Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Kermit's Current Car Campaign

Kermit the Frog will appear in a new marketing campaign for the Ford Escape Hybrid that will debut during the second quarter of Super Bowl XL on February 5, 2006. In the 30-second commercial, Kermit will encounter the Escape Hybrid while exploring the great outdoors.

“There’s no better judge of what’s green than Kermit the frog,” said Cisco Codina, Group Vice President, North America Marketing, Sales and Service. “Ford is the hybrid leader among American car companies, and we’re going to use platforms like the Super Bowl to make sure people understand that our commitment to design, safety and technology innovation is real – and on the market today. Kermit makes that message accessible to multiple generations of people all over the world.”

The Super Bowl commercial will be used to kick off an even bigger ad campaign featuring Kermit. The campaign will consists of television, print, digital and outdoor advertising. Ford Escape Hybrid ads featuring Kermit will appear throughout the year on TV, and print ads will appear in influential automotive-enthusiast magazines, business publications, and newsweeklies. Digital advertising will appear on many popular websites.

“Ford and Kermit are a match made in heaven; they’re both American icons, both family-oriented and they’re both green,” said George S. Rogers, President and CEO. “Kermit the Frog is an absolute celebrity and we’re thrilled to have him on board to tell the Escape Hybrid story.”

Also remember that on "Super Bowl Sunday" Miss Piggy will appear with Jessica Simpson in an
all-new Pizza Hut commercial as well.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Fraggle Rock Season 2 on DVD!

Dance your cares away, worries for another day, let the music play! Why? Because the good folks at HIT Entertainment have officially stated that "Fraggle Rock - Complete Second Season" DVD box set is officially coming! Not only that, but they know when too. The tentatively scheduled release date for the box set is September 5, 2006. As, you may know, the first season of Fraggle Rock was released last September after nine months of hard work. When the set hit store shelves in Septemebr 2005 it sold very well (quickly becoming one of HIT's top selling DVD products of all time). But for months now the fans have been waiting for the good news that HIT will release the subsequent seasons as well.

Dave Goelz confirmed at a Henson/Fraggle event this past weekend that The Jim Henson Company has begun scanning the archives for bonus material for the second season box set. Phillip Chapman, webmaster of Muppet Central, broke this great news earlier today - you can read his full article here.

HIT has the distribution rights to Fraggle Rock until 2009 (and they may end up extending their contract with Henson past that), so even at the rate of one season set per year (which is just as fast, or faster, than many TV shows coming to DVD in deluxe box sets) they could still get the whole show out before their time is up, by the end of 2008 or 2009 (depending on if they combine the much smaller fourth and fifth seasons into one set).

Also on a somewhat related note, the "Fraggle Rock Complete Second Season" set is the only Fraggle Rock DVD release that HIT is planning for the rest of the year (as of now). Since 2004, HIT has been releasing single-disc DVD’s with select episodes from the show every 3-4 months. Five of these smaller releases have been produced, but now HIT is taking a break from the smaller and casual DVDs. I'll keep you all posted as soon I hear anymore on Fraggle Rock DVDs, Henson DVD, Muppet DVD and, of course, this highly anticipated Fraggle Rock Season 2 set.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The Muppets, Jessica, Pizza Hut, and Football…again.

Piggy in the 2005 Muppet/Pizza Hut adThe Muppets will once again team up with Pizza Hut and Jessica Simpson in an all new super-bowl commercial. Miss Piggy and Miss Simpson will reportedly appear in the new Pizza Hut ad to be broadcast during Super Bowl XL, which airs Sunday February 5, 2006 on ABC. The big game is expected to draw about 90 million viewers, and Super Bowl ads cost an estimated $2.5 million for a 30-second spot this year. Pizza Hut is once again showcasing the Muppets, who won over viewers the past two years.

"The Muppets bring a wink and a smile to it," said Tom James, chief marketing officer for Pizza Hut. "It's pizza after all ... It's about fun and enjoyment."

