James Maury "Jim" Henson (September 24, 1936 – May 16, 1990) was an American puppeteer, inventor, screenwriter, film director and producer, best known as the creator of The Muppets. As a puppeteer, Henson performed in various television programs, such as Sesame Street and The Muppet Show, films such as The Muppet Movie and The Great Muppet Caper, and created advanced puppets for projects like Fraggle Rock, The Dark Crystal, and Labyrinth. He was also an Academy Award-nominated film director (for his short film Time Piece), Emmy Award-winning television producer, and the founder of The Jim Henson Company, the Jim Henson Foundation, and Jim Henson's Creature Shop. Henson died on May 16, 1990, of organ failure resulting from a Group A streptococcal infection caused by Streptococcus pyogenes.
Henson was born in Greenville, Mississippi and raised in Maryland. He was educated at University of Maryland, College Park, where he created Sam and Friends as a freshman. After suffering struggles with programs that he created, he eventually found success with Sesame Street. During this time, he also contributed to Saturday Night Live. The success of Sesame Street spawned The Muppet Show, which featured Muppets created by Henson. He also co-created with Michael Jacobs the television show Dinosaurs during his final years.
The Jim Henson Company, which is an American entertainment organization, traces its origins to the founding of Muppets, Inc. in 1958 by puppeteer Jim Henson, creator of The Muppets. The Muppets helped the company gain worldwide acclaim in family entertainment for more than four decades. The company's units include Jim Henson's Creature Shop, a renowned animatronics and visual-effects workshop.
The Jim Henson Company was previously named: Uppity-Muppets Corp. (1965), Henson Associates, Inc. (1967), Jim Henson Productions, Inc. (1991-1997). As of 2011[update], Jim Henson's children Brian, Lisa, Cheryl, John and Heather run the company: Brian serves as Chairman, while Lisa serves as CEO.
Kermit the Frog is puppeteer Jim Henson's most famous Muppet creation, first introduced in 1955. He is the protagonist of many Muppet projects, most notably on The Muppet Show, and Sesame Street, as well as movies, specials, and public service announcements throughout the years. Henson originally performed Kermit until his death in May 1990; Steve Whitmire has performed Kermit since that time. He was voiced by Frank Welker in Muppet Babies and occasionally in other animation projects.
Kermit performed the hit single "Rainbow Connection" in 1979 for The Muppet Movie, the first feature-length film featuring Henson's Muppets. The song reached No. 25 on the Billboard Hot 100. Kermit's iconic look and voice have been recognizable worldwide since, and in 2006, the character was credited as the author of Before You Leap: A Frog's Eye View of Life's Greatest Lessons, which is an "autobiography" told from the perspective of the character himself.
The Muppets are a group of puppet characters known for an absurdist, burlesque and self-referential style of variety-sketch comedy. Created in 1955 by Jim Henson, they are now the namesake for the Disney media franchise that encompasses films, television series, music recordings, print publications, and other media associated with The Muppet Show characters.
Henson once stated that the term "Muppet" had been created as a portmanteau of the words "marionette" and "puppet", but also claimed that it was actually a word he had coined. The Muppets debuted on the television program Sam and Friends, which aired locally on WRC-TV in Washington, D.C. from 1955 to 1961. After appearing on skits in several late night talk shows and advertising commercials during the 1960s, Henson's Muppets began appearing on Sesame Street when that show debuted in 1969. The Muppets then became the stars of multiple television series and films, including; The Muppet Show (1976–1981), The Muppet Movie (1979), The Great Muppet Caper (1981), The Muppets Take Manhattan (1984), and The Jim Henson Hour (1989). After Henson's death in 1990, The Muppets continued their presence in television and cinema with Muppets Tonight (1996–1998), a series continuation of The Muppet Show, and three films, The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992), Muppet Treasure Island (1996), Muppets from Space (1999), the former two were co-produced with Disney, who sought to acquire the characters since the late 1980s. In 2004, The Walt Disney Company purchased the rights to The Muppets (except for the Sesame Street characters, which were sold separately to Sesame Workshop), and later formed The Muppets Studio, a division created specifically for managing The Muppets franchise.
Dave Goelz (born July 16, 1946) is a puppeteer best known for his association with The Muppets, and in particular with the Muppet character The Great Gonzo. His other Muppet characters include Bunsen Honeydew, Zoot (the saxophonist of Dr. Teeth and The Electric Mayhem), Beauregard the stagehand and Tiny (the giant chicken in The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland) . He also performed the characters of Boober Fraggle and Uncle Travelling Matt on Fraggle Rock. He also performed the puppetry for various characters, including Sir Didymus and Wiseman's Hat (both voiced by David Shaughnessy) in Labyrinth. Outside of puppeteering, he is the current voice actor for the Disney character Figment. After Jim Henson died in 1990, Goelz took over puppeteering Waldorf in 1992.
The Muppet Movie is a 1979 American musical comedy film and the first of a series of live-action feature films starring Jim Henson's Muppets. Directed by James Frawley, the film's screenplay was written by The Muppet Show writers Jerry Juhl and Jack Burns.
Produced by Henson Associates between the third and fourth seasons of The Muppet Show, The Muppet Movie depicts Kermit the Frog as he embarks on a cross-country trip to Hollywood. Along the way, he encounters several of the Muppets— who all share his ambition of finding success in professional show business— while being pursued by a relentless restaurateur with intentions of employing Kermit as a spokesperson for his frog legs business.
Entertainment is a form of activity that holds the attention and interest of an audience, or gives pleasure and delight. It can be an idea or a task, but is more likely to be one of the activities or events that have developed over thousands of years specifically for the purpose of keeping an audience's attention. Although people's attention is held by different things, because individuals have different preferences in entertainment, most forms are recognisable and familiar. Storytelling, music, drama, dance, and different kinds of performance exist in all cultures, were supported in royal courts, developed into sophisticated forms and over time became available to all citizens. The process has been accelerated in modern times by an entertainment industry which records and sells entertainment products. Entertainment evolves and can be adapted to suit any scale, ranging from an individual who chooses a private entertainment from a now enormous array of pre-recorded products; to a banquet adapted for two; to any size or type of party, with appropriate music and dance; to performances intended for thousands; and even for a global audience.
The experience of being entertained has come to be strongly associated with amusement, so that one common understanding of the idea is fun and laughter, although many entertainments have a serious purpose. This may be the case in the various forms of ceremony, celebration, religious festival, or satire for example. Hence, there is the possibility that what appears as entertainment may also be a means of achieving insight or intellectual growth.
In journalism, a human interest story is a feature story that discusses a person or people in an emotional way. It presents people and their problems, concerns, or achievements in a way that brings about interest, sympathy or motivation in the reader or viewer.
Human interest stories may be "the story behind the story" about an event, organization, or otherwise faceless historical happening, such as about the life of an individual soldier during wartime, an interview with a survivor of a natural disaster, a random act of kindness or profile of someone known for a career achievement.
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New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous urban agglomerations in the world. The city is referred to as New York City or the City of New York to distinguish it from the State of New York, of which it is a part. A global power city, New York exerts a significant impact upon commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and entertainment. The home of the United Nations Headquarters, New York is an important center for international diplomacy and has been described as the cultural capital of the world.