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Universal originally released "Great Muppet Caper"? Wow!

Discussion in 'Classic Muppets' started by MrMuppet93, Apr 6, 2017.

  1. MrMuppet93

    MrMuppet93 Active Member

    While looking for a good film on traditional film stock on eBay (I have 4 16 mm cartoons, and a Famous Studios Popeye in 35 mm), I stumbled across a print that had the Universal logo at the head, but it was faded to orange since it was an Eastmancolor print rather than Tech or LPP and felt bad for one of the villain's henchwomen since she was pretty when I watched this movie on Disney's Blu-ray).

    Anyhoo, discovering who originally released the film can be a treasure, since subsequent releases and big corporate buyouts can ruin a small part of the original presentation.

    I had similar discoveries, including another Muppet one, but it would be too long to list them all.

    I am for original titles being on releases. At least for the Great Muppet Caper and The Muppet Movie, the Jim Henson Pictures logo that's my avatar is a more fitting plaster than Disney castle, since Jim, well, you know.

    Most movies I like with their original logos, unless they scared me and would make something more clean.
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2017
    gavry3 likes this.
  2. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    I used to really wonder about this. As a kid, I grew up seeing the Universal logo before the movie on television broadcasts (before I got the DVD, the only time I recall seeing it on video was at an afterschool program, where I recall when they started it it was during the credits), and for a long time I wondered if maybe Universal just had television rights or not.

    But then several years ago, I saw a post at Muppet Wiki where I was informed that Universal held the US distribution rights to ITC's films in the 1980s, which included GMC and The Dark Crystal. Interestingly, in Jim Henson: The Book, when it talks about Jim purchasing the distribution rights to TDC from ITC around the time it was released, it said that he would still have to deal with Universal as the American distributor, but never really says when Universal stopped having the rights to either. I wonder if the deal was for Universal's rights to eventually expire/revert to ITC (and the Henson Productions would go back to Henson following his purchase of all Henson properties that the company did). The last time I saw a broadcast of GMC with the Universal logo was in 1994 (which was also the only time I remember seeing it with the ITC logo before the Universal logo).

    It's also interesting that Universal has never released any of these movies on home video. Did Universal have its own video company when the films were first released? Did the Universal logo sequence appear on the CBS/Fox releases (I doubt they were on the Jim Henson Video releases - and I know it wasn't on the JHV release of The Dark Crystal).

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