From the time they met in the early 1980s, Jim felt a great affinity for writer, comedian, and sound artist Fred Newman. By the time Jim went into production with his live-action sitcom pilot, Puppetman, he felt such a strong connection to Newman that he asked him to play the lead, a surrogate for Jim in a story taking place behind the scenes of a children’s television show. Newman had been a writer on Muppet Magazine (starting in 1983) and a writer on the Muppet Show Live arena shows, giving him a chance to interact with Jim in a meaningful way. He sent Jim a copy of his book, Zounds! The Kids Guide to Sound Making which Jim enjoyed and saved among his personal files.
In June 1965, 28-year-old Jim Henson started a written log of his activities in what became known as “The Red Book.” He noted down what had happened up until that point (deemed “Ancient History”) and then recorded anything that he felt was worth recording as single line journal entries until the end of 1988.
Selected curated entries courtesy of The Jim Henson Company Archives.