Friday, March 30, 2007

Fraggle Rock Season Three on DVD!

Dance your cares away, worries for another day, let the music play! Why? Because the fine folks at HIT Entertainment have said a "Fraggle Rock - Complete Third Season" DVD box set is coming! For the past 6-months I've been flooded with e-mails from readers asking if, and when, more seasons of Fraggle Rock will make their way onto DVD.

An official representative from HIT Entertainment told me earlier this week that season three is tentatively lined up for release in "Fall 2007". As, you may know, the first two seasons of Fraggle Rock sold very well (quickly becoming two of HIT's best selling DVD products). But for months now the fans have been waiting for the good news that HIT will release more subsequent seasons as well. So now you can rest easy because the third season of Fraggle Rock is coming this fall! No details on the specific disc specifications or bonus features is available yet – I was told to expect that information sometime this summer (and given the past timelines of when information surfaces, it would be likely these details won't come out until June or July).

I'll keep you all posted as soon I hear anymore on Fraggle Rock DVDs, Henson DVDs, Muppet DVDs and, of course, this highly anticipated "Fraggle Rock – Complete Third Season" set (due to hit stores in "Fall 2007").

Friday, March 23, 2007

Indonesia Launches Jalan Sesama

Sesame Workshop's "Sesame Street Indonesia" arm has revealed their plans for a localized co-production entitled Jalan Sesama.

The name, which means "street for all", was inspired by the concept of togetherness and diversity. The program, which will start filming in May 2007, will introduce Indonesian viewers to a new cast of Muppets – including Momon, Putri, Tantan and Jabrik.

Momon is a five-year-old boy who learns to draw letters and loves drawing and counting while Putri is an active young girl who is always asking Momon for help. Tantan is a female orangutan that settles many dispute and Jabrik is a baby rhino that is always complaining and laughing.

Muppeteer Marty Robinson trained the 12 Indonesian Muppeteers earlier this month in preparation for launching the new Sesame show. With an initial fund of US$1.5 million from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Jalan Sesama will debut later this year and it already contracted to run until 2010.

The program will help children learn basic cognitive skills such as literacy and mathematics while representing the vibrant diversity of Indonesia and its culture. Several scripts have already been approved by the Sesame Workshop.

Sesame Workshop has a proud history of serving the needs of children all over the world. It should be noted that this is different from the previous Boneka Sesame, which is simply American Sesame Street episodes dubbed into Indonesian. I'll keep you posted as more information and news on this, and other, international co-productions of the Sesame universe surface.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

A New Sesame Beginnings DVD

Sesame Workshop is planning to release the fourth title in their innovative Sesame Beginnings DVD series. "Sesame Beginnings: Moving Together" will be released on DVD on April 3, 2007 and will reunite viewers will all their favorite Sesame Street babies (and their caregivers).

The Sesame Beginnings series is designed to help parents and caregivers encourage their child's curiosity and interest in learning during everyday interactions. The series features baby versions of the Sesame Street Muppets along with their caregivers. "Moving Together" provides fun, engaging examples of these kinds of moments, while the various songs, activities and stories provide parents and caregivers with fresh material for interactions they can enjoy with their child throughout the day. The DVD also comes accompanied with a printed guide, offering additional parenting tips and activities to extend the learning after viewing.

"Moving Together" will join the growing Sesame Beginnings video library (which also includes "Beginning Together", "Make Music Together" and "Exploring Together") in just a few weeks; and if you are a parent or caregiver to a youngster you may want to pre-order your copy and make it a part of your video library too. More information on Sesame Beginnings (along with video clips, character bios, articles and activities) is available at the official Sesame Beginnings website. I'll keep you updated on any future Sesame Beginnings titles and productions as information surfaces.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Puppet Up! Online

As reported back in November, TBS has been planning to bring the improv puppetry and comedy of the Jim Henson Company's "Puppet Up!" to the world-wide-web with exclusive web-episodes. For months fans have been waiting for the March debut of these videos. Well, the wait is over! The first batch of "Puppet Up!" videos have hit the web via the Laugh Lab video service on

There are two fresh "Puppet Up!" sketches on the site now – one featuring a trio of perverted aliens meeting a pretty girl and another showcasing a French speaking koala that robs a sperm bank. And as if those clips aren't enough for you, TBS plans to post new sketches every Wednesday! More than 30 sketches are said to eventually be part of the series available on in the coming weeks. You can visit the official show page to access to the latest videos, show information and more (click here).

I'll keep you posted as more information this web-series and "Puppet Up!" performances surface. Also, we'd all like to give our love and support to the Henson troupe as they prepare for their big set of Australian shows later this month.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Muppet Mobile Labs is Unleashed!

After months of development the Walt Disney Imagineering team at Disney's California Adventure debuted their latest, cutting-edge creation - free-roaming, interacting audio-animatronic Muppets capable of "seeing" and "talking" to park guests.

The Muppet Mobile Labs, featuring Bunsen and Bearker is Disney's most advanced robotic creation to date. The "live" show roams the Hollywood Pictures Backlot section of Disney's California Adventure interacting with and entertaining guests of all ages.

Bruce Vaughn, vice president of Walt Disney Imagineering's research and development division said that "This is an incredibly compelling and powerful way to experience the characters. They are fully aware of the people in their presence and can call you by name. It is a 100% live experience."

In their first appearances at Disney's California Adventure this week, Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and his assistant Beaker joked and chatted with park guests. The Muppets lead songs and games, told jokes and brought merriment wherever they roamed. The duo maneuvered around in their mobile laboratory outfitted with flashing lights, spinning signs, confetti cannons and smoke and water sprayers.

During this week's initial testing phase, a team of Disney's top technicians along with Muppeteer Dave Goelz were on site and busy working behind the scenes to perfect and inspect the show. The life-live audio-animatronic puppets were based on the original puppets used for Muppets Tonight and are housed in the Muppet Mobile Lab unit which is designed in a shape and size that would make it impossible for any full-sized human puppeteers to be inside operating the characters. The entire show can be controlled by a single operator from a control booth many miles away for the actual park.

Sources say that if the response to this Californian park attraction is positive (and so far it has been), the Imagineers are looking to clone the Mobile Lab unit for the Orlando parks. I'll keep you posted as more information on the Muppet Mobile Lab emerge, but until then you can enjoy this video of the Lab in action (courtesy of the LA Times and the Walt Disney Company).