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Who owns the SNL Muppets?

Discussion in 'Family Worlds' started by minor muppetz, Jun 28, 2005.

  1. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    are the rights to the Muppets from saturday Nigth Live still owned by the jim henson company, or are they owned by Disney? I know that NBC owns the rights to the show, but which company gets residuals when the land of gortch skits are shown? which company would be allowed to include those characters in a new production?

    I would think that the Jim Henson Company still owns them. after all, with the exception of food (from the christmas party skit), none of these characters were used in any other henson production. No muppet show, no muppet movies, no mopatops shop. However, during the openign credits, they are referred to as "jim hensons muppets". They were also called "muppets" on-screen in many episodes, such as in the one where scred and the mighty fuvog talk to chevy chase, or in the one with anthony perkins, or in their last appearance. however, I think that Jim henson considered all of his creations to be muppets.

    While the credits refferred to jim as muppets, the credits for Sesame Street and Fraggle Rock also refferred to the cast as muppets, and those characters are not owned by Disney. The DVD releases of fraggle Rock change the logo and remove the "Jim Hensons Muppets" credit. However, the Muppets name is still used in various Sesame Street products, although they are not called muppets in the credits of the current shows. There is usually a copyright credit for the use of the muppets name whenever it is used. This copyright credit is used on the packaging for various Sesame Street DVDs.

    Anyway, who owns the land of Gortch Muppets?
  2. MrsPepper

    MrsPepper Active Member

    Well, Disney doesn't own them. Disney owns the Muppet franchise, as in The Muppet Show and the Muppet movie characters. Although Fraggles and Sesame Street characters, as well as Gorch characters are referred to as Muppets, they're a different group. Sorry, this is as well as I can explain it.
    On the Henson.com website, it has a list of all the Muppet productions that Disney owns, so you can have a better idea of what I mean. The Gorch segments are not included. I'm pretty sure the JHC owns the rights to those sketches, but I'm not sure.
    Here is the list of what Disney owns: http://henson.com/entertainment/muppets.html
  3. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    there are some productions missing from that list that disney does own, like tales of the tinkerdee, land of tinkerdee, hey cinderella, the frog prince and mr. willobys christmas tree.
  4. MrsPepper

    MrsPepper Active Member

    Why would Disney own Mr. Willowby's Christmas tree? Technically it's not a Muppet production. Sure, it's got Kermit as bookends (hee, I lovingly borrow that term from ToughPigs) but so does Emmet Otter, and that is still owned by the JHC.

    Anyhoo, the whole point of the list was to demonstrate that Disney owns Kermit's pack of Muppets, not all JHC productions. There is no reason for Disney to buy the Gorch segments, as they're obscure, unpopular, and most of the time cut from the old SNL repeats anyway. There's no incentive there.
  5. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    well, when Disney first bought the muppets, there was a report on the main page of Toughpigs.com which listed what Disney does own, and Mr. willobys christmas tree was listed.

    The Jim Henson Hour and little muppet monsters weren't listed in the press release either.
  6. MrsPepper

    MrsPepper Active Member

    I doubt the Jim Henson hour is owned by Disney, since they don't own the Storyteller.

    Anyway, back to the topic at hand, I still see no reason for Disney to own the Gorch segments.

    And really, you shouldn't shoot down help after you've asked for it. Once other people find your post, a nice conversation will escalate, and the facts will sort itself out.
  7. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    I have heard that Disney owns the muppet-related portions of the Jim henson Hour, such as all of the Muppetelevision segments, Miss Piggys Hollywood, the pre-show segments of Dog City, and most of the Secrets of the Muppets (the scens without muppets, such as the trip to the creature shop, are owned by The Jim Henson Hour). I have read that The Jim Henson Hour is the only henson production where the distribution rights are split up between companies.

    I have seen a thread at this message board (I don't remember which section, but I think it is under Muppet Headlines) that lists what companies own which henson production.

    I am not sure what you mean by shoot down help. I hope it doesn't mean anything bad. I believe that my original question was answered, but my answers have lead to more information.
  8. BoyRaisin2

    BoyRaisin2 Active Member

  9. MrsPepper

    MrsPepper Active Member

    No nothing bad, it means the same as dismissing. I was just misintrepreting your replies, is all. :p
  10. fivefingers

    fivefingers New Member

  11. superboober

    superboober Member

    I doubt the Walt Disney Company would want to bring onboard the wild and crazy Gorch guys anyway; too much image headache, if you know what I mean.

    Still, you do have wonder, why take only Tale of the Bunny Picnic, the only holiday special that wouldn't have caused an editing crisis no matter where it went, and leave the more popular (and challenging to handle in rights divisions) Emmett Otter and Christmas Toy behind? Like all else in corporate America, it makes little to any sense. Too bad we couldn't have gotten inside those negotiating rooms and heard exactly what was said. But if any of us are interested in the ENTIRE pacakge and are able to put down about $4 billion right away, maybe we the fans could by the whole thing and put these problems to rest once and for all. Just a thought...
  12. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    Actually, Disney owns Bean Bunny, who starred in Tales of the Bunny Picnic. Kermit only made a few small cameos in Emmett Otter and The Christmas Toy, and no other major Disney-owned Muppet characters appeared in those specials. Also, Henson probably got to keep The Christmas Toy because Hensons till owns The Secret Life of Toys, which was a follow-up series to that special.


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