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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Muppets Shut Out Of Their Own Theater At Christmas

Now this irks me - which admittedly, isn't hard to do. For the last 6 weeks or so Disney has used the Muppet Theater in Disney California Adventure's Hollywood Land to promote Tim Burton's Frankenweenie movie, a movie few paying customers actually went to see. So here we are, heading towards the Christmas holidays, a time when Muppets shine with holiday spirit, and instead of putting the beloved puppets back in their own theater, Disney is going to use building to promote the Disney Channel's Prep and Landing TV show, which has something to do with Christmas, but I'm not actually sure what because I HAVE NEVER SEEN PREP AND LANDING, nor care to.

Now granted, the Muppets 3D movie shown in DCA, now over 10 years old, doesn't exactly pack in the audience anymore but whose fault is that? The movie is grainy and dated and just looks dull and worn in the age of sparkling digital prints. Guess what? Disney makes movies. They could have easily come with other Muppet adventures to rotate into what is a very nice theater. Instead we get Prep and Landing, cheaply made digital graphic animation over Muppets, endearing characters with hearts and souls and the touch of the human hand of real puppeteers.

Why did Disney even bother purchasing Jim Henson's Muppets? They have done so little with them. Disney made a new Muppet movie last year that was a moderate success. While the movie played in theaters, the Muppets were brought out of their closet and given an actual presence in the theme parks. When the movie passed on into home video land, Disney put the Muppets back into the closet where they are left, neglected. Far too busy with The Avengers and buying Star Wars characters to be concerned about something as trivial as Muppets. Guess what Disney? A lot of people still love the Muppets now decades after their glory days, and neglectfully ignoring their importance only serves to irk those who can still be counted on as loyal fans.

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