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Is Henson being sold?

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

  1. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member


    Ok well the way i saw the discussion was that Disney was getting slammed for releasing crappy sequels of things and treating even it's own stuff badly. I was more or less agreeing with that, saying that everyones at it anyway, and adding in another reason that wasn't being mentioned - that there aren't many other decent ideas around anyway so it's not just because they want to milk the cash cow. If you want to slam Disney (and i'm not saying you are wrong) you need to look at all the reasons behind something rather than just grabbing one and going with it.

    Talking about the treatment of MTI Vs Peter Pan 2 we may get into some UK/USA problems here but from what i understand MTI was pretty well promoted here with a lavish party/premiere (BlueFrackle and Michael went to it along with Frank Oz, Brian Henson etc), toy premiums, and plenty of TV exposure. Obviously i am a little blurry on what it was like in the states but i do have a lot of the TV appearances and promos on tape and it seemed like Disney was getting behind it though they did have something else out as well at the time. Obviously Peter Pan 2 got made a fuss off - they released it in a fairly quiet period for kids movies, it's 100% their own so they make more money, and they have places like Mc Donalds in their pocket so plenty of promotion there. While PP2 was promoted well though i don't think the promotion was as effective as MTI and at least over here, Peter Pan 2 was a total washout despite the promotion. I'm just saying that for a film that wasn't totally 'Disney', MTI didn't get a real bad deal from them.

    I guess we are getting back to how people were saying that Disney doesn't respect or understand Henson but i actually think that things aren't as bad as people think. Yes Disney get upto all sorts but then all companies do - i guess the question is whether any other company would treat Henson any differently than Disney would - i really doubt it right now. Seeing as the Henson sale contracts don't (as far as i'm aware) give up total creative control you might find Disney treating Henson a little better than they do their own productions.
  2. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    I was actually surprised how little promotion there was for MTI in the West Coast. There were a few 20 second spots and an appearance by Kermit on the Tonight Show, but on E (Entertainment Televison) they never ran the MTI preview - and they run any and everything they are sent. There were no bilboards or posters except for at theaters and no displays at that. I don't even rememver a public premier being reported. It was all very discouraging to me.
  3. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    "We're in a sewer. Nothing beats the Magic of DIsney"--Gonzo (you can take this quote either way!) Buying copyrights is a dangerous game. It may have a positive effect, or a negitive one. Most companies just buy a copyright because it's there. Viacom bought the rights to all the Terrytoons cartoons, and except for a few Mighty Mouse Tees, they've disappeared. L'oreal cosmetics company once bought the rights to Filmation, and did nothing with it! On the flip side, Golden Books purchased the rights to Underdog cartoons, and released him on home video and DVD! But let's look at the facts. Disney owning Henson may have as many advantages as disadvantages. Back about '90, they started having Muppet attractions at their themeparks (one of the only things I'd die to do, I'd rather go to Universal and see Bullwinkle!). And in '93, videos came out by the dozens (Fraggles, Muppet Babies, Muppets, etc.). Plus they eased us in to the purchase with the Muppets at Disney World special (so much more watchable than any number of sitcoms go to Diseny!) I doubt they'd have a Muppets go to "Weird German Studio no one has heard about" special. (It'd go something like this, Kermit: Here we are at EMTV Studios. Fozzie: How can you tell? Kermit: I'm not sure. I don't even think any of the employees know what this is!) --------------------------------------------
    But on the down side, let's face it, Disney may have a cutesy, sugar coated apperence, but deep down, they're an evil cutthroat business. They've no idea of what they are doing. They've given up catering to the mouse, and started cowtowing to the Bear (Winnie the Pooh, to be more exact). They'd over merchandise the stupidest things and the Muppets would be, in these times, left out in the cold. Look at the 102 Dalmations merchandising frenzie. It was a critically reviled movie, it flopped, and merchandise was shipped to a landfill just to get rid of it. Meanwhile, Emperor's New Groove was a Two thumbs up movie, and it was left out. Not to mention the fact that DIsney could find a way to butcher the Muppets or ruin them or something. (For some reason they bought the rights to Power Rangers! No kidding!) WHo knows what the new business will do?
    So what ever side your on, just think that who ever buys it may, or may not use them.
  4. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member


    I know somebody's gonna fuss at good ole Foz, but here goes:

    2 things I complain about: Muppet Babies and Disney.

    Muppet Babies cause I don't think they help the story at all (although Baby Fozzie is cute, he's really made to be dumber than usual).

    Disney because I know that they will murder anything that is not originally Disney, which is evident since they murder their OWN stuff.

    EM.TV was disastrous, and folks have said "They promoted such and such..." and I don't see where anything was helped by it.

    But these are only my own opinions and not necessarily intended to be the sermon by which others may follow.

    I think JHC has got a grasp of what they want to do now, and I think they're beginning to look "BACK" at what they've done, and we will see bigger better things from the Muppets. I'm still set in my decision that I think JHC should belong to the JHC and all will be well again...they can partner with other companies who don't necessarily have to own them.

