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Henson sells Muppets to Disney

Discussion in 'Muppet Headlines' started by samtheeagle, Feb 17, 2004.


What do you think of Disney buying the Muppets and Bear?

Poll closed May 17, 2004.
  1. It's great! Disney can keep the Muppets alive and visible.

    58 vote(s)
  2. It's awful! The Muppets will go downhill and quality will suffer.

    87 vote(s)

  1. Mark Filton

    Mark Filton Well-Known Member

    Oh yes I DID PREDICT RIGHT, Luke. You can't have your "cake and eat it too." :D

    All you guys tell me to lay off because the Henson kids deserve a life of their own. Well that is FINE with me. I always said it is THEIR building and THEIR company, so what is to argue? I agree with the fundamentel right of the kids.

    I said back then that the sale of the building was not needed, and you all said "they need money from it to make a movie" and so WHERE IS THE MOVIE? HA HA! NEVER will there be a MUPPET movie from the Henson kids so I was RIGHT!

    I guessed that the sale of the building was chump change compared to the fortunes of multimillionaires, and I said back then that it means bad things coming and that the kids want nothing to do with puppets and stuff. They want to wash their hands of the glory days and leave, and I was RIGHT.

    WHY else would the kids keep the Henson name and at the same time get rid of Kermit...the MOST FAMOUS puppet in all ther world??? They want to be in show business, but they want NOTHING of puppets, and their DAD was Muppets, not FARSCAPE and that alien dog movie. The kids wash their hands and go to do other things in show business and NOT PUPPETS. Am I wrong?

    "The Henson's are gonna be making the Muppet shows and movies for at least another three years. You say they might suffer creatively but then why hire the Henson Company as consultants for further years if Disney don't care about the qualtiy?"

    Wow. 3 years. Whoopee. That's just there for the transition. It has no future. It takes that long to make a movie sometimes. That favours Disney to make it easy going at the changing over. As for consultants, it doesn't amount to anything. That's like Gene Roddenberry hanging around as a consultant. Nobody has to pay attention to him. Star Trek quality went bad, too. The owners do what they want.

    Disney does not care about quality first. They care about money first. Maybe you like Mighty Ducks and Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen and Lion King 1.5, but they are NOT quality to me. Pixar is the good stuff. DIsney USED to be quality, but they are CRAP now.

    Wait a minute, maybe you don't like them movies either. I don't mean to offend, I am just making my point, too.

    Crappy DIsney owns the Muppets. Why should I be happy? Okay, Brian never wanted to be his Dad. That is obvious, and the kids made dumb deals, had bad luck, and made some crap, too. Now the Muppets are looked at like a "retro" thing for the old-timers like you and me. So now Disney gets them and will probably make good money, but it will be kiddie crap time. WHY is it wrong to be upset? People have different views sometimes.

    "If Brian Henson hated puppets THAT much then why would they have Rygel in his pet project, Farscape? The Henson Company have definitely NOT got out of puppetry. If anything, the Disney deal means there will be MORE puppetry for them to work on."

    I don't mean to sound bad, but I say "so what" to one or two puppet characters in a normal show.

    If somebody just sold the Muppets, I would certainly say that they have just got OUT of puppetry in a big-time style. And I say "if anything," the Disney deal means there will be more puppet projects for DISNEY to work on, not Henson.

    I will take that back after we get the new "Henson" logo and IF it has any puppet character on it. Henson company is now just another company that will do anything, and might build you a monster for a fantasy movie if you want one. Just a hired hand.

    You say I need a "little more knowlege." Well, we are all in the dark unless I see your name on a Henson production. So I think we are all equals around here.

    I predict the next Disney Muppet thing will stink, and the new Henson company logo will have NO puppets on it.

    MARK my words, for I am MARK.
  2. Mark Filton

    Mark Filton Well-Known Member

    1: Media icons

    I am just saying that Disney equals Mickey, and not Kermit. If Farscape was a monster hit, Henson would still not replace Kermit the icon with a Farscaspe character, it would stay Kermit (if they still owned Kermit, that is).

    DIsney will NEVER EVER sell Mickey Mouse. So, since there is already an icon there, Kermit will always be thought of as second fiddle. That is sad to me.

