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The ask Jim Lewis thread is now open

Discussion in 'Henson People' started by dwayne1115, Feb 20, 2007.

  1. theprawncracker

    theprawncracker Well-Known Member

    Sorry Sarah, I didn't see your question until after I sent them to Jim. My sincerest apologies! So, Dwayne next time you send questions, don't for get Sarah's! :D

    And here's Jim's next round of answers...

    Jim, my question is about fan-work. What are you and aren't you allowed to read through? I assume you're not supposed to even glance at fan-fiction, correct? But what about art work and the like? Are you allowed to look at that?"

    As you surmised, I can’t really look at fiction or ideas, since, if something similar turned up in a forthcoming production, the writer-in-question might think their idea/fiction had been stolen. Same of artwork, since the artist could make the same contention. That said, remember that I, Jim Lewis, am merely another rower on the great ship of Muppets and have no hand on the wheel that steers this boat. So showing stuff to me is kinda silly to begin with.

    "What if any difrences is Jim henson as a boss to Brian Henson?"


    "Before Jim Henson died, it was often common for Sesame Street Muppets to make cameo or crossover appearances in Muppet Show-related productions (especially during Henson's last few years of life, though none of them appeared on The Jim Henson Hour), but after Henson's death, very few crossovers happened (the only ones I know of are The Muppets Celebrate Jim Henson, Jim Henson's memorial service (which probably shouldn't count as a production), Muppetfest, and to a lesser extent the "We Are Family" video (that one featured characters from many childrens shows, so I question whether this one counts) and CNN Newstand: People Profiles: Sesame Street (characters from The Muppet Show and Sesame Street talked about Jim Henson during the documentary), and since Kermit was a regular on both shows I don't count any of his appearances on Sesame Street or related productions as crossovers). I know that now it would be difficult to have such crossovers, but The Jim Henson Company still owned the Sesame Street Muppets for ten whole years after Jim Henson's death, and The Muppets for four years longer. So is there any reason why there weren't as many crossovers after Jim Henson died? It would have been great if an episode or two of Muppets Tonight had a cameo by a Sesame Street character or two."

    Very true about crossovers before and after. I think Jim’s presence made it easier to shortcut corporate/branding considerations, since he was (and always will be) the founder of the feast. I also like those “hey, they live in the same universe” moments and would like to see it again.

    "Muppet Classic Theater only had six recognisable characters (Kermit, Piggy, Gonzo, Rizzo, Fozzie, and Robin), and everybody else was either newly-created, a previous puppet reused as a new character, or a generic animal character (like the penguins and sheep). I did notice that Yolanda from The Muppets Take Manhattan was also used (and I think she was mentioned by name... I'll have to watch the special again). Was there any reason for the big lack of older, known characters? I would have liked it if the orchestra featured the usual Muppet Show orchestra (featuring Floyd, Animal, Rowlf, Zoot, Lips, Nigel, and sometimes Janice) rather than the penguin orchestra, and many of the crowd scenes could have easily featured Bunsen, Beaker, Lew Zealand, Beauregard, Bean Bunny, Sam the Eagle, Link Hogthrob (though I imagine that he would have been silent), Dr. Strangepork (he could have also portrayed Miss Piggy's father), Pops, and various Muppet monsters (I did see two frackles in the audience) (and in a perfect world, Digit and Leon from The Jim Henson Hour would have been in the special). Heck, I'm suprised that Statler and Waldorf weren't in the special (they had already been recast at the time). It's also too bad that there weren't any big backstage scenes (these could have easily featured some older characters like Beauregard). I know that Jim Henson and Richard Hunt were dead, which would be an explanation for the lack of their characters, but Frank, Jerry, Dave, and Steve were all still active at the time. It was still a good special, but it was a bit sad to see so few old characters and so many new ones, especially in crowd scenes."

