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Found new stuff in The Great Muppet Caper

Discussion in 'Classic Muppets' started by mupcollector1, Sep 7, 2012.

  1. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    Oh yeah, right after Crazy Harry "ISN'T THIS EXCITING!" lol (Jerry's Crazy Harry voice is histarical lol) then after that it's the rare appearance of Sam The Eagle and The Newsman together. lol
  2. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member


    But wasn't The Muppet Show seasons split into two runs? Like a Spring run and then a fall run or did they just film all the 20 something episodes all at one and then they debute, or do they film half then take a break and film the other half? I would think they would film half the season so they can rebuild / repair the puppets and everything.
    Also The Muppet Show episodes, each episode was completed within a week right? Three days for filming, some days for Pre-Production (writing, puppet lists, notes to the production crew, etc) and Post (Editing, sound effects, etc). Also in terms of Jack Parnell's Orgastra, they record the music ahead of time and the Muppeteers would just record the voice track and when they film it, the characters lip-sync to the previous recorded track right? Or was the music sometimes performed live? I remember watching the making of the Rachel Welch number with Miss Piggy and the music didn't sound like a recording but being performed during the recording.

    I might have asked this before, I can't remember but Joe Raposo written all the music in Great Muppet Caper right? But was it Jack Parnell's Orgastra that recording the music? Nightlife sounded very close to The Muppet Show music. I got to study all the people behind the Muppet Show and even Sesame music, especially the rock songs, some of the best TV musical scores I've ever heard. :)
  3. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    You know what's interesting in general is when a movie script or any script, there's always drafts and rewrites, so I wonder during the process of drafts if Jerry Juhl and the Muppet writers would add more gags as drafts were being developed. I've heard that even the Muppeteers would make things up on the spot sometimes. So much creative freedom back then. If you look at Hollywood today, it must be tough for someone wanting complete creative control because just how things are so complex and organized and set in stone in terms of the process of TV and Movies in comedy in general.

    Like I mentioned earlier, it's so much fun to catch the small background gags like a street sign that would only be on screen for a few seconds and it would be written ironicly or something like that. lol And it's very common and traditional in slapstick films and even in Animation where there's background gags that is sometimes hard to spot during the first viewing. I always loved this aspect because when you watch it again, you would find something new to laugh at and be like "I didn't catch that before". lol
  4. cjd874

    cjd874 Well-Known Member

    Something I noticed about GMC:
    During the "Happiness Hotel" song, Janice's right arm is actually moving when she plays the guitar. Not like before, when just the left hand "strums" the guitar, as is the case for most Muppets.
    Also...are Lips' FINGERS moving, too? Or do I need new glasses?
    How would the Muppet builders/technicians be able to pull that off?
    check out the musical interlude in the video. Start at 2:44
    Oh what the hey...:insatiable: watch the whole thing!!! :D
  5. Oscarfan

    Oscarfan Well-Known Member

    Lips' fingers always moved, even back on his TMS debut
  6. cjd874

    cjd874 Well-Known Member

    Seriously? I never noticed it before. Thanks Oscarfan!
  7. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    I even noticed that even Kermit's fingers moved when he typed on a computer in some Jim Henson Hour: MuppeTelevision episodes. Though I also noticed that paticular Kermit's eyes are slightly higher up on his head then usual. Or slightly up backword is a better way to put it.
  8. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    I miss the way Jerry Juhl and the original Muppet Writers wrote for the Muppets with that anything for a laugh style. Either a bad pun or an explosion out of no where or a monster eating another Muppet, something crazy happening in the background Gonzo on a Motorcycle or Animal going Alagator Wrestling. I think Muppets Tonight was last time The Muppet did comedy in their trademark style. I love the 1990s movies Muppet Christmas Carol and I just recently watched Muppet Treasure Island and just having "Love Power" the reggie song on my mind. I really want to buy that mp3 when it comes to Amazon, why sings that song? Though what's strange is that lately there's more attention with the main characters then the giant group of gag characters and such. Sure The Muppets did things with the main characters a lot but projects like Treasure Island had gag characters like "Old Tom, Real Old Tom, Dead Tom, Big Fat Ugly Face Baby Eating O' Brian, Headless Bill, etc" running gags like that I miss. Just that campy style of bad jokes that have been a part of Jim's work sense the begaining and even in his High School comics. I'm not sure in anyone can relate, but I just really miss that wackiness and zanniness The Muppets used to have.
    cjd874 and Yorick like this.
  9. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    Actually he was credited for most of season three. In interviews he said that his first epsiode was the Alice Cooper episode, though he was credited in the first episode of the season (and I'm pretty sure that was the first episode of the season in recording order, so I'm not sure what happened there.... Maybe they tapped something with Whitmire later and added it in). There's only six episodes in the third season where he's not credited (so I'm pretty sure he didn't perform in those), episodes 302-306 (which all feature Peter Friedman) and the Harry Belafonte episode (which is one of the few to credit Bob Payne).