    2: "just like Henson is bigger than Kermit the Frog."

    We are all guessing. Without KERMIT, Henson is just another small-time producer. THere are a ton of production companies. Always a different one at the end of my favourite TV shows. Companies everywhere. Henson IS KERMIT......or WAS.

    It is only my opinion. No big deal.

    3: "Under Disney ownership, they'll get the kind of distribution and marketing they deserve (which is the POINT of the deal), and hopefully the quality will be good as well. We'll see what happens, 'cause it hasn't happened yet."

    No. I say the POINT of the Muppets is quality and happy feelings and grown-up style laughter as well as kiddie style too. Disney is all kiddie time crap. Maybe I should go to the movie Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen. Man, that is garbage. Kiddie crap and teen-time junk. That is Disney. Fantasia was 100 years ago.

    Do we have a deal for money and more popularity? Yes.

    You say "hopefully" the quality will be good.

    I laugh not at you, because you are here with the other Muppet fans. I laugh AT DISNEY! :D

    "Hopefully the quality will be good?" FROM DISNEY???? :p

    I laugh at the quality of Disney. Even the Disney family hates Disney. Disney is a crazy vampire who will suck the blood out of the Muppets and turn them into vampires. Disney stinks. Here is a story for you. Every day more bad news from Disney.



    Disney fails to appease critics
    By Michael McCarthy, USA TODAY
    The board of directors of Walt Disney (DIS) came under intense fire Thursday after its decision to split the chairman and CEO jobs.

    Critics called the move a mere reshuffling of chairs, designed to buy time with large shareholders and proxy advisory firms, such as Institutional Shareholder Services, which had urged the entertainment giant to split the posts held by Michael Eisner since 1984.

    The board "unanimously" supported Eisner though shareholders returned a 43% "no-confidence" vote against him Wednesday at the company's raucous annual meeting in Philadelphia.

    And the board gave director George Mitchell the chairman's post despite the 24% "no-confidence" vote received by the former Senate majority leader and peace envoy to Northern Ireland.

    Among the fallout Thursday:

    •The California Public Employees' Retirement System (Calpers). The nation's largest public pension fund views the moves as a "megadisconnect," said spokeswoman Pat Macht. The influential Calpers, which owns 9.9 million shares of Disney stock, repeated its call for Eisner to resign by year's end and for the board to begin a CEO search.

    "The only difference between yesterday and today is that two people have different titles," Macht says.

    •North Carolina. State Treasurer Richard Moore applauded the Disney board for splitting the jobs but said Mitchell is not a good pick for chairman because of his friendship with Eisner and a conflict of interest arising from past consulting work with Disney. "It will be almost impossible to create an arm's-length situation between him and Eisner. Without that, we've achieved nothing." The state owns about 2.1 million shares.

    •Ohio Public Employees Retirement System. The promotion of Mitchell completely "ignores" the 24% of shareholders who opposed his re-election, says Cynthia Richson, corporate governance officer. She cited Mitchell's lack of business experience and questioned his ability to stand up to Eisner. The Ohio fund owns 4.7 million shares.

    •Tragic Kingdom. Roy Disney and Stanley Gold, the two dissident directors who launched the "no vote" campaign against Eisner, are threatening legal action. The duo called the decision to keep Eisner a "blatant rejection of shareholder will" and said Mitchell is a "terrible choice" for chairman.

    The company declined to comment Thursday but reiterated the board's statement Wednesday that its actions are in the "best long-term interest of shareholders."

    Comcast has urged the board to reconsider its $49 billion unsolicited takeover bid for Disney. It declined further comment Thursday.

    it is just my opinion that Disney is a mess, makes junk, and I have very little hope for "quality" from DIsney.

    I am having the Muppets wrecked in front of me. SHould I be happy because the Disney Muppet garbage will be all over and on buses?

