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Henson Co. owns, or NBC?

Does Henson Company own this program's rights, or does NBC Washington/WRC? I forget where I saw someone asking this question, whether it was here or elsewhere. -- Zanimum 21:13, October 10, 2009 (UTC)

Text from The Walt Disney Company: "Other productions, such as early commercials, talk show appearances, The Great Santa Claus Switch and others, are owned by outside groups, i.e., Sam and Friends is now owned by NBC Universal, via their ownership of WRC-TV, the station that produced Sam and Friends many years ago - whereas the characters are owned by The Muppets Holding Company." -- Andrew Leal (talk) 21:18, October 10, 2009 (UTC)
That's interesting -- where's that text from? -- Danny@fandom (talk) 06:33, October 11, 2009 (UTC)
Like I said, that's on our own The Walt Disney Company page. However, looking through the history, Peter added it way back in 2006. Looking at the associated talk page, though, it seems he wasn't entirely sure, in which case we should take it out (since we seem to be the only place saying anything about it). It sounded a trifle odd to me, that WRC-TV would own the series simply because it happened to air on it. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 16:31, October 11, 2009 (UTC)
Oh, yeah -- good catch. If we don't have a source for it, we should take it out. -- Danny@fandom (talk) 02:31, October 13, 2009 (UTC)
Well, in this post from Amy Mebberson, she said that she wanted to include Yorick in one of the Muppet comic book covers, but was informed by her editor that Disney doens't own Sam and Friends. I guess that means that Henson still owns the characters at least. --Minor muppetz 02:25, December 13, 2009 (UTC)


I found the video clip on YouTube Wanna see it? Sam & Friends - Promo/ID/Skit/Spot - c.1961 "Sezme" 09:14, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

Sam and Friends

According to User talk:Gribbaziggy, the recent quote added to this page was recalled from memory and therefore does not belong in quotes. However, the information may be verifiable in other ways. — Scott (talk) 04:14, 14 January 2007 (UTC)

Unknown Episodes

I recently got an email from somebody asking if I had some "Sam & Friends" Episodes, the person also stated that there was an episode which included the sketch "Inchworm" maybe dating that to the origin of the sketch. Also, he stated that there was a sketch called "National Yorick Day" and "The 12 Days of Christmas," I emailed him about information but so far nothing. Should I add this information, or what for some more confirmed details? He seemed to grow up with "Sam & Friends" User: Thefrackle

You should wait until you have some confirmation. I'm glad you're tracking that down! -- Danny (talk) 00:15, 9 January 2007 (UTC)
I Found a picture that may lead to the Original Inchworm Sketch if that helps.-- Fuzzyface32 12:59, 28 September 2007 (UTC)

Surviving Episodes

When I read about the surviving episode thing, I realize the page made no explaintion to what happened to other of Sam and Friends episodes or why is it lost. Does Henson have a library of all episode of Sam and Friends? What happened to the episodes that did not survive?

I know it sounds like a dumb question, yet there is a explaintion to this; did someone burn them? Did it get discarded? Or was it locked away and forgotten?

(Joekido 19:13, 28 December 2006 (UTC))

I seem to recall reading about this somewhere. I think it was in an interview with Jane Henson, though I may be wrong. It said that Jim didn't really hold onto things like that, even as a record. Once a project was over, it was over, and he went onto the next thing. I'll see if I can find that article. --Gribbaziggy 19:30, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
Sam and Friends was broadcast live, at a time when recording TV broadcasts was difficult and expensive. The show began in 1955, and the first commercial videotape recorder wasn't even available until 1956. It wasn't at all routine at the time to make "copies" of live TV broadcasts. The "surviving" episodes of Sam and Friends that we have are kinescope recordings, made by pointing a film camera at a TV screen while the broadcast is going on. Henson made some of these recordings himself for episodes that he thought were technically interesting and worth keeping. But it was expensive, and not something that you would do every time. Therefore, the majority of S&F broadcasts just went out live, and were never recorded by anybody.
I'm glad you brought that up, Joe -- it's definitely an interesting note for the article. If anybody can find some sources to back up what I just said, then we should add it to the article. -- Danny (talk) 21:34, 30 December 2006 (UTC)

early black and white

It is said here that the earliest episodes were broadcast in black and white, and it later went to color. Do we have a source for this? I've seen an interview with Jim Henson, which can be found at Muppet Central, where Jim Henson said that the show was in color from the beginning. While most episodes that still exist are in black and white, it's possible that black and white film was used to record them (only a few shows were actually recorded, and most of them could have been recorded by placing film in front of a black and white TV, or with black and white film). I would think that if a show from the 1950s was originally in color that somebody invovled with the show would remember, especially if most other shows at the time were in black and white. Then again, Jim Henson could have been mistaking; after all, in the same interview, he says that Kermit first became a frog and had his collar and flippers in The Frog Prince, which we know actually happened earlier. --Minor muppetz 19:35, 10 November 2006 (UTC)

I'm a little confused by your question. The proof that the series aired in color at some point is evident in "Poison to Poison," as seen in The World of Jim Henson. The "color from the beginning" thing you bring up is unlikely for a show that, by many accounts, was broadcast live (as opposed to animated productions like Huckleberry Hound, which were made in color but transmitted in black and white). I'd want to see this interview you're talking about before deciding whether to lend it any credence. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 20:23, 10 November 2006 (UTC)
I dug around and found the exact text you're referring to, which Muppet Central reprinted here, but is from a 1982 article:

HENSON: Well, actually when I was first working, we were working in color now let's see, is that really true?

Harris: 1953 you were working in color?

HENSON: Fifty-four, it was 54, I think.

Harris: 1954 was Sam and Friends, yes.

HENSON: Well, I know we had color. I do remember doing shows strictly in black and white, too, so you're right. And I think I built and painted a couple of my early characters in black and white but, you see, NBC had established the color television system, and so they immediately converted their 5 owned and operated stations to color. Washington was one of those, so we were almost one of the very first people to do color television. NBC was trying to convert all of their local programming to color right away to encourage the sale of the sets, so I barely remember working in black and white, although I do know that I did do it, but there was not a major difference, though.

On the whole, it doesn't shed a whole lot of light on the set-up, to be frank, and Henson himself certainly seems to have a less than clear memory on the subject. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 20:57, 10 November 2006 (UTC)

Sam and Friends was broadcast on WRC in Washington, DC. WRC was one of NBC's flagship stations, so it's likely NBC would have outfitted it with color production facilities in 1954, when commercial colorcasting with the RCA system began. It's indeed possible that Sam and Friends was always in color -- it was an ideal show for color. But you'd have to find someone who was working there in 1954 who might know. (Willard Scott, perhaps?)
I'd like to see some of the Wilkins Coffee commercials:
Happy Muppet (Henson) -- "Do you want Wilkins Coffee or the cheap kind?"
Grumpy Muppet -- "I want the cheap kind!"
The coffee can pops open and birds pop out, going "cheep, cheep, cheep".
Happy Muppet -- "That coffee is for the birds!"
All this in 10 seconds.

WilliamSommerwerck 11:34, 13 March 2008 (UTC)

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