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Talk:John Henson

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This article could use some expansion on his other puppetry work. Perhaps some re-writing as well. Also, I'd like to find a source for when he started performing Sweetums (see below). And there's no information on what he did for City Kids. Finally, I can't cite a source for the sculpture, but I know that he's something of a professional craftsman and thought that could be better illustrated that just pointing out the balloon ride he made for the townhouse. Two other contributors can vouch for the information, and hopefully clean up my wording some. — Scott (talk) 06:19, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

Well, while not definitive as to when he *started* playing Sweetums, it gives us a better range. From an October 25, 1987 Washington Post interview with Jim: "John, the second youngest, does some work with us in New York, performing some of the big characters we do, such as Sweet-ums." -- Andrew Leal (talk) 06:28, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
Oh, and according to the Westchester Weekly desk, John Henson also played Sweetums at a 1992 musical tribute to Jim at Lincoln Center in Armonk, Westechester, NY. And apparently he played the Coca-Cola bear at the Olympics in 1998, though I don't know what, if any, connection Henson Company/Creature Shop had with that as a whole. --- Andrew Leal (talk) 06:32, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

MV3D

Is that correct about John doing Sweetums' voice in MV3D? — Scott (talk) 04:56, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

That looks like it was copied from IMDb. It is possible that John Henson may have operated the Sweetums body puppet in the filmed footage (in a 1989 interview about The StoryTeller, Jim Henson says John is already sometimes playing Sweetums and other large characters). There may be a way to get a source on that. But the voice is clearly Richard Hunt. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 05:11, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
muppetcentral.com lists John as Sweetums' performer from 1989 on, but this could be the same misinformation. — Scott (talk) 05:23, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
Jim Henson: The Works verifies that he performed Sweetums with this quote: "For the 3-D illusion to work, the paddleball had to hit precisely the right spot during shooting. John Henson had practiced hitting the ball correctly for days. But when he got into the Sweetums costume, which almost totally restricted his vision, he was completely unable to see the spot! Luckily, he hit it on the first take." -- Mary Catherine (talk) 14:56, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
It verifies that he was in the suit (and it's great to have that). But not that it's his voice. It sounds too much like Richard Hunt to me, implying that, especially since Sweetums is fairly significant, he looped the vocals. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 14:59, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, that's what I meant -- that it proved he was in the puppet. D'oh! Anyway, I can keep hunting around (pun intended) for a source on the voice, if you think we need definite proof that it's Richard. -- Mary Catherine (talk) 18:14, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
Personally, I don't think we do, unless a trusted contributor implies it is John Henson. I was at the attraction this summer, and I downloaded the file when the whole soundtrack was at Tough Pigs forum. I won't swear to whether Beaker was Richard or not, but Sweetums, indubitably. Still, I think we can now start constructing a time frame of sorts. 1987, first public mention of John Henson as Sweetums; 1990, performs in Muppet*Vision 3-D; 1992, appears at tributes and other events; 1996, first screen credit for the role in Muppet Treasure Island, etc. And I'll try to dig up more on this Coca Cola Bear thing, whether there's a definite Henson Co. connection or it's just an odd little side gig. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 18:22, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
Not to get into personal territory, but as far as I know, Richard didn't do Sweetums in his later years because he was too ill to do it. It's possible that John did the puppet and Richard looped the voice. Scooter 18:49, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
That's pretty much what we've been saying, yeah. It's confirmed that John Henson operated the puppet, but the claim that he did the voice too seems to have come from IMDb and strikes me as unlikely based on aural evidence, and the fact that Henson's Sweetums, when he does speak, is close enough given his minimal dialogue but clearly not identical to Hunt's. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 18:56, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
It's my understanding that Richard didn't puppeteer at all on M*V3D, and dubbed in the voices later. I'll look for the source on that. -- Peter (talk) 19:04, 15 September 2006 (UTC)
No, Richard did puppeteer on M*V3D (or at least the pre-show bits). I've seen production pictures of him with Scooter and other characters on the set. -- Brad D. (talk) 18:11, 3 October 2006 (UTC)
I once e-mailed Rick Lyon, who performed in the film. I aksed a few Muppet-related questions, one of which had to do with who performed Beaker on-set, as I had recently read that Richard Hunt didn't do any actual performing, and he told me that he did perform as well as voice Beaker in the film, and just didn't perform Sweetums. It is probably hard to cite e-mail responses as "sources". --Minor muppetz 18:15, 3 October 2006 (UTC)
Well, this kind of helps prove that he was puppeteering at the time. (picture) -- Brad D. (talk) 18:23, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

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