The Muppets with Jessica Simpson in a 2004 Super Bowl ad promoting the four-for-all pizza from Pizza Hut. In 2005, the Muppets appeared (Simpson-less) in a Super Bowl spot to push the new Pizza Hut Dippin' Strips. So keep your eyes out for the brand-new Muppet add this year; and I'll keep you posted if any more information surfaces on the subject.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

A New Blogger in Town

A little friend of mine, named Matt, has started his own little blog, and I suggest you check it out. This little explorer has jumped on the technology band-wagon and started writing cool stuff on an ongoing basis and posting it to the world-wide-web for his nephew (and the world) to see. Like most blogs, new posts shows up all the time and the posts can be very entertaining and informative. You may wonder what this blog has to do with the Muppets or Jim Henson and why I posted about it here, well surf on over and you'll understand. Check out the blog simply by clicking here. Enjoy!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Dinosaurs DVD Set Details

box artDisney has officaly announced the release and details of "Dinosaurs: The Complete First & Second Seasons" DVD box set today. As reported yesterday, the 4-disc DVD set will hold all the episodes of the first two seasons. But along with the 29 episodes, the set will include some newly created bonus features.

The first bonus feature, titled "Pre-Hysterical Times: The Making of Dinosaurs", will give a never-before-seen look at how Jim Henson's Creature Shop brought "Dinosaurs" to life. The featurette includes a inside look at the creation and development of the show. The second bonus feature is titled "The Art Of Dinosaurs". In this featurette, Kirk Thatcher (the show's character designer) will take viewers through the original designs for the show and talk about the look of the Dinosaurs' world. The last special feature called "Dino-Eggs" are scattered throughout the set, and are hidden "Easter eggs" of special bonus clips, trivia facts, and all kinds of other goodies.

Disney also has released some technical details of the set. The DVD will hold enhanced Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo Sound, both English and French audio tracks, interactive menus, and the proper 1:33:1 aspect ratio. The 4-disc set will boast a suggested retail price of $39.99 and will be in stores everywhere on May 2, 2006. I'll keep you posted if any more develops on this highly anticipated pre-historic DVD release.

From the Balcony: Episode 16

A new episode of "Statler and Waldorf: From the Balcony" was posted on Movies.com today. In the latest installment of the bi-weekly web-show, Lester the possum heads to the streets to see what people think, plus you can learn the meaning of this weeks balconism, "WIN-jury". So check out the "From the Balcony" website on Movies.com and watch the latest episode.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Dinosaurs' First and Second Seasons on DVD in May

As reported last month, Dinosaurs is coming to DVD sometime this year - and now we know when. The good folks at UltimateDisney.com (a dependable Disney-DVD fan site), have reported that the show will make its DVD debut in a 4-disc set titled "Dinosaurs: The Complete First & Second Seasons" on May 2, 2006. The set will hold the first 29 episodes of series. Bonus features, if any, are unknown at this time. As usual, this date and title could be subject to change until the official press release comes out, but if they hold up (which is expected), Disney should be formally announcing the release very soon. I'll keep you all posted.

1. The Mighty Megalosaurus
2. The Mating Dance
3. Hurling Day
4. High Noon
5. The Howling
6. The Golden Child
7. Family Challenge
8. I Never Ate for My Father
9. Charlene's Tale
10. Endangered Species
11. Employee of the Month
12. When Food Goes Bad
13. Career Opportunities
14. Unmarried ... With Children
15. How to Pick Up Girls
16. Switched At Birth
17. Refrigerator Day
18. What "Sexual Harris" Meant
19. Fran Live
20. Power Erupts
21. The Clip Show
22. A New Leaf
23. The Last Temptation of Ethel
24. Nuts To War (part 1)
25. Nuts to War (part 2)
26. And The Winner Is...
27. Slave to Fashion
28. Leader of the Pack
29. WESAYSO Knows Best

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Academy Honors Caroll Spinney

The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences officially announced today that Caroll Spinney (Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on Sesame Street) will receive of this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award at the 33rd Annual Daytime Emmy Awards. Spinney was chosen for his work entertaining and educating children since Sesame Street debut in 1969. Caroll have performed seen on more than 4,000 episodes, as well as countless television specials, films, guest spots, and live performances. His work on Sesame Street has garnered him four Emmy Awards.

"Caroll Spinney has distinguished himself in entertaining and inspiring generations of children worldwide in his dual roles as the sweet and compassionate Big Bird and the distinctively different Oscar the Grouch," said Peter Price, President, National Television Academy. "The Academy is proud to honor the man who has dedicated his career to creating and sustaining for four decades two of the most-loved and respected children’s television characters."

