A Jim Henson documentary is in the works by production duo Ron Howard and Brian Grazer. The “definitive portrait” of the Muppets creator is being produced by Disney Original Documentary and made “with the full participation and cooperation of the Henson family.”
The film will “present a fascinating and intimate look at Jim’s illustrious career creating treasured characters and revolutionizing television and film,” promises a press release. “With never-before-seen personal archives, the film will give audiences an exciting first-person view into the life of one of the world’s most inspiring and iconoclastic creators through exclusive home movies, photographs, sketches and Henson’s personal diaries.”
Howard will direct and produce the as-yet-untitled project under the banner of his and Grazer’s Imagine Documentaries. Sara Bernstein Justin Wilkes, and Margaret Bodde also serve as producers.
Henson’s family gave the documentary their blessing, saying in a statement: “The Jim Henson Company’s archive is a treasure reflecting our father’s work, personal life and inspirations, and has been carefully maintained for the last 30 years under the leadership of archivist Karen Falk.”
“It will be thrilling to see the story that emerges from these materials in the hands of a truly great filmmaker like Ron Howard, who has the perfect spirit and personality to tell Jim Henson’s story,” the statement continues.
Henson, the man behind Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Big Bird, Cookie Monster, Bert and Ernie, and more, died in 1990. His Muppet characters were purchased by Disney in 2004. The Mouse House released the first Muppets Halloween special last fall, and recently announced a new original series called The Muppets Mayhem.
In addition to Academy Award-winning films like A Beautiful Mind and Frost/Nixon, Howard previously immortalized The Beatles in the 2016 documentary The Beatles: Eight Days a Week.