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Who owns the rights to what?

Discussion in 'Muppet Headlines' started by GelflingWaldo, Jan 29, 2005.

  1. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    In the past few years, The Jim Henson Company split their properties between different companies. Sesame Workshop, The Jim Henson Company, The Walt Disney Company, and distribution rights to HIT! Entertainment. Many people have been wondering what falls where and who got what? If there would be a DVD/VHS release, re-airing, or merchandising of the productions/properties who would have to make the call? I have worked on gathering the facts and looking up a lot of information, and have compiled a list of who has what. Many people can tell you that Disney has the Muppets, and Henson (and HIT!) have the Fraggles, and Big Bird is all Sesame Workshop. But here I try to list all the productions and where they fall. If I have missed any productions (or you think I misplaced one – which I don’t think I did) please post the productions and owners of them.
  2. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Muppet Film & Television Library
    Owned by: The Muppet Holding Company (a division of The Walt Disney Company)

    Television Series
    Little Muppet Monsters
    Muppet Babies
    Muppets Tonight
    Tales of the Tinkerdee
    The Jim Henson Hour ("Miss Piggy's Hollywood" segment)
    The Jim Henson Hour ("MuppetCentral / Intertube" segments)
    The Jim Henson Hour ("Secrets of the Muppets" Muppet segments)
    The Muppet Show

    Films and Specials
    A Muppet Family Christmas
    Hey Cinderella!
    It's A Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie
    Jim Henson's Muppet-Vision 3-D
    John Denver and The Muppets: A Christmas Together
    John Denver and The Muppets: A Rocky Mountain Holiday
    Kermit's Swamp Years
    Mr. Willoby's Christmas Tree
    Muppet Classic Theater
    Muppet Meeting Films
    Muppet Treasure Island
    Muppets From Space
    Of Muppets and Men: The Making of The Muppet Show
    The Fantastic Miss Piggy Show
    The Frog Prince
    The Great Muppet Caper
    The Muppet Christmas Carol
    The Muppet Movie
    The Muppet Musicians of Bremen
    The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence
    The Muppet Valentine Special
    The Muppets at Walt Disney World
    The Muppets Celebrate Jim Henson
    The Muppets Go Hollywood
    The Muppets Go To The Movies
    The Muppets on Puppets
    The Muppets Take Manhattan
    The Muppets' Wonderful Wizard of Oz
    The Muppets-A Celebration of 30 Years
    The Tale of the Bunny Picnic
  3. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Jim Henson Family Showcase
    Owned by: The Jim Henson Company
    Distribution Rights: HIT! Entertainment (until 2009)

    Television Series
    Animal Jam
    Construction Site
    Donna's Day
    Family Rules
    Fraggle Roc: Animated
    Fraggle Rock
    Jim Henson's Animal Show with Stinky and Jake
    Jim Henson's Dog City
    Jim Henson's Mother Goose Stories
    Mopatop's Shop
    Telling Stories with Tomie dePaola
    The Ghost of Faffner Hall
    The Hoobs
    The Jim Henson Hour ("Dog City" mini-movie)
    The Jim Henson Hour ("Living With Dinosaurs" mini-movie)
    The Jim Henson Hour ("Monster Maker" mini-movie)
    The Jim Henson Hour ("Secrets of the Muppets" non-Muppet segments)
    The Secret Life of Toys
    The Wubbolous World of Dr. Seuss

    Films and Specials
    Down at Fraggle Rock: Behind the Scenes
    Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas
    Good Boy!
    Inside the Labyrinth
    Jim Henson Presents: The World of International Puppetry
    The Christmas Toy
  4. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Jim Henson Sci-Fi & Fantasy Library
    Owned by: The Jim Henson Company

    Television Series
    Aliens in the Family
    Brats of the Lost Nebula
    Jim Henson's The Storyteller
    Jim Henson's The Storyteller - Greek Myths
    The Fearing Mind

    Films and Specials
    Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars
    Jack and the Beanstalk: The Real Story
    Mirror Mask
    The Cube
    The Dark Crystal
    The Witches
    The World of The Dark Crystal
    Time Piece
    Youth '68
  5. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Sesame Street Library
    Owned by: Sesame Workshop

    Television Series
    Sesame Street
    Play with me Sesame
    Sesame Street: Unpaved
    The Jim Henson Hour ("Sesame Street: 20 and Still Counting" Episode)

    Films and Specials
    A Special Sesame Street Christmas
    All-Star 25th Birthday: Stars and Street Forever!
    Big Bird Brings Spring to Sesame Street
    Big Bird in China
    Big Bird in Japan
    Christmas Eve on Sesame Street
    Don't Eat the Pictures: Sesame Street at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
    Elmo Saves Christmas
    Sesame Street in Puerto Rico
    Sesame Street Jam: A Musical Celebration
    Sesame Street Presents Follow that Bird
    Sesame Street Stays Up Late!
    The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland
    The Adventures of Super Grover
    The Street We Live On: A Celebration of 30 Years
  6. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Other Productions

