The Christmas Carol puppetry almost featured a puppet version of Charles Dickens

Henson spoke of how “The Muppet Christmas Carol” had become famous in Britain as one of the most faithfully literary adaptations of Charles Dickens’ story ever made, a description of which he find it extremely flattering. He credits screenwriter Jerry Juhl, as well as Goelz (Gonzo’s actor) for the quality of the film, but reveals that, during production, he hit a strange creative deadlock. Although the story could stand on its own, Henson felt that it was a pity that Dickens’ voice was not included. Then a producer suggested the possibility of bringing Dickens into the story as an on-screen narrator.

After muttering a few ideas, Henson came up with the idea that Gonzo could play Dickens. But one of those mutterings was actually the theory that Dickens would probably be played by a puppet. Dickens, if one has seen the portrait of the author, has quite wild hair and an expressive face. Maybe Dickens translated it well into the Muppet form. Of course, this would be the highest honor an author could ever achieve.

In the end, they went with Gonzo. However, not wanting to leave a Muppet on the screen, Rizzo (Steve Whitmire) is immediately brought in as an assistant. It was wonderful, it turned out, as Rizzo’s street-wise act proved to be a perfect counterpoint to classier Dickensian prose. Plus, fans can now enjoy the first Muppet feature film that, in a way, features Gonzo in the lead role.

Of course, second to Scrooge. The Christmas Carol puppetry almost featured a puppet version of Charles Dickens

Fry Electronics Team

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