The creations of the Jim Henson Company stand as some of the most iconic franchises in the history of children’s entertainment. In addition to creating vibrant, very human characters through the deft use of puppetry, the best examples of the Henson brand of all-ages comedy is almost subversive in the way that it presented ideas, and unforgettable in the ways it sent its messages. One of those creations was “Fraggle Rock,” a series about an entire society of Muppet-like creatures that live underground and try to co-exist with other societies that are fundamentally different from them. After the recent success in reviving the original Muppets on the big screen, it looks like this Henson idea is on its way there, as well.
According to Variety, a new film based on “Fraggle Rock” will be created in conjunction with New Regency Entertainment, the Henson Co., and Jim’s daughter and longtime film and television producer Lisa Henson. While a film based on this show has been in the works for close to ten years, it’s recently picked up a major new player that should help to make the project coalesce faster: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who will both produce and star in the film.
When New Regency began developing their iteration of this project in 2011, originally Ivan Reitman’s production house Montecito Pictures was attached to develop it, but they’re no longer involved. Gordon-Levitt released a statment about his involvement with the film, in which he says,
The first screen personas I ever loved were Henson creations, first on ‘Sesame Street,’ and then on ‘Fraggle Rock.’ Jim Henson’s characters make you laugh and sing, but they’re also layered, surprising, and wise. From Oscar the Grouch, to Yoda, to the Fraggles. I’ve never stopped loving his work, even as a young frisky man, and on into adulthood. Collaborating with Lisa Henson makes me confident we can do something that Jim would have loved. I’m grateful and excited to be working with New Regency on this project.
No release information has been disclosed as of yet, but as big Henson fans, we’ll be watching this one very closely. Gordon-Levitt can next be seen this October in Robert Zemeckis’ film The Walk, and he is currently shooting his role as Edward Snowden in Oliver Stone’s biopic on the whistleblower which will also be released late this year.
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