Cheryl Henson, a Jim Henson Co. board member and daughter of the late Muppets creator, wrote a Facebook post about the firing of former Kermit the Frog puppeteer Steve Whitmire, claiming that his version of the story is “ridiculously self serving” and that he performed Kermit as a “bitter, angry, depressed, victim.” She then goes on to say that in the past few years Whitmire had not been funny or fun. She also reveals that her brother Brian asked Whitmire to perform Kermit, not her father and that recasting Kermit was long overdue. Read the full post below.
The news comes shortly after the Muppets Studio sent out an official statement about the termination of Whitmire, saying that they were concerned with his “repeated unacceptable business conduct over a period of many years” and how he “consistently failed to address the feedback.”
Whitmire recently wrote a post on his blog and talked about how he approached playing Kermit, saying: “My hope was to install it directly into their hearts and minds so that they could, in turn, be inspired to do the same for the next generation of performers instead of the characters becoming stale copies of their former selves. But, as I look around at what is presently transpiring it’s clear to me that the job is far from done.”
Whitmire took over the role of Kermit in 1990 after the death of Jim Henson but had worked in the Muppets universe since 1978. Matt Vogel, who performed as the Kermit doppelgänger Constantine in Muppets Most Wanted, is set to take over the role of the iconic Muppet.