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Jim's final works

Discussion in 'Henson People' started by mupcollector1, Jul 29, 2012.

  1. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    I wanted to open this thread just to make sure that I have the correct information or if there's some new info that I never knew about as a Jim Henson historian which I like to conciser myself. :)

    I remember for awhile I thought Muppet Vision 3D was Jim's final Muppet project but just recently I found out it was taped in January and Muppets at Walt Disney World was taped in March.

    When was the Arsanio Hall appearance in 1990. Was it in May or April?

    And was "Handmade Video" the last known footage or picture of Jim before his unfortunate passing? From what I know it was from May 7th 1990 and Jim passed in the 16th.

    Also there was a couple of projects that he came up with but where made after his passing like Dinosaurs and unmade like Muppet High (TV Series).

    Anyway, I wanted to ask about all this for historical reasons.
  2. Pinkflower7783

    Pinkflower7783 Well-Known Member

    Jim Henson appeared on Arsenio Hall on May 4, 1990. It was his last public appearance and the last time he would perform Kermit. He past away less then two weeks later.
  3. Hubert

    Hubert Well-Known Member

    If the Handmade Video was made on the date you said, it would most likely be the last thing. If it was made earlier, then there is a chance it wasn't the last. May 12 is the first date Jim got really bad, so I'm assuming that anything done on May 7 would almost have to take that spot.
  4. Pinkflower7783

    Pinkflower7783 Well-Known Member

  5. Hubert

    Hubert Well-Known Member

  6. Pinkflower7783

    Pinkflower7783 Well-Known Member

    I wasn't really talking to you but I posted the link Incase he found it helpful. According to Muppetwiki it was produced on May 7. It sounds like it was filmed on May 7.
  7. Hubert

    Hubert Well-Known Member

    Oh, OK., I didn't realize that. And also, mupcollector is a he.
  8. Pinkflower7783

    Pinkflower7783 Well-Known Member

    Fixed the he part. Lol! According to another source it was actually filmed on May 7.
  9. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    He or she is fine with me, I identify as Androgyne anyway which is a gender idenity meaning Androgynous, but I was born male so either way is fine with me. lol Though I heard xhe or something like that is the Androgyne PC way of saying it but I'm still learning the lingo so don't worry about it. lol

    Anyway I just remembered that the people magazine issue is available on their site to read for free as well as a typed version too.


    And also from the Muppet Central Archives
  10. Phillip

    Phillip Administrator Staff Member

    I believe The Witches was also in development at the time as well.
  11. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    It's really eerie to watch that Handmade Video pilot, considering it was so soon before Jim's death, and really, he doesn't seem too awful worse for wear in his intro for the pilot.
  12. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    But he does look very red in the face and pail in the footage from what I've noticed.
  13. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    Yes, I remember seeing Him was executive producer in the opening credits. Though I think it was completed by the end of 1989.

    Also in 1989 Jim was working with the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie and I guess there was a lot of conflicts behind the scenes with the producers and filmmakers against Jim and his Creature Shop because the animatronics kept braking down. According to a Kevin Clash interview that was made by ToughPigs, Jim was very happy the film succeed when he read the paper but he got a rude phone call or something with the filmmakers being nasty to him about how angry they were with the animatronics. And when the Creature Shop worked again on the sequal the producers at the begaining of the movie said "In Memory of Jim Henson" which got Jim's family upset because I heard Jim didn't really like the movie itself because he felt it was too violent for a family audience or something like that.

    And of course all the deals with Disney buying Jim Henson Productions. I've heard that in the 80s Jim and Bernie were thinking of buying Disney because I guess they weren't doing so good during that time or something.

    Though it seemed like after Jim's passing there was The Muppets Celebrate Jim Henson and that was it, everything else has basically on hold until 1991 in which the company mainly focused on Dinosaurs and then The Muppets returned with The Muppet Christmas Carol.