    NO :cry:

    It is OKAY to be angry, that is why we have these emoticons :grouchy:
  3. dmx10101

    dmx10101 Well-Known Member

    Jeez, are you writing a book about this or something?
  4. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    You certainly DO need a "little more knowledge" Mark because this deal lets the kids do exactly that. This way they get to make puppet shows that they otherwise couldn't have afforded to make, and more of them. THEY will be making it, and the quality will be largely upto them - not Disney. Disney will just pay them to make stuff under the Disney name but being produced by Henson these projects WOULD carry the Henson logo. The Henson's will produce the Muppets next movie because it will happen in the time of their development deal. Three years is the initial period of their production deal, Henson have the writers, muppeteers, puppet workshop and everything else Disney wouldn't want to bother doing themselves - that deal will more than likely get renewed over and over.

    When they will be sticking their hands up Muppets, thinking what to do with Muppets and building more Muppets than EVER and this time with great funding - i don't see how they are completely washing their hands of puppets altogether?
  5. AndyWan Kenobi

    AndyWan Kenobi Well-Known Member

    For the optimist in me (and that's most of me), Luke, your comments remind me of the end of "It's A Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie," when Bunsen tells Ms. Bitterman that with her financial help, the Muppets could put on some really great shows. Maybe the Disney funding is what the Muppets need to get back to their real business. I really appreciate your perspective, that the (extended) Henson family is really going to be behind the creative renaissance of the Muppets, no matter whose money is involved.
  6. Mark Filton

    Mark Filton Well-Known Member

    "You certainly DO need a "little more knowledge" Mark...the quality will be largely upto them - not Disney."

    Last time I did some checking, the owners of something are the bosses.

    What we are coming down to in the bottom line is this:

    You have faith in Disney :zany:

    I have NO faith in DIsney :D

    The proof in the pudding will come out sometime no matter what we say.

    If Disney makes something beautiful and top-notch quality, and is written really good and MAYBE EVEN HIRES JERRY JUHL, then I will HAPPILY shut myself up and be glad to get behind the Disney way of things.

    If Disney makes a crummy piece of crap, or just a totally run of the mill mediocre kiddie time movie, then I will be predicting RIGHT again.

    As for the deal you think has happened, all of these things could have been done without selling the Muppets. They are SOLD, and Disney will have new people coming in, and if somebody wants to drive them into the ground and make garbage, no Henson alive will be able to stop it. That's a fact. That is the difference of true ownership that Disney has of the Muppets.

    Very first production, the Muppets will have Jim's name wiped off of them :cry:

    What a start :rolleyes:
  7. Mark Filton

    Mark Filton Well-Known Member

    "the creative renaissance of the Muppets"

    Yes, even I admit Disney was amazing...many YEARS ago :rolleyes:

    Today Disney is a giant mess crashing around making money because it is so big. The successes and good feelings come from the past of Disney. You are expecting a "creative reaisance" from a company who makes the movie "Teenage Drama Queen?"

    That is OK for you to think so. We all have an opinion.

    Me, I have no faith in creative quality coming from Disney :D

    "You shall know them by their fruits"

    I say that the fruits of Disney today is crap :grouchy:

    Muppets have been sold to the crapmasters as far as I am concerned. Everybody can take a guess, but the proof will be the first production. Maybe most will be happy with a good buck and some comedy, but I am expecting GREATNESS :excited:
  8. MimiSchoon

    MimiSchoon New Member


    I would like to know when Disney will start marketing the Muppets. My husband and I are expecting and are using the Muppets and Fraggle Rock as our nursery theme. It would be nice to have comforters and decorations through Disney. :)
  9. AndyWan Kenobi

    AndyWan Kenobi Well-Known Member

    That's a good question. I was under the impression that the Disney deal didn't actually take effect for a few more months now, so hopefully soon after that!

    Congrats to you and your husband!
  10. BoyRaisin2

    BoyRaisin2 Well-Known Member

    Yes, I want to see "The Muppets at Walt Disney World" in my local video store by the end of the year.
  11. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    Very unlikely. I heard that the first thing we will see of Disney's Muppets will either be Oz, or the birthday in 2005. Not much until very late this year, early next year it seems.
  12. muppetlover

    muppetlover New Member

    This will be great if they let the muppets be a separate enity than Disney...I will be upset if I see the muppet babies on House of Mouse.... :mad: Let's just hope this helps bring the muppets back :) Someday I want me kids to be able to watch the muppets. :)
  13. sarah_yzma

    sarah_yzma Well-Known Member

    I bet they'll be seperate....pooh doesn't run around in mouse house...they're seperate.