    I wish I had the money to buy JHC, and we'd all have some jobs there! LOL! But, JHC would be able to make their own decisions and carry out the ideals set forth by Jim the Man, not those ideals decided upon by Michael Eisner and Co.

    But, that's only what I think.
  5. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

  6. Patty

    Patty Active Member

    I actually hope it all goes to Disney. I'm not a Disney fan by any stretch, but it is what Jim wanted. He said in late interviews that the muppets would live forever at Disney. He was no fool. He'd seen Disney's high times and low times.

    Disney has put other properties above the mouse before and will gladly do so for love of money. Perhaps Disney would release some long-forgotten Muppet TV specials. Perhaps they'll open additional amusement park exhibits.

    Say, shouldn't the Henson kids be able to buy the company back for what they received?
  7. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    Half of what the Henson family received was in EMTV stock which is slightly more valueable than Enron stock - or at least the last time I checked. :)
  8. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member


    The Henson kids actually managed to get rid of their EMTV stock just before it really dropped massively. From what i've heard they made a big loss but narrowly avoided serious financial catastrophe. I don't think there is a member of the Henson family now with EMTV shares !

    If the company was going for say 300 million they could probably be able to afford to buy it back, but i doubt they'd want to. They must have forseen big potential financial problems with the company to actually sell it - i think it's safe to say they didn't see things getting any better. They still make enough money out of Henson stuff and their own businesses - charging EMTV rent for the Henson studio's must bring in a few million.
  9. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member

    I think had Jim lived, the deal with Disney would have been okay as long as he was there to over-see it all; but I don't think he would have really REALLY wanted them to own the whole thing.

  10. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    I don't think Jim would have approved of the EMTV thing - they made all this crap up at the start about Haffa having a family business but i really don't think Jim would have wanted his company in German hands. The Muppets are kinda an American institution - i think if anyone it would have been Disney.
  11. frogboy4

    frogboy4 Inactive Member

    "The Muppets are kinda an American institution"

    I couldn't agree more. An American born institution with UK relatives, of course. LOL!:)
  12. Bean Bunny

    Bean Bunny Well-Known Member


    EM.TV sure has been very silent about the Muppets right now. They said that would sell them this spring but there have no article or news about this going on. Is EM.TV just going to keep the Jim Henson Company?
  13. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member

    I agree with Luke. I don't think Jim would have approved of that, either.

    In the meantime, EM.TV could just give JHC to me, and I'll make sure we all have jobs!!

  14. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member

    Yeah it's amazing that the Henson kids did that - i would think there is a big reason why that we all have no clue about, it wasn't very like them. I suppose money talks though and EMTV certainly made them an offer they found hard to refuse.

    I agree with Foz, we should all have jobs at Henson - and i volunteer to be head penguin trainer and chicken stuffer !
  15. EmmyMik

    EmmyMik Well-Known Member


    I'll give you a pack of gum if you'll let me be Bill's bodyguard...

  16. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member

    Emmy, Jackie....

    You are the guards of Bill's Body, the keeper of the glasses and the scissors, and the protector of Steve's hair and Jerry's beard, and Karen's Red Fraggle Hat. :)

  17. Luke

    Luke Well-Known Member


    You may have appointed the keepers of the hat but as CEO of the 'Karen Prell Canoodlers' club i must insist the hat is placed on a golden plinth at all times, aside from Muppetfests whereby it will be placed in a bag with the gratuitous penguin and be surrounded by security guards at all times.
  18. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    First of all, I'd like to correct myself. The first post I put about this subject, I said DIsney purchased Henson. That's wrong. I meant "Merged." But beside that,
    I hope the Muppets don't get purchased by Viacom. Why? They own, like I said before, Terrytoons (mIghty Mouse, Mighty Heores, Heckle and Jeckle). They do absolutely nothing with it, except put stuff on t-shirts. They're more interrested in making money off RUgrats (Muppet Babies were soo much better), and Rocket Power (BLEEEEECH!!!). Spongebob, as well, but I like Spongebob! They'd probably put the Muppet gang on a coupla bad t-shirts, Lunchboxes, and say good day, let's toss 'em in the vault!
    I can't stand when someone decides to purchase a company, just for kicks. It's an impulse buy. It's the three dollar Magazine you buy that's right next to the counter that you never read again!
  19. EmmyMik

    EmmyMik Well-Known Member

    Foz and Luke

    I can't speak for Jackie, but Luke, you can be keeper of the hat.

    Foz, can I have a nifty title like:

    Emmy the Spoovy -- Safety Operations Advisor of the Jim Henson Company

    (well I already have the "Emmy the Spoovy" part. I just want to be the "Safety Operations Advisor")...

  20. sidcrowe

    sidcrowe Well-Known Member

    To PATTY

    Yeah, I've thought about that, too. But the deal fell through when Jim passed, and most important, the people Jim himself picked to deal with, to be the stewards of the Muppets...the people he trusted personally...well....they aren't there anymore. The folks he made his deal with aren't the ones who'll get the Muppets.

    That's why I don't want Disney.:mad:

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