    Anyone heard the story of how Michael Eisner kept bugging Jim about buying the Sesame Street Muppets and it got Jim ticked off to the point that while they were at dinner with Joan Conney (Because Jim wanted her to come just to give a final no to the idea of selling the Sesame Muppets if he brought it up) So Micheal said with a smile "So how about Sesame, huh, get The Muppet family together as one" and Joan noticed Jim's face turning red with stress and Jim said bluntly to him "You see, there you go again. We said no, can we please drop it?"
    So I guess there was a little stress between them though I still wonder if Henson was owned by Disney and if the deal was finalized, what would differ from what we have today? Would Henson Alternative exist?

    Also around Jim's final years when he was interviewed and even winning awards he was becoming more strong opinionated in terms of how television and film was becoming an influence to the audience. He would mention how the medium can be used for good but it still hasn't reached it's penitential. And now people need to be aware what they are putting out there. Which I found quite interesting.
    It always seemed he was decades a head of his time. Like in Handmade Video he was predicting indie film and what became internet video today. Also in 1982, in an interview he was already not only talking about cable tv, but HD widescreen television like what we have today. AMAZING!
    I think Jim also did a magazine advert for a Japanize Color TV once in the mid late 80s too.
  14. Monstermaster

    Monstermaster Member

    I may be wrong but The Witches was probably the last movie in which he worked on (the creature effects) before his death.
  15. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    I remember reading something about Jim talking about it and letters to the author. Maybe it was Jim's Red Book on Henson.com I found that. Was that January 1990 or something like that. Because I remember Jim was involved with it quite a bit.
  16. Pinkflower7783

    Pinkflower7783 Well-Known Member

    Thats only because we know what he past away from now. Honestly he looked perfectly fine in the video to me. You probably wouldn't have thought he looked any different had you actually seen this in 1990. Cause obviously we wouldnt have known hed be gone a few days later.
  17. mupcollector1

    mupcollector1 Well-Known Member

    I've read that when he was on the Arsanio Hall show in 1990, during commercial break, Jim was couching alot and looking pail from which Arsanio Hall noticed. He was concern and asked if he was feeling okay and Jim replied "I just have a little cold, it'll go away soon."

    Though I think in terms of Jim's final works. Dinosaurs I was super impressed. From what I've heard, Jim developed the whole general idea of it being a society of Dinosaurs living like Modern American Humans and just slowly distroying their society unresponsably in every aspect. That was the first and probably only time I've seen The Jim Henson Company experimenting with Satire, well except for a few things in The Jim Henson Hour satirizing bad taste on 80s TV and film and enviroment issues like people throwing trash in the water. Just like the K.D. Lang episode "On the Road again". lol I thought that was super funny. lol

    But what made Dinosaurs so different from The Muppets was Dinosaurs had a more razor sharp satirical wit to it basicly attacking everything in disfunctional society. I tell people that Dinosaurs was the show that got me interested in the art of satire.
    Man, I can talk hours about how much I love the stuff that was on their TVs, and episodes like Potatoism and stuff.

    Also with the Henson Company being sold to Disney in 1990, before Jim passed away on the very week he was going to sign the final documents. I wonder if the Henson Alternative division would exist. I would like Disney to have that sort of devision kind of like how Warner Bros has Cartoon Network and it's [adult swim] part for mature adults.

    I remember reading Jim didn't want to be so much into the business aspect of things anymore, he wanted to be more on the creative, performing side of things and developing new stuff. I wonder if Jim was still around, would he still be doing things in his company or would he develop another one for other things? It's sad he died when I was 3. I would have loved to meet him and even hang out with him when I got into the industry. He was so amazing creative wise, business wise and even positive thinking wise. He accomplished lots of success without yelling and screaming like some people in the media biz (the stereotypical movie director, etc.).
  18. Pinkflower7783

    Pinkflower7783 Well-Known Member

    It was said he had a sore throat and was feeling tired during that appearance but felt that it would go away. But even then you would've never known otherwise. Even in that last video that was shot on May 7th he still looked and sounded fine to me. He didn't really start to feel bad, bad, till around the 12th of May.

    And yes that was also true which is why he was entering into talks with Disney at the time. But he past away before any further talks could be made.

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