    I think we all need to sit back and take a deep breath. We can analyze until we're blue in the face and have developed carpal tunnel, but that doesn't change the fact that what we type in the big scheme of things, doesn't count any more than a hill of beans....
  14. BoyRaisin2

    BoyRaisin2 Well-Known Member

    No, the Pooh characters were actually regulars in "House of Mouse." But let's remember that the difference between them and the Muppets is that Disney themselves actually animate Pooh, Cinderella, Snow White, and the other non-Mickey characters that appear in Disney stuff like that.
  15. Mark Filton

    Mark Filton Well-Known Member

    Heh heh heh :D

    I have to laugh a little bit. A new member comes on board, starts up here in this thread, and is dreaming of Disney made Muppet blankets, and everybody talks as if it is normal goings-on. Then the DIsney "yes" poll numbers go up.

    Heh heh.

    Oh come on. Maybe it is a coincidence. I'm sorry don't get mad.

    Anyway, here is a story of more Disney RACIST movies. That stupid Vidalgo movie.


    "Disney's executive director of international publicity, Nina Heyn, was quoted last year as saying, in an apparent moment of unguarded honesty, that "no one here really cares about the historical aspects", a line the company has been careful not to repeat since."

    You see what I mean??????????

    You guys all are buying the spin, and have the high hopes. I have ZRO ZERO ZERO ZERO faith in DIsney. NONE!

    Okay, here comes the true story...


    Disney rides into trouble with story of cowboy who conquers the Middle East

    By Andrew Gumbel in Los Angeles

    10 March 2004

    Once upon a time, a fabled horseman from the Wild West accepted an unusual challenge from a Middle Eastern businessman and rode his American mustang to victory against the odds in an extraordinary 3,000-mile Arabian desert race known as the Ocean of Fire.

    That, at least, is the "true story" touted by the Walt Disney Company as the basis for its film Hidalgo, which has just opened in the United States.

    The premise is certainly bringing in audiences beguiled by its old-fashioned adventurism and derring-do sensibility. But it has also triggered a cultural row of rare intensity, as historians, Native Americans and Arab and Muslim interest groups have all piled into Disney, accusing the company of giving credence to outrageous fabrications in the interests of promoting a crude American cultural imperialism and making a fast buck.

    "Pony baloney," one critic has called it. "Liar, liar, chaps on fire," intoned another.

    The film stars Viggo Mortensen - fresh from his triumph in The Lord of the Rings - as Frank Hopkins, who conquers the Middle East and his hundred competing Bedouin riders with the sort of ease and bravado the US military now hunkered down in Iraq can surely only fantasise about.

    The historical Hopkins, whose memoirs form the basis for the film script, claimed to have been the son of a Sioux princess, a US Cavalry trooper from the age of 12, a witness to the massacre at Wounded Knee, a buddy of the Indian chieftain Black Elkand President Teddy Roosevelt, the champion of hundreds of endurance races, including a 2,000-mile marathon from Texas to Vermont, and a regular performer in Buffalo Bill's touring Wild West Show.

    It was while performing with Buffalo Bill in Paris in 1889, he said, that an Aden businessman, Rau Rasmussen, invited him to compete in the Ocean of Fire, a 1,000-year-old race across Saudi Arabia's Empty Quarter and up through Mesopotamia into Syria. Despite the harshness of the terrain and the physical disadvantages of his horse,Hidalgo, he crossed the finishing line in 68 days, anywhere between one and two days ahead of the nearest competition. (The film, naturally, makes the finale a lot tighter.)

    The problem is, Frank Hopkins was almost certainly a fabulator and a confidence man whose tales of heroic deeds were little more than tall stories. There is no mention of him in US Cavalry records, or in accounts of the Battle of Wounded Knee, or in the extensive records of Buffalo Bill's travelling show. His name does not crop up in Teddy Roosevelt's voluminous correspondence. There is no evidence that the Texas-Vermont race was even run. He was never photographed in the saddle, except as an old man "re-enacting" the exploits of his youth.

    As for the Ocean of Fire, it too appears not to have taken place, either in 1890 or in any other year of its supposedly glorious 1,000-year-old history. The notion of a 3,000-mile race from Yemen to Syria is in itself laughable.

