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Theodor Geisel

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Geisel's credit on Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss

Theodor Seuss Geisel (March 2, 1904 - September 24, 1991) was a children's author-illustrator and commercial cartoonist, best known by his pen name, Dr. Seuss. Taking his professional name from his middle name (his mother's maiden name, which rhymes with voice in its original pronunciation), Seuss wrote more than 60 books, including And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, Green Eggs and Ham, Horton Hears a Who!, and The Cat in the Hat. His writing was distinguished by his complex rhyme schemes (often using anapestic tetrameter) and the creation of unusual or elaborate names and words, such as Sneetches or Oobleck. Geisel's illustration style was highlighted by his trademark horseshoe eyes for characters and teetering, elliptical towers and loops in architecture.

All of these elements were incorporated by The Jim Henson Company into the 1996 series The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss, which made use of many of the characters created by Geisel (The Cat in the Hat, Horton the Elephant, The Grinch, Sam-I-Am, and others), as well as creating new characters and landscapes by melding the Seuss style with the Muppet aesthetic.

That same year, Jim Henson Pictures optioned the rights to a live-action version of the Seuss book Oh, the Places You'll Go!. The film was never produced.

Muppet set designer William Beeton cited Geisel, along with Henry Moore, as part of the inspiration for the soft curves and arches in the caves of Fraggle Rock.

Geisel's other work included countless political cartoons and scripts for WWII propaganda films, the occasional adult book such as The Seven Lady Godivas (1939), and the screenplay for the movie The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T, which featured Seussian architecture and costume elements.

References

Grinchfozzie

Fozzie as the Grinch

Drpuce

"The Brat in the Hat" by "Dr. Puce" from Sesame Street

Blueggesandtoast

Blue Eggs and Toast on Dinosaurs

Scramiam

Scram-I-Am

  • Fozzie Bear was mistaken for the Grinch in a sequence from It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie, after being accidentally painted green. The scene features two "Who"-like characters in elaborate make-up, specifically referencing the 2000 How the Grinch Stole Christmas film adaptation.
  • The Sesame Street song "Doin' the Family Thing" includes a shot of a woman reading I Can Read with My Eyes Shut to a kid.
  • The closing scene of a 2007 episode of Sesame Street features Oscar reading Slimey Rotten Eggs and Jam by Dr. Sewage, featuring Scram-I-Am and Gordon as a Cat in the Hat-esque character.

Book Connections

In addition to his own illustrations and writing, Geisel oversaw many sub-series under the "Dr. Seuss" label and collaborated with other artists under such pen names as Rosetta Stone and Theo. LeSieg (Geisel backwards). Many of these artists also worked on Muppet/Sesame Street books.

  • Mel Crawford illustrated the 1952 book version of Gerald McBoing Boing, written by Geisel as a children's record and adapted for an Oscar-winning animated short.
  • Michael K. Frith served as editor-in-chief for the Seuss Beginner Books series, and illustrated the 1975 book Because a Little Bug Went Ka-choo, written by Geisel as Rosetta Stone. Frith appeared as an interviewee in the documentary, The Political Dr. Seuss.
  • Linda Hayward conceived and wrote the Dr. Seuss Beginner Fun book series.
  • Joe Mathieu illustrated The Tooth Book (1989) and The Eye Book (1996), written by Geisel under the pen name Theo. LeSieg
  • Michael J. Smollin illustrated the 1980 Theo. LeSieg book Maybe You Should Fly a Jet! Maybe You Should Be a Vet!!

Connections

Many actors, puppeteers, and other crew members worked on both Muppet/Henson productions and Dr. Seuss adaptations for film, TV, or stage.

  • Eddie Albert voiced the opening narrator in The Lorax (TV, 1972)
  • John Alexander played a shopper in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000)
  • Tim Blaney puppeteered on How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000)
  • Carol Burnett voiced Sour Kangaroo in Horton Hears a Who (film, 2008)
  • Daws Butler voiced Karlos K. Krinklebein the Fish in The Cat in the Hat (TV, 1971)
  • Jim Carrey played the Grinch in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000) and Horton in Horton Hears a Who (film, 2008)
  • Dan Castellaneta voiced Thing 1 and Thing 2 in The Cat in the Hat (film, 2003)
  • Billy Crystal played the Voice of America in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994)
  • Tim Curry voiced Finagel in Daisy-Head Mayzie (TV, 1995)
  • Danny DeVito voiced the Lorax in The Lorax (film, 2012)
  • Charles Durning voiced Grandfather Yook in The Butter Battle Book (TV, 1989)
  • Zac Efron voiced Ted Wiggins in The Lorax (film, 2012)
  • Dakota Fanning played Sally in The Cat in the Hat (film, 2003)
  • Matt Frewer played the Cat in the Hat in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994)
  • Albert Hague composed the songs for How the Grinch Stole Christmas (TV, 1966)
  • Sean Hayes played Mr. Humberfloob and the Fish in The Cat in the Hat (film, 2003)
  • Ed Helms voiced the Once-ler in The Lorax (film, 2012)
  • Ron Howard directed How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000)
  • Bill Irwin played Lou Lou Who in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000)
  • Christopher Lloyd played Mr. Hunch in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994)
  • Howie Mandel voiced Sam-I-Am in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994)
  • Andrea Martin played an ad woman in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994)
  • Mike Myers played The Cat in the Hat in The Cat in the Hat (film, 2003)
  • Kathy Najimy played Kathy in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994)
  • Rosie O'Donnell played the Cat in the Hat, as a replacement, in Seussical (Broadway, 2001)
  • Joe Raposo wrote the music and songs for Halloween is Grinch Night (TV, 1977), Pontoffel Pock, Where Are You? (TV, 1980, where he also did a voice), and The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat (TV, 1982)
  • Deep Roy played a postal clerk in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000)
  • Molly Shannon played Betty Lou Who in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000)
  • Martin Short voices the Cat in the Hat in The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That! (TV, 2010-)
  • Hal Smith voiced a German-accented narrator in The Hoober-Bloob Highway (TV, 1975), Grandfather Josiah in Halloween is Grinch Night (TV, 1977), McGillicuddy, Good Fairy-in-Chief and others in Pontoffel Pock, Where Are You? (TV, 1980)
  • Patrick Stewart played Sgt. Mullvaney in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994)
  • Jeffrey Tambor played Mayor August Maywho in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000)
  • Jim Thurman voiced the Cat in the Hat and others on several Dr. Seuss Beginner Book Videos (video, 1989)
  • Frank Welker voiced various roles in The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat (TV, 1982), Horton and others in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994), Max the dog in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000), and Nevins the dog in The Cat in the Hat (film, 2003)
  • Betty White voiced Grammy Norma in The Lorax (film, 2012)
  • Lillias White played a shopper in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film, 2000)
  • Robin Williams played Father and the fish in In Search of Dr. Seuss (TV, 1994)
  • Jonathan Winters voiced Dr. Eisenbart in Daisy-Head Mayzie (TV, 1995)

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