    Bear in the Big Blue House
    Owned by: The Muppet Holding Company (a division of The Walt Disney Company)

    Owned by: Buena Vista Home Entertainment (a division of The Walt Disney Company)

    Sam and Friends
    Owned by: WRC-TV (owns productions, but the characters are not owned by WRC-TV)

    The Great Santa Claus Switch
    Owned by: Sofa Home Entertainment (The Ed Sullivan Show)
  7. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Many TV shows, specials, and films have ties to other companies as well. These productions may need to be to be cleared by the other companies before use of them can take place in distribution of the actual productions (not the characters), for example “Follow that Bird” is also tied to the producing company at Waner Bros.; “Muppets From Space” is tied to Columbia Tri-Star; and Farscape is tied to the Sci-Fi channel; there are other “strings” attached to other productions (not all have them) but none of them should hinder any progress from happening with the production(s) if the owning company wants something to happen.

    There are several specials, films or TV shows that blur the line between ownership. For example “The Christmas Toy” and “Emmet Otter’s Jugband Christmas” (both Henson owned productions) feature Kermit the Frog (a Disney owned character); although Kermit is not owned by Henson, the production is. Therefore the parts with Kermit can stay in the production without edits in future releases or airings. Likewise “A Muppet Family Christmas”, “The Muppets: A Celebration of 30 Years” and “The Muppets Celebrate Jim Henson” (which features Muppets, Henson characters, and Sesame characters) is owned by Disney and can be used uncut. The “un-owned” characters can not be licensed for merchandise (Disney can't make a Sproket doll just cause he was in "A Muppet Family Christmas"; nor can Sesame Workshop make a reporter Kermit action figure) and the non-owned characters can not be used as the “selling point” of a product (Kermit can’t be overplayed on the Emmet Otter DVD cover to “trick” people into buying the special thinking it is a Kermit/Muppet/Disney production). Disney-owned “The Muppet Movie”, which features Sesame Workshop-owned character Big Bird, does not need editing; likewise Sesame Workshop-owned “Follow that Bird”, which features Disney-owned Kermit does not need editing.

    The only production which has been chopped between companies is the television series “The Jim Henson Hour”. The Muppet segments are solely those of They Muppet Holding Company (Disney), but The Storyteller, and other mini-movies were retained by the Jim Henson Company. Also to clear up confusion, the “Dog City: Mini-movie” (which does feature Muppet character Rowlf the dog), is still owned by Henson (as is the spin-off TV show), yet the pre-movie segments from the episode (with the Muppets going to the movie, and the Bean Bunny “pre-show”) are owned by Disney. Seeing a complete re-release of “The Jim Henson Hour” (either on DVD, VHS, or TV) would require The Jim Henson Company and Disney to create a deal to split earnings, ownership, and rights; it is possible to see in the future – but is not likely. Seeing the show’s divided segments is more likely. All other Henson productions do not need to be edited for content due to the deal; but they may end up being edited for other reasons (music rights, content, time, or releaser discretion).
  8. MuppetDude

    MuppetDude Well-Known Member

    Thank you so much for making this clear. :) :D
  9. Vic Romano

    Vic Romano Well-Known Member

    Are you kidding me? I had no idea they were that splintered. I greatly appreciate the list, albeit depressing.
  10. Dantecat

    Dantecat Well-Known Member

    Actually,The street we live on was 35 years!

    By the way,

    (1)What year was the adventures of Super Grover?
    (2)How long is it?
    (3)How is it?
    (4)What channel did it first just air on?
    (5)What Super Grover skits are on there and what year were they?

    5 questions please because this special seems to be really really really interesting! ;) :excited:
  11. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Back in 1987 Grover, the loveable muppet from Sesame Street has his very own animated TV special. In the special we see the origins of Super Grover. Grover's mommy makes him a superhero costume for Halloween and as soon as he put's it on, he becomes a superhero. Smarter than a speeding bullet. More furrier than a fast locomotive. Able to eat tall sandwiches in a single bound! Grover then uses these new powers in many amazing adventures.

    My favorite of the adventures is the one where, Super Grover tried to saved Prairie Dawn from some "wild bears". It turns out she was doing a play of "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" (the bears were played by Bert, Ernie and Herry). But Grover didn't know it was a play. There were other adventures Grover encounted and wuicky changed into Super Grover and tried to save the day - from a friend's "run away" sled, to a leaking boat on a fishing trip.

