Jim Henson's Amazing Life

The one who created TV Shows!

Who He Was!

Jim Henson.Come on, don't you know Jim Henson! He created the Muppet's, Sesame Street, Meet the Fraggles, and Sam and Friends!!! Now do you remember Him? Great you should! He totally rocked! He voiced Kermit for a while, and all that cool stuff! The truth is he actually din't think that he would be a puppeteer! He thought that he would have a normal job.

Fun Facts

1) Rowlf was originally made for a dog food commercial.

2) Kermit was in three shows, The muppets, Sam and friends, and sesame street!

3) Jim was in a puppet club when he was a teenager.

4) Jim had a favorite tv program called Kukla, Fran, and Ollie. (Kukla and Ollie were puppets.)

5) Jim studied acting and art in college.

6) In 1955 Jim got a puppeteering job opportunity where he would perform late at night.

Sesame Street: Cookie Monster Sings C is for Cookie

Jim's Puppet facts

1) Kermit was originally made of Jim's mom's raincoat and ping pong balls.

2) Mrs piggy's first appearance was not on the muppet show or a muppet movie. Her first appearance was on the Herb Alpert show!

3) Jim's original version of cookie monster was green and had no teeth.

4) The story of Elmo says that an extra red puppet was just lying around behind the scenes at Sesame Street. In 1984, puppeteer Kevin Clash picked up the red puppet and started doing the voice and the personality and Elmo was

eventually launched into the lead role.

5) Count von Count made his first appearance in 1972 and was made out of an ”Anything Muppet” pattern, a blank Muppet head that could have features added to it to make various characters.

6) Rowlf the Dog was first made in 1962 for a series of Purina Dog show commercials. He went on to claim fame as Jimmy Dean’s sidekick on The Jimmy Dean Show and was on every single episode from 1963 to 1965.

7) Oscar the Grouch is performed by the same puppeteer who does Big Bird, Caroll Spinney. Spinney said he based Oscar’s cranky voice on a particular New York cab driver with which he once had the pleasure of riding. Oscar was originally an alarming shade of orange.

8) Nobody knows what Gonzo the Great is supposed to be. Even Henson had no particular species in mind, though he once said that Gonzo was a cross between a turkey and a pencil sharpener.

9) Statler and Waldorf were designed by Bonnie Erickson, a member of the original design team for The Muppet Show. She imagined them as two old guys passing the time in a stuffy university club.

10) Fozzie Bear’s name is generally considered an homage to Faz Fazakas, an electro-mechanical wizard who designed many of the innovations which enable the Muppets to be more realistically animated. Fazakas created the ear mechanism which permits Fozzie to wiggle his ears. Additionally, Frank Oz contends that Fozzie’s name is a play more on the fuzzy nature of a bear. So although it might seem that Fozzie is named for his performer, his name has a different origin.

11) Many people think Bert and Ernie were named for some minor characters in It’s a Wonderful Life, but the names are just a coincidence. Frank Oz was Bert’s puppeteer and hated him at the beginning because he was so boring, but then Oz realized that he could have a lot of fun with Bert being boring.

12) Before Grover went on Sesame Street, he made his TV debut on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1967. At the time, he was known as “Gleep” and was a monster in Santa’s Workshop. In Latin America and Puerto Rico Grover is known as Archibaldo, in Spain he is Coco, in Portugal he is Gualter, and in Norway he is Gunnar.

13) Rizzo the Rat is named for Dustin Hoffman’s character, Ratso Rizzo in Midnight Cowboy. He was created after puppeteer Steve Whitmire was inspired by rat puppets left over from The Muppet Musicians of Bremen. Rizzo occasionally performs with Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem. (Animals band)

14) Pepe the King Prawn’s full name is Pepino Rodrigo Serrano Gonzales. Apparently, he was a chef in Spain before debuting on Muppets Tonight in 1996. Pepe rarely gets names right: He calls Muppets, muffins Kermit, Kermin

and Scooter, Scooper.

How Jim Got Into Puppets

Nothing inspired Jim Henson to be a puppeteer. All Jim wanted was a job in the summer when he was a teen. His first three puppets were Longhorn and Shorthorn who were cowboys, and a french rat named Pierre. And he made these with a friend! Kermit was actually named after Jim's friend, Theodore Kermit Scott. And he joined a puppeteering club in highschool!

Did you know that.......

1) Jims best subject was art!

2) Jim was very outgoing and friendly!

3) Jim's wife helped Jim out with every single one of his T.V. shows and movies!( Jane Henson! )

4) He caught turtles and Frogs as pets when he was young!

5) The Muppet's had themed specials!

6) Kermit was actually named after Jim's friend, Theodore Kermit Scott.

The Muppets Show Theme Song