"I am elated and amazed to receive this honor from those who are committed to the best of what television and media have to offer, for doing what I’ve always wanted to do," said Caroll.

Spinney will be presented the award during the 33rd Annual Daytime Emmy Awards ceremony on Friday, April 28, 2006 broadcast live (8:00-11:00 PM, ET) on ABC.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

New Muppet Stuff on DisneyShopping.com

Kermit Snow GlobeDisneyShopping.com, the official Disney Online Store, has updated their Muppets section with a new batch of new items – several celebrating Kermit's 50th anniversary. There are all kinds of new items added to their growing collection of merchandise available.

For the collectors out there, they have a beautiful Kermit 50th Anniversary Snow-Globe (item #95901). The globe's oil and water mix creates a realistic ''pond'' inside as Kermit actually strums his banjo to ''Rainbow Connection.'' There is also a new Kermit Anniversary ''Thinker'' Figurine (item #95900), which is a limited Muppetized remake of the famous Rodin sculpture. Fans can also collect a stunning Kermit Anniversary wrist watch (item #57542). Lastly, there is a brand-new Kermit & Miss Piggy Raglan Romance Tee-Shirt (item #57550).

So, what are you waiting for? Go take a look at "The Muppet Shop" at DisneyShopping.com, there are some great new things to check out; and most of the older stuff is still there too (and some of it is on sale). So surf on over today and shop away!

Friday, January 13, 2006

MirrorMask on DVD

Dave McKean and Neil Gaiman's film MirrorMask, the Jim Henson Company's latest fantasy world production, will finally arrive on DVD on February 7, 2006. MirrorMask debuted in a very limited theatrical run starting on September 30, 2005 and Gaiman and Henson fans have been waiting for this much anticipated DVD for some time.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has announced the complete list of features and bonus materials for the sci-fi fantasy adventure's DVD treatment. The film will be presented in its proper 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen format, along with multiple Dolby Digital surround audio tracks. The movie will also be released in the UMD format for the PSP concurrent with the DVD's release. The disc is already up for pre-orders at many online stores (such as Amazon.com), and should appear at most major DVD retailers on February 7th.

DVD Cover
Technical Features
- 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
- Audio Tracks: English, French, Portuguese and Thai
- Subtitles: English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Thai, and Korean

Bonus Material
- Audio commentary with Director/Writer Dave McKean
- A Conversation with Neil Gaiman
- Behind The Scenes with Dave McKean
- Beginnings Featurette
- Cast & Crew Featurette
- Day 16 (Time-Lapse Video of One Day On-Set)
- Flight of the Monkeybirds Featurette
- Giants Development Featurette
- ComicCon 2003 Questions & Answers Session

Sunday, January 08, 2006

"Down in Fraggle Rock" Features

Information on the next single disc release of Fraggle Rock have surfaced. Below are the details and episodes of the "Down In Fraggle Rock" DVD (and VHS) that will hit stores on January 17, 2006 . This release follows the form that the first four single-disc releases HIT has given Fraggle Rock. No cover art has been released yet.

Boober's Dream (Season 2) - Boober's fun side (his Sidebottom) wants to play!

Wembley's Egg
(Season 2) - Wembley tries to take care of a baby Tree Creature when its egg falls down the well and into the Fraggle Pond.

Red' Blue Dragon
(Season 4) - Red goes through a tunnel in the T. Matthew Fraggle Room and finds a blue dragon. Episode on DVD release only (not VHS).

DVD Bonus Features:
Animated Episode: Gobo's Song and Wembley and the Bemble
Behind the Scenes: Uncle Traveling Matt
Fraggle Challenge! (unlocks a bonus episode)
Pingu Episode: Pingu and the Doorbell

HIT has yet to publicly commit to a second season box set of the show at this time, however anything is possible. As always, I will keep you updated on any Fraggle DVD news.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

From the Balcony: Episode 15

A new episode of "Statler and Waldorf: From the Balcony" was posted on Movies.com today. In the latest installment of the bi-weekly web-show, Statler and Waldorf show off the international versions of their web show, plus you can learn the meaning of this weeks balconism, "Fluctu-WEIGHT". So check out the "From the Balcony" website on Movies.com and watch the latest episode. And be sure to check back for the next episode on January 21st .