    The special featured the voice talent of the actual Muppeteers and Sesame Street stars (including Frank Oz as Grover). This is such great and a memorable cartoon! If you can find it, I recommend taking a look at it - but sadly it is hard to come by these days (so happy hunting)!
  12. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Yeah, that episode is in a sticky situation. The segments talking about Fraggle Rock, DogCity, Monster Maker, or The Song of the Cloud Forest - that's all Henson's.....but the parts about MuppetCentral/Intertube, the Muppet Show, the Muppet movies, and the Muppets - that's all Disney's


    Also a few corrections/additions to the listing:
    ** Correction: "The Street We Live On: A Celebration of 30 Years" should read "The Street We Live On: A Celebration of 35 Years"; that was a typo on my part.

    **Addition: "The Jim Henson Hour ("The Song of the Cloud Forest" mini-movie)" should be added to "The Jim Henson Family Showcase"; some how I forgot about this segment and it was left off the listing.

    If you have questions about any productions not listed let me know, and I'll track down the owners.
  13. Gonzo's Goof

    Gonzo's Goof Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the list I too was wondering where everything was. Didn't Henson also have the creature shop and all? Do you know how some of the actual places got broke up?
  14. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    The creature shop is all still Henson's. Disney did not get any of that. Infact the puppets themselves are still made, maintained, stored by Henson for Sesame and Disney. The buildings, shops, studios, equiptments, ect. that Henson owned, Henson kept. When Sesame broke off the Sesame sets/studio/offices were transfered to Sesame Workshop. But Disney did not get anything like that. The physical properties pretty much were unchanged in that term. The deal with disney was more for rights and ownership of characters rather than ownership of properties.
  15. pppapazo

    pppapazo Active Member

    Do you know if Disney purchased the unaired episodes of Little Muppet Monsters?
  16. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    They are part of the Muppet Television library which Disney bought. The bought the show, unaired episodes and any production material would be included. When they got the show they got everything that goes with it (name, characters, music, episodes, ect). When they got the show the unaired episodes were included.
  17. MuppetDude

    MuppetDude Well-Known Member

    I've got it; it's a part of a video called "Five Sesame Street Stories", where Golden Books made a video version of some of their Sesame books. On this tape, four stories (the ones GelflingWaldo mentioned) are there, but there are only a few animated portions (sort of what "Reading Rainbow" does). The only Muppeteers who lent their voices for the stories were Frank Oz, Fran Brill, and Caroll Spinney. A few other voices were done by voice actors.

    There are two videos:

    Three Sesame Street Stories
    Everyone Makes Mistakes
    The City Worm and the Country Worm
    Wanted: The Great Cookie Thief

    Five Sesame Street Stories
    The Adventures of Super Grover (the four stories)
    Big Bird Brings Spring to Sesame Street
  18. BoyRaisin2

    BoyRaisin2 Well-Known Member

    Great job, GelflingWaldo! Just one thing, why is Labyrinth under the Henson Family Showcase, and not the fantasy library?
  19. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Whoops. Why didn't I catch that? I wonder what I was thinking.

    So, another correction to the listing:
    ** Correction: "Labyrinth" and "Inside the Labyrinth" should be in the Jim Henson Sci-Fi & Fantasy Library; they are NOT part of the Henson Family Showcase - at was a stupid mistake I made and did not catch when posting.
  20. GelflingWaldo

    GelflingWaldo Well-Known Member

    Also just in case anyone else is wondering...to go along with the listing of who owns what, here is a list of how to contact the people who own the stuff you love...


    Muppet Holding Company
    Mailing Address:
    The Muppet Holding Company
    1201 Grand Central Avenue
    Glendale, CA 91201

    818.549.2018 (The Muppet Holding Company Office)
    818.560-1000 (Disney Customer Service)
    debbie.mcellan@disney.com (The Muppet Press Center)
    customerservice@disney.com (Disney Customer Service)


    Jim Henson Company
    Mailing Addresses:
    The Jim Henson Company
    1416 North La Brea Avenue
    Hollywood, CA 90028

    The Jim Henson Company
    30 Oval Road
    Camden, London NW1 7DE

    323.802.1500 (Company Headquarters)
    212.794.2400 (Alternate Offices)
    Use form at http://www.henson.com/company/fanform.html


    HIT! Entertainment
    Mailing Addresses:
    HIT Entertainment
    PO BOX 9000
    Allen TX, 75002

    HIT Entertainment
    1133 Broadway
    Suite 1520
    New York, NY 10010

    HIT Entertainment
    830 South Greenville Avenue
    Allen, TX 75002

    1-866-405-7625 (Customer Service)
    1-212-463-9623 (New York Offices)
    1-972-390-6000 (Texas Offices)
    consumerservices@hitentertainment (Customer Service)
    simon.pearce@hitentertainment.com (Company Secretary)
    sforrest@hitentertainment.com (Corporate Communications)


    Sesame Workshop
    Mailing Address:
    Sesame Workshop
    1 Lincoln Plaza, 2nd Floor
    New York, NY 10023

    (212) 595-3456
    Use form at http://www.sesameworkshop.org/aboutus/inside_contact.php


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