Dark Crystal" premieres in the U.S. on December 17

1982 Jim Henson establishes the Henson Foundation to promote, develop and encourage public interest in the art of puppetry

1982 Muppet Magazine's first issue is published in December

1983 "Fraggle Rock" debuts on HBO and on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

1983 "John Denver and the Muppets: Rocky Mountain Holiday" TV special airs on ABC and album released

1983 "Big Bird in China," Children's Television Workshop special, airs on NBC

1983 "The World of the Dark Crystal," a documentary special, airs on PBS

1983 "The Muppets Take Manhattan" filmed in Queens, New York

1983 National Wildlife Federation Public Service announcements taped in Central Park with Kermit and Fozzie (Jim Henson & Frank Oz)

1983 "Don't Eat the Pictures," Children's Television Workshop special, taped

1984 "Dreamchild" characters built at Jim Henson's Creature Shop, London

1984 "The Muppets Take Manhattan" premieres in the United States

1984 The "Sesame Street" movie, Sesame Street Presents Follow That Bird, filmed in Toronto

1984 "The Muppet Show on Tour" arena show begins touring

1984 "Jim Henson's Muppet Babies" premieres on CBS on September 15

1984 "The Bells of Fraggle Rock" Christmas special airs on HBO

1984 Oral-B Muppet toothbrushes introduced

1985 Principal photography begins on "Labyrinth"

1985 "Little Muppet Monsters" taped

1985 The first Sesame Street movie "Follow that Bird" premieres in theaters

1985 "The Muppets - A Celebration of 30 Years" taped in Toronto

1985 Fraggle Float appears in Gimbel's Thanksgiving Day Parade in Philadelphia

1985 "Jim Henson's Muppet Babies," season #2, airs on CBS

1986 "Tale of the Bunny Picnic" taped in London

1986 Kevin Clash joins Henson Associates

1986 "Labyrinth", starring David Bowie, is released in the U.S. on June 24

1986 "Inside the Labyrinth" documentary produced

1986 The pilot for "Jim Henson's the Storyteller," Hans My Hedgehog, is filmed in London

1986 "The Christmas Toy" taped in Toronto

1986 "Jim Henson's Muppet Babies," season #3, airs on CBS

1986 "Fraggle Rock" ends production after 96 episodes

1987 "Jim Henson's The Storyteller" Hans My Hedgehog and Fearnot air on NBC

1987 "Puppetman" pilot taped in Canada

1987 "Down at Fraggle Rock" documentary airs on CBC in Canada

1987 Animals built by Jim Henson's Creature Shop in London for the film The Bear

1987 Animated "Fraggle Rock" debuts on NBC Saturday mornings

1987 "Jim Henson's Muppet Babies," season #4, airs on CBS

1987 The Muppets appear on Ted Koppel's "Nightline: A National Town Meeting on Wall Street and the Economy"

1987 Jim Henson inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame on November 15

1987 "A Muppet Family Christmas" airs on ABC

1988 "Jim Henson's The Storyteller" A Short Story and The Luck Child air

1988 "The Witches" filmed in Norway under the direction of Nicholas Roeg

1988 Turner Broadcasting reaches four-year agreement with the company for the exclusive U.S. broadcast rights to "Fraggle Rock" and "The Muppet Show"

1988 Shooting begins on "The Jim Henson Hour" pilot in Toronto

1988 "The Ghost of Faffner Hall" begins production in Newcastle, England

1988 "Jim Henson's Muppet Babies," season #5, airs on CBS

1988 Henson Associates officially adopts the banner Jim Henson Productions on September 30

1989 "Fraggle Rock" becomes first American television series to be broadcast in the U.S.S.R.

1989 "Sesame Street: 20...and Still Counting" airs on NBC

1989 "The Jim Henson Hour" premieres on NBC on April 14; Episodes include "Jim Henson's The Storyteller:" The Heartless Giant, The Soldier and Death, The True Bride & Sapsorrow; Dog City, Song of the Cloud Forest, Monster Maker, Lighthouse Island and Miss Piggy's Hollywood

1989 Merger agreement between The Walt Disney Company and Henson Associates, Inc., is announced

1989 "The Ghost at Faffner Hall" premieres on HBO

1989 "Jim Henson's Muppet Babies," season #6, airs on CBS

1989 The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are built in London by Jim Henson's Creature Shop

If you would like to make an addition to our timeline, e-mail Muppet Central. Please include your full name, the year, the information you would like to add, and a source documenting your submission.

 
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Fan site Muppet Central created by Phillip Chapman. Updates by Muppet Central Staff. All Muppets, Bear
characters are copyright of The Muppets Studio. Sesame Street characters are copyright of Sesame Workshop.
Fraggle Rock, Creature Shop and similar likenesses are copyright of The Jim Henson Company.