    One thing I've noticed in this film (and in Follow That Bird) is that they seem to be trying to hide the arm wires whenever possible. Characters with arm wires seem to just have their arms hanging down most of the time or attached to their bodies, or they're holding onto some kind of prop and the performers are moving the props from the bottom of the screen, or they remain still somehow (like when they're riding their bikes). I watched closely and I didn't see any arm wires when Kermit raises his hand to get a taxi, or when Gonzo pats his head and rubs his tummy (I think digitally erasing things in movies was unheard of at the time). Of course when they run from a car in the opening song Kermit moves his arms above camera slightly and the wires can briefly be seen. I think Floyd and Janice's arm wires can also be seen when they play their instruments (it'd be hard to hide).

    Also a bit weird considering arm wires are visible quite a bit in most of the other movies (until It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie).
  10. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member


    I totally agree. I've read and heard about stuff like how the puppeteers tried to hide the arm rods in movies by having the characters hands on the bottom of the screen most of the time which kind of bothers me because it limits the performance. As a Muppet fan it's not like I point out how many times I see the rods, it's just natual. Even when I do see them, I think it's just cool. :) But probably people who aren't used to watch puppets are like "ha ha, I can see that thing underneigh their arms". But yeah, it's cool what they are doing today to digitally remove them. I know how they can do it with chroma key but of course when working with it, if the arm is near the character themselves, the rod is visable. Like in Wobbulous (I got to learn how to spell this right lol) World of Dr. Suess, I think the Chroma Key stuff was live while filming the performance and not matted in later which I rarely see today. But even them, rods can be seen from time to time. But stuff like It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie, I wonder how they do that? I noticed in behind the scenes footage for Kermit's sword fight in Treasure Island how the Muppeteers where dressed in blue yet they weren't one a chroma key set. How this can work without being a distraction to the set when editing is beyond me but I'd love to figure that out someday as I'm a filmmaker myself. It's fascinating.

    As for Great Muppet Caper I didn't notice not seeing the roads. I know for Kermit calling for a taxi there most have been a rod in his arm to create that effect. But for Gonzo patting his head in stomach or what Kermit would call it "a waste of time" lol, I don't know, I got to watch the movie again to see if I can spot the rods. I know that Chroma key was being used in the late 60s like Jefferson Airplane's White Rabbit performance on Ed Sullivan and also how "C is for Cookie" was made for Sesame (was that 1971 or 1972, pretty early footage). All I can say was Jim Henson was totally a head of his time. He took what puppetry was doing for TV at the time like Bob Clampett where he made puppets for TV without puppet theater and pushed it to the next level being influenced by the Pogo comics and the Stan Fregburg recordings and Looney Tunes must have been an infuence to The Muppets odvously. Who else did a ton of explosions in comedy? lol But anyway, creativing a new form of puppetry for TV and decades later pushing the envelope for puppets for movies which was Dark Crystal and Labrynth. Going from Latex Monster costumes to animatronic puppets which totally influenced the sci-fi movies at the time.

    Sadly puppetry is rarely seen, and before Jim passed he was already getting interested in computer based puppetry. Even looking at The Jim Henson Hour today, it would probably work better today then in 1989 because today's the technology age. Again, a head of is time. Pure genius! :)
    Yorick likes this.


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