    As the Arab News newspaper wrote recently, a race of that length starting in Aden would finish up "somewhere in Romania". Even following the most circuitous route, the horsemen would finish north of Armenia.

    Awad al-Badi, an authority on Western travellers to Arabia based at the King Faisal Centre for Research and Islamic Studies, put it bluntly: "The idea of a historic trans-Arabian horse race ever having been run is pure nonsense ... simply from a technical, logistical, cultural and geopolitical point of view."

    Much of the damning evidence against Hopkins has been unearthed by an equestrian exploration group called the Long Riders' Guild, which got wind of the Disney film early in the production process and took huge offence at the notion of a big-budget production glorifying a horseback exploit that never took place. "This movie is a massive distortion of history, which further degrades the reputation of the Walt Disney company," say the Guild's founders, Basha and CuChullaine O'Reilly.

    They recruited more than 70 academics and experts to look further into the historical record and expose Frank Hopkins as a hoaxer.

    Their research raised questions about just about everything, starting with the year of Hopkins' birth, variously reported as 1865 and 1884. They could find no evidence he had ever ridden a racehorse or even set foot in the American West. The only known records of employment that they found showed he was a shipyard boilermaker, a digger of subway tunnels in Philadelphia and a horse handler for the Ringling Brothers circus.

    The fact that Disney has bought into Hopkins' fantasies, all the while promoting them as an "incredible true story" in its movie trailers, has touched countless cultural raw nerves. One of the world's leading Native American scholars, Vine Deloria of the University of Colorado, is furious at the uncritical repetition of Hopkins' claims about his role in Sioux history. He wrote: "Hopkins' claims are so outrageously false that one wonders why Disney were attracted to this material at all, except of course the constant propensity to make money under any conditions available."

    And the Council on American-Islamic Relations has written to Disney to complain of negative stereotyping of Muslims and Arabs in the film. Other Arab commentators, such as Hussein Ibish of the Arab American Anti-Discrimination Committee, point to the uncom- fortable parallels between the film and the real-life fantasy of US domination in Iraq and the rest of the Middle East. "The idea," as Mr Ibish puts it, "that being a frontiersman in the United States prepares you for dealing with another group of savages."

    Disney's response to this barrage of criticism has been awkward, not to say contradictory. The film's screenwriter, John Fusco, clings to the notion that his story is based on rigorously checked historical sources, and has even started a website in his defence. But last week a documentary aired on the History Channel, a Disney subsidiary, borrowed much of the Long Riders' research to trash Hopkins' claims.

    Disney's executive director of international publicity, Nina Heyn, was quoted last year as saying, in an apparent moment of unguarded honesty, that "no one here really cares about the historical aspects", a line the company has been careful not to repeat since.

    The company has a large investment to protect - some $80m in production costs alone - at a time when the Disney name has been mired in controversy and its chief executive, Michael Eisner, has faced open revolt from his shareholders, and from Roy Disney, nephew of the company's founder, Walt.

    The film's release date has been postponed twice, perhaps because of the awkward resonances of last year's Iraq war, when it was originally set to hit the cinemas.

    A tale of conquest of the Orient, based on entirely false pretences ... Now where have we heard that one before?

    Now me talking again.....Disney STINKS :D
  16. AndyWan Kenobi

    AndyWan Kenobi Well-Known Member

    I just think it's nice to be nice to newcomers. MimiSchoon, I hope you and your husband get the Muppet nursery you want!!

  17. BoyRaisin2

    BoyRaisin2 Well-Known Member

    What does any of that have anything to do with Disney buying the Muppets? Or what does any of that have to do with anything at all? C'mon, Mark.
  18. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    I think we've ALL established your stand on this issue Mark. I don't think there is anything really more to say on this until we actually see some proof of anything from either Disney or Henson. Until then, we can all just agree to disagree and move on.
  19. dmx10101

    dmx10101 Well-Known Member

    Looks like Mark's on about Chapter 22 by now.
  20. Beebers

    Beebers Well-Known Member

    That poor mom who only wanted a muppet comforter has now run for zee hills from MC.

    :( :( :(

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