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Jim Henson's Red Book

dwmckim

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Guilty Confession Time

Okay, i'm one of the biggest Henson Geeks in the universe - you know the type that was practically born to be a Henson historian. The kind of trivia in this type of project is stuff i live for. And i've long wanted to have Jim's journals published in some manner for ages.

...but i'm actually getting very bored with this very quickly...

I think it's because all the entries are just too random, especially considering their pithiness.

Maybe if this was more of a teaser to some kind of publication of them in their entirety, i'd be more excited, but seeing random entries in this context just doesn't "do anything" for me. The last few times i checked the page, it seemed more of a habit or chore that i "had to do" rather than going there with any kind of excitement.

Personally, i'd MUCH rather see these in some kind of more logical order...that way we can see them in a better historical context and really feel more connected to the progression of his life. Allow these to "tell a story" instead of small flashes coming from anywhere. That really is the best way to present these. The most obvious choice would be to start at the very beginning and go through chronologically. We can follow his career through the humble beginnings and trace his successes and setbacks - see the times that were a tad slower and those when he was juggling so many irons in the fire. Or if it was thought by someone that not enough people may not be as interested in the earlier years and would be too impatient to get to when he was a household name (though i don't see this as being a view held by many), you could start with a later year and go through that year's entries chronologically, then when done go to a different year etc. Then the reader gets a sense of history/story/progression even if the years presented were more random - and then they can be better pieced together at the end.

So whether it happens via the blog or some other method, these really need to be presented in a different manner to have the most value to its target audience.
 

zns

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The latest entry says that Jim gets new glasses. Did he actually wear them? I wonder if there are any photos of him wearing them.
 

dwmckim

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Okay, Jim's Red Book has been fun but now what i'm REALLY hungry to see is...

Red's Jim Book

...you know the one where Red Fraggle writes down her observations of this weird bearded silly creature that occasionally shows up under things.
 

minor muppetz

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The website had an interesting entry on The Witches: http://www.henson.com/jimsredbook/2010/11/19/11191988/

I never knew that Jim Henson himself had pitched the movie. I would have thoguth somebody else pitched the idea to adapt The Witches into a feature, and that Jim Henson's Creature Shop was asked to make the creatures, and then either Jim asked to be executive producer or was offered the job.

It's interesting that the film seems to have been completed in 1988, but wasn't released until after Jim Henson died, two years after compeltion.

I wonder if the alternate ending still exists. I was sort of expecting to see a YouTube clip but didn't (it seems like the redbook often adds youtube clips during entries with historical context, and especially common for the clips to have just been added by Henson when the entries are added).
 

minor muppetz

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Today the site has detailed information on the 1971 appearance on The Dick Cavett Show, including scans of a script rundown which notes stuff that was planned but cut for time.

I don't think any of us fans have video footage from this, but I know somebody recorded the audio from it when it aired, and the audio was posted on The MuppetCast a couple of years ago. I assume the recording was the entire episode, yet the script run-trhough lists a few things that I don't remember (and the rundown doesn't appear to note them being cut). It notes a few Henson SST films being included, for 3, 8, and 11... I don't remember hearing Henson #8 or Eleven Cheer in that podcast episode. Am I misremembering or were they cut but not noted?
 

zns

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Today the site has detailed information on the 1971 appearance on The Dick Cavett Show, including scans of a script rundown which notes stuff that was planned but cut for time.

I don't think any of us fans have video footage from this, but I know somebody recorded the audio from it when it aired, and the audio was posted on The MuppetCast a couple of years ago. I assume the recording was the entire episode, yet the script run-trhough lists a few things that I don't remember (and the rundown doesn't appear to note them being cut). It notes a few Henson SST films being included, for 3, 8, and 11... I don't remember hearing Henson #8 or Eleven Cheer in that podcast episode. Am I misremembering or were they cut but not noted?
Does anyone know how to email Henson to see if there is a way to get video footage? This is definitely a Muppet appearance that should be shared with everyone, along with the Mike Douglas appearances from 1966.
 

minor muppetz

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Yesterday info on the Muppet String Quartet sketch was posted.

http://www.henson.com/jimsredbook/2011/01/17/1171971-ed-sullivan-show-–-string-quartet/

It includes a number of things I didn't know. For example, I didn't know if was based on an earlier Muppet sketch. And I didn't know that the two violinists actually had names (Twill, the leader, and Harrison, the blue guy performed by Richard Hunt).

The script for the early one features a character I've never heard of, Theodore. It also mentions a Mildred, but probably not Mildred Huxtedder. It's interesting how in the script for the Ed Sullivan Show appearance, at the beginning when describing the set-up it doesn't refer to any names, but then the names appear in dialogue.

Considering that the script referred to Mahna Mahna as "Harry", I wonder if they originally had that character in mind, or if they intended on building an original character or reusing anybody.

EDIT: I can't help but notice that neither script includes a writers credit. I would have thought most professional scripts list who the writer is.
 

dwmckim

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If i'm not mistaken, Theodore was an alternate name for Chicken Liver.

Yeah, writers' names usually appear on scripts for longer things like films or television show episodes, but for something like the S&F sketch and Ed Sullivan appearance, given that it's a less-than-five-minute routine and a very small team of people working on it, there's no need to put the writer's name on it...everyone there knows who wrote it! Plus the main need for the script would be so the Muppeteers can refer to the lines as they perform it so why take up unneeded space on the paper with an author credit?
 

minor muppetz

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Some good info on the parachute sequence from The Great Muppet Caper. http://www.henson.com/jimsredbook/2011/01/21/1211981/

Though I do see some sad things about it. Looking at the list of Muppets as options to use as costumes or oversized dummies, Lips is not listed (but neither are Lew Zeland or Sam the Eagle). But interestingly enough it lists Oscar as being one of the characters to have been thrown out of the airplane (a dummy for the trash can was to have been thrown). I can't tell but I think Kermit might have been considered to have been thrown seperately from Miss Piggy.

Looking at the storyboard, it's hard to tell which characters are in the background of those drawings.
 
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