    As I’ve said elsewhere, this was one of the very first productions we did after Jim and Richard’s passing. I think that was the main reason why we focused on the particular characters we did, and let some of the supporting roles go to new characters. If it had been done earlier or later, I suspect we’d have taken all of your suggestions above. This was, by the way, not a special, but a direct-to-video done for Disney. And I still hope it again sees the light of day, since it has (I think) aged well despite the above concerns.
  2. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    heres my question i have heard and read some things about a Scritpt or story or something written my Jim Henson and Jerry Jull called "the Cheapest muppet movie ever made. Have you seen or heard anything about it?
  3. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    Question for Jim Hill:

    You said that you co-wrote Muppet Classic Theater with Bill Prady. Were you involved with the writing of all of the story segments, or did you write some all by yourself while Bill wrote others by himself (perhaps you wrote three and Bill wrote three), or is it a little bit of both (perhaps you and Bill both wrote two story segments by yourselves, and then collaborated on two togetehr, or something like that)?
  4. theprawncracker

    theprawncracker Well-Known Member

    Hey Jim, do you think the characters like Croaker, Goggles, and Blotch, from Kermit's Swamp Years will ever be seen in another production? Or are they pretty happy down there in the swamp?
  5. ploobis

    ploobis Well-Known Member

    Hi Jim Lewis!

    I have a question about Muppets Tonight.

    Who's idea was it to have Clifford host Muppets Tonight?

    Thank you! :)
  6. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    i like that qustion to
  7. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    ok now i know the ruls but im going to go ahead and change them a little i think we can go ahead and post at least three qustions at a time. We will only use one qusetion at a time when sending them in but it will give us a chance to have a good mix of questions, So here is mine.

    I was wondering did you help in the writing of the Movies.com show? If so was it hard to keep up with all the movies, and did you have to watch the movies before you could write?
  8. Beauregard

    Beauregard Well-Known Member

    I have a few questions...

    Interviews. I know you have said that you work collaboratively in creating replies for interview questions, but I was wondering how these work exactly? There is obviously a combination of ad-libbing, quick wit, and pre-scripted replies, so do the Muppeteers memorize stock answers? Are there just ideas thrown around and remembered? Do you work with the person doing the interview to get exactly what they are looking for? Are there more rigid rules of what can and can't be said now that the Muppets have new performers who do not know them so well as Frank, etc?

    Changes. Now that many of your ideas have been made into productions, is there any specific thing you wish you could go back and change? A scene, a line, etc?

    Merchandise. I've seen the inside of Pixar studios in many making-of's, and their offices are always crammed with merchandise related to their movies. Do you have the Muppet action figures, plushes, etc hanging around the Muppet Studios?

    RKUNKLER Well-Known Member

    Hey jim do you think that The Muppet Show season 1 boxed set will ever be released uncut and is The Muppet Show second season boxed set uncut.
  10. PhsychoChimp

    PhsychoChimp Well-Known Member

    I have a question. Is it hard to write for Rizzo?
  11. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    Well, eight people have asked questions, and with a bit more variety. Since the rules are changing a bit, I'll ask two more questions. I will be on vacation this week, and won't be able to post, so I'll ask two now. Maybe they'll be answered by then.

    • In the Muppets Tonight epsidoe with Coolio and Don Rickles, Ernst Starvos Grouper had a bodyguard named Behemoth. This monster had previously been used in older Muppet productions (most notably singing the "Under my Skin" number in the Muppet Show episode with Vincent Price). Was this actually the monsters official name back then, or did a writer just write the character into the script, and whoever was in charge of puppets chose to pick a random puppet (as opposed to designing a completely new character)?
    • I know that nearly 30 minutes worth of footage was cut from It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie, but were there any major scenes, sublots, or running gags that were written in the script but not filmed?
  12. SarahOnBway

    SarahOnBway Well-Known Member

    Don't forget to send my question when you send them in! It's posted before the last batch were answered!
  13. theprawncracker

    theprawncracker Well-Known Member

    Great questions everybody! Don't know where Dwayne is... I would've thought he would've sent them in by now. Oh well. :D
  14. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    hey im here ill post these great questons tomorow
  15. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    Well, I might be able to post this week after all. I just found out that my parents are bringing their laptop on vacation. We'll see if I post.
  16. theprawncracker

    theprawncracker Well-Known Member

    Oh! Yay! Thanks Dwayne! Just a little worried about you, that's all!
  17. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    yea thanks for that im fine and all just got busy with work, Who knew wal mart could be so tireing and stessfull.
  18. theprawncracker

    theprawncracker Well-Known Member

    Haha! Who knew? Heh, I'm pretty sure I did, and I don't even work there. :p
  19. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    Ok questions sent and stil some good ones left but keep them coming. will have answers soon.
  20. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    be sure to check out the muppet news flash blog today as there is a new interview section of not only Jim lewis but two other interviews we have done.

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