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Is Henson being sold?

Discussion in 'Muppet Headlines' started by Jrobert, Apr 18, 2002.

  1. Jrobert

    Jrobert Active Member

    Hello to all, I was wondering if anyone has any current information on if Henson is being sold or bid on and who the potential bidders will be?

    Is Disney still looking into Henson? Viacom?

    Any updates?

    FER SURE Well-Known Member

    If disney buys Henson i will have to shoot myself. They offer nothing positive in the field of creative development. I used to love them , then I worked for them. They arent a happy family company. They are a major media conglomerate with money as a bottom line for all decisions.
  3. DrGoshposh

    DrGoshposh Active Member

    Sale of Henson

    I think the official answer is "No one knows for sure."

    Their German owner has been very vocal in the past about wanting to get rid of them, but they have stalled repeatedly, most likely because they can't find anyone who will pay what they need to get their money back (they over paid for the company in the first place).

    Michael Eisner said recently in an article, that the asking price for the Henson Company was too high for Disney right now (but I believe Disney is, and will always be interested in owning the Muppets).

    So things are up in the air for now, and we're all anxiously waiting for any kind of news.

  4. PeachBlossom

    PeachBlossom New Member

    Re: Sale of Henson

    In a recent post, DrGoshposh said:
    > (they over paid for the company in the first place).

    Duh, Of course they did because after Jim died his wife Jane, son Brian and daughter Lisa got greedy and they tried to BLACKMAIL (and I make no bones or apologizes for use of that word) Disney into paying more money Eisner then turned around and said "See Ya Wouldn't Wanna Be Ya!" then came along EM.TV & Merchandising AG who was suckered into buying the company and much like that episode in the Simpsons where the Germans bought Mr.Burns power plant the Germans realized the error of their ways and sold the power plant back to Mr.Burns for less money then they paid. Unfortunately and unlike the Simpsons EM.TV can't find anyone to buy The Jim Henson Company because potential suitors are not stupid enough to pay the amount that they Germans want!
  5. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    Actually blackmail allegations aside, that Simpsons episode is VERY like the whole EMTV/Henson thing - even staff at the Henson company recognise that. There are certainly people at the Henson company who haven't stopped laughing about just what EMTV bought and for how much.
  6. Muppets1985

    Muppets1985 Well-Known Member

    Will Disney just give darn EM.tv there money and be done with! Grrr... sorry lol got a little mad for a sec, lol
  7. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member


    I think you have the situation entirely wrong. I think the idea f Disney being the victims of some sort of blackmail scheme is completely laughable.

    Once Jim died, Disney chopped their asking price substantially and attempted to bully the company into completing the merger. By then most all of the Henson licensing and merchandising deals had been cancelled so there was no one but Disney to promote their product.

    The original deal penned allowed Jim to retire at anytime, but once he passed away, that deal flew out the window. Henson received a settlement from Disney and remained in debt for several years. Around the time Muppets tonight was released they were worth nearly three times the Disney offer. If anyone was trying to take advantage over a situation I think it was Eisner.

    And with Disney’s new disrespectful practice of releasing their two (WD produced) Muppet DVDs in a cropped format shows how truly uninterested the Mouse is in the Muppets or their fans. I was in the fence for a while, but now I really hope they don't get them. They are only after the cheap buck!
  8. sidcrowe

    sidcrowe Well-Known Member


    Yeah, cropping our beloved Muppet stuff is inexcusable.

    With the evolution of technology, we should be getting MORE not less.

    I guess they edit down to acommodate most casual folks' small attention spans, or get them
    hungry for more. Either way, it's not right for Henson stuff because all of us here know that
    although Jim used puppets, his work was complex. We meepers of the faith are having a bit of an uphill climb.

    Plus, Henson (the Frog) owned by another enterprise of that sort (the Mouse), will ALWAYS have
    Disney execs thinking of the Mouse first. Our beloved characters and what they represent will
    PERMANENTLY be thought of as a profitable, yet micro-managed sidekick. They would NEVER want to have Henson usurp Disney. :mad:

    I hope they don't get Henson, either.
  9. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    Disney has time and again exhibited a lack of respect for Henson and do not seem to understand their heart or appeal. Funny that they may end up being their reason for survival, though I hope not.
  10. Muppets1985

    Muppets1985 Well-Known Member

    **Funny that they may end up being their reason for survival, though I hope not.** .... Frog Boy what do u mean by that? im confused! lol sorry!, but u know how i am all ways...confused. i guess thats my middle name Stevie Confused Baker lol lol....
  11. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    Henson is owned by a company that is in financial trouble and Henson Co hasn't had many successful projects for a while. It has been public knowledge for a while now. Disney would likely milk a lot of money out of the Muppets and get them over their latest hurdle, but I (and many others) believe that it will be at the overall expense of the Muppets by turning the enterprise into cheap children's entertainment. With the new Fox series, I think Henson is trying to stay away from that and keep the characters on the more adult end of the spectrum.
  12. sidcrowe

    sidcrowe Well-Known Member

    I'd rather have greasepit McDonald's own them than Disney.

