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Admit what earlier today I spoke to Brian -- of the Jim Henson company.
He is carrying on the family tradition of entertaining America's children while educating them at the same -- listen to what recess.
Brian -- great to see you thanks for coming in well thanks I appreciate your being here you know one thing about the handsome vampire fight and call it that there's such as it it.
-- little and that's a name it's a little empire goes a little bit of an empire.
Is who owns what when where I mean there was it's funny because you guys at one point had the buy your name back from a German company right.
Yeah -- so we've decided to sell the -- and I think it was 99.
We had sort of two ways to -- as a company either get a lot bigger get a lot smaller.
Or sell to a much bigger company so at that point we decided to sell the company to in keeping.
Which is a real international company they very quickly.
Started do very badly and now we bought the company back -- you didn't like what they were doing with your product.
-- well wasn't so much that but they get a couple of acquisitions right after us that trying to buy.
Formula One race saying in any way that the company sort of collapsed quickly and so we bought the company backing him gambling three.
And a half four years later was a great to have the company that only at that same time it will is.
It would that they can't throwing 99 so why would by the company back with absolutely great to have the coming back but then.
Sold the classic Muppets conditioning.
Because that was always about 80% of our business -- that with the area that we needed to be bigger so now Disney.
Manages the Muppets.
And the Sesame Street characters.
In TV while they own the company sold those characters to sesame workshop the State of New York.
So now and which is all great for us and out at Sesame Street Muppets belong to Sesame Street.
And the -- show the classic Muppets are managed and and owned by Disney and that's been great for us because it allowed us to make the company considerably smaller.
And just concentrate on new.
New creations -- new television -- the new -- -- don't you miss the old guys your guys all Sesame Street and you know.
-- yes and we're also film.
Very much and mess with them we still make all the puppets.
The puppeteers are generally trained by.
So we're still.
Always in touch with Sesame Street and and and his -- with with the classic Muppets but what's nice is not to be worrying so much about the managing of those big -- is it really allows us.
The maintenance stuff -- you know I've always tried to get as high as I can in my career without becoming a manager chip -- and it it is tough isn't it.
Yeah particular threats -- creative types who are -- now my sister Lisa and I are co CEOs and and that's good so we've split the responsibilities silicon both produce and I'm also director and writer and -- now get to a lot more hands on the let's let's talk about what you're doing right now we were we were talking before we went live about.
Bill and Cora Baird who were were public -- That inspired -- because they were string puppeteers the end yeah that's what appeals -- not so much.
They hand -- stuff that we're familiar with with -- -- no I don't -- obvious thing I love him puppets tonight directed and done time for him -- caring and still -- and and and direct it's about when I was a kid and my dad was always -- about that and so we had him for the program that.
My father took me bill Baird shows it here in New York.
And I got so intrigued by the marrying deaths the level that would -- there more complex -- -- more difficult water for those who didn't know the -- they would make it looks so fluid that you really really.
You you couldn't remember that you -- looking at -- now they were very good in that.
That made me this sort of technical puppet guy in the family and gotten that got me -- that led to mean being involved with.
You motorized puppets an -- of control puppets and and computer controlled puppets and that ultimately brought us.
To where we are now where we're doing.
Digital puppets where and that that's the -- It's about to premiere on on PBS we're doing a show called Sid the science kid and it's to present.
Readiness to preschool kids three to six years -- to try to get kids excited about now.
Science at a very early age so really and puppets are always stood there's something about puppets talking to kids where they listen much more than when people try to target kids I think that's -- my most people -- even adults will listen better when it that women to puppet because they.
They're more objective.
But with this show you when you look at he won't really know that it's puppets -- -- its 3-D animation.
But it's all performed in real time by puppeteers and that's that's something we've been working on for about fifteen years the technology to enable.
-- to in real time.
Puppeteer 3-D animation for the show looks like 3-D animation.
And you but we can shoot the characters right down to their feet because it is 3-D -- nonprofit thrift that block them from the waist down.
And -- -- produce a show as if it with a three camera shoot -- with a -- in the technique of three camera issues.
And that allows us to produce a feel very very quickly and now it's 3-D animation so.
It's something that we're very proud of it's -- it's a whole new innovation and how to make television.
And to do it at the same time that we're doing our first science.
Curriculum show for PBS that's it sounds wonderful they're -- to give me Iraq you know what that's about -- I just got to ask the great thing about you have.
-- is you see the influence your father was was so heavily influential in your lives but didn't try to impose.
His views as -- as you all have your own thing that you -- who have all gone in but a different direction then sort of stayed at home the what -- what a great family thank you very much for coming they really have to get -- best of luck with your new project.
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