    Maybe they'd stay outta their way and we'd get more toys...

    ...and fatter:D
  13. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    I think the MCC DVD's cropped release sums up Disney's judgement on the Muppets.
  14. Foreignman

    Foreignman Well-Known Member

    I think every member form this forum, and all genuine Muppet fans, should pitch in 4 million dollars each to buy the Muppets. Then it would then be owned by us, the fans. If we wanted the Muppet Movies on widescreen, too, we could just make it so! Whose with me?!?!?
  15. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    Own the Muppets? I call Pepe!
  16. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member


    Jamie :- Have you switched opinions on this ? I thought you were pro Disney/Henson around about the time this forum started ? Jeez - release a DVD in full screen and the full wrath of the frogboy is released !!!! ;-)

    All :- I am very much pro-Disney - i think it's a little wrong to use how the company has produced a single DVD as to how they would treat the Muppets if they owned them. The decisions on DVD's are made for reasons (even if they are wrong) and by very different people. In thinking whether you are pro or anti Disney owning the Henson company i think you have to be mature about it and rather than just go with what you want, look at it from a different (maybe business level) and think about whether what Disney can give to the Henson company would be the best thing for them. People have been saying how the muppets need more exposure, better deals, better promotion, a large 'brand' behind them, lots of finance, access to studio and TV sets and facilites, stores and merchandising deals on a high street scale. All these things Henson don't have as much as they'd like off right now but if Disney owned them, they would have it by the bucketload.

    You need to weigh up whether losing a small part of their independance and business control (while retaining the brand, puppeteers and tradition) is worth giving up when you are getting so much back in return. The few things Henson would give up, they aren't actually doing very well at on their own and they seem to need help (like getting indpendant producers in to do the Fox show) so i actually think that to the everyday muppet fan, a Disney owned Henson would be visibly better (ie :- more shows & merchandise) but i do understand that the Henson company and more hardcore fans might feel otherwise. The thing is, if it isn't Disney (and its extremely unlikely now to be Henson themselves) then it's just gonna be some other U.S or European mega corp and they might not be as friendly as EMTV have been when the latest project doesn't make enough money.
  17. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    I have always been wary of Disney. This problem with the DVD highlights a larger-scale problem with the company. If they had done any research on the Muppet series at all (and I believe it is crucial to do so) they would have discovered that the other releases contain widescreen versions.

    They are obviously going with the kiddie market here instead of the typical Muppet fan. I see this sloppy and cheap treatment of the Muppets as a symptom of a larger problem if they buy Henson. I understand and do see the pros of a Disney buy-out, but this latest thoughtless decision has brought me back to the other side of the argument. I just wish they had more respect for the Muppets. They still do not understand the Muppet market or don’t care.

    How could they? They don’t even care enough about their beloved classic films. They keep releasing sequels to animated films while critics slice them apart and audiences roll their eyes or stay home. The Disney label has really been cheapened in the last decade. The only reason they release these disposable sequels is because they make quick cash from parents of very young kids. Smart in the short-term, but at what expense?

    I feel the four-fingered bloated white glove is too constricting for Kermit’s flipper.
  18. sidcrowe

    sidcrowe Well-Known Member

    To Frogboy

    Great analysis.

    "Sloppy" and "cheap" is the truth.

    I mean, they have THE films there, and when they're deciding how to package it, WHY omit
    a widescreen option? What would it have taken? A few hours' of rendering time on a supercomputer
    to do it?

    There is no widescreen option, because "widescreen" is typically intended for work that is important, and the Disney
    people simply DO NOT feel that Jim's work is important.

    Merely including a small line of text on the box that says "widescreen option," would--to them--seem laughable.

    Who needs a "widescreen" option on a **** Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen video? It'd be ridiculous!

    Sadly, by its omission, Disney is clearly demonstrating what little real respect they have for Henson.

    To have the Henson legacy cut, edited, chopped up and presented as forgettable kid vid fodder would be worse than
    the whole company failing. At least we fans would always respect it.

    And that's all that matters.
  19. sidcrowe

    sidcrowe Well-Known Member

    Everybody---my iMac

    Yeah, my text is a mess.

    Sorry, my iMac won't display the entire submission field as it did for Delphi.

    Darn. It looks a little messed up, but then so am I :)


    Disney:mad: :o :confused:
  20. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    That's kind of what I am thinking. Disney certainly doesn't stand for quality anymore (with the exception of Pixar, of course).

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