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Sideshow Announces License Agreement with the Jim Henson Company

Saturday, February 1, 2003

“Collectible Polystone Busts from Classic ‘Muppet Show’ television series to be released by Sideshow / Weta”

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA – February, 2003 – In 1976, Jim Henson’s Muppets charmed the world with the debut of their own weekly half-hour television program The Muppet Show. The series’ five-year run launched the Muppets into superstardom and inspired numerous television specials and six feature films. Today, as ever, Jim Henson’s colorful creations continue to bring cheers and smiles to adults and children alike with their unique blend of irreverent humor and music.

To celebrate the special place The Muppet Show will always hold in so many hearts, Sideshow / Weta Collectibles are excited to announce the release of a new line of exquisitely sculpted collectible polystone busts depicting characters from the classic 1970′s television show.

Beginning in the summer of this year and continuing through 2003, Sideshow / Weta will be releasing twenty highly detailed busts, each based on the most beloved characters of the classic ‘Muppet Show’ television series. Those characters include: Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo the Great, Scooter, Rowlf the Dog, Statler and Waldorf, Dr. Bunsen Honeydew, Beaker, Sam the Eagle, the Swedish Chef, the Electric Mayhem members — Dr. Teeth, Janice, Zoot and Animal – and finally Capt. Link Hogthrob, Crazy Harry, Beauregard and Lew Zealand.

At Weta Workshop, details are everything, and the team of sculptors has made it their primary aim to capture in these collectibles, a level of accuracy seldom seen in licensed merchandising. Over the years, the various Muppet characters have been realized in many incarnations, but Sideshow / Weta’s intention with this line has been to reconnect Muppet-lovers with their favorite characters as they appeared in the very beginning. Working from reference images of the original 1970s puppets, the sculptors have endeavored to recreate in perfect detail, every nuance of the classic Muppet puppets, from wrinkles and ruffs to stitches and seams.

Throughout the development process, the Weta sculpting team collaborated closely with the creative staff of The Jim Henson Company. Together they have worked to design a pose for each Muppet that succinctly captures the personality and life of the character as depicted in the show.

Each bust comes on a Corinthian-inspired plinth that evokes the image of a classical sculpture while also hearkening to the decorative motifs of the Muppet Theatre. Each one also bears the 25th Anniversary, The Muppet Show, logo and the character’s name, while on the underside is listed the sculptor’s name and signature, ensuring these beautiful pieces will be treasured items for many years to come.

“We hope you’ll share our pride in this new line of Muppet polystone busts. It has been a joy to be associated with The Jim Henson Company and bring these fabulous characters to life. Join us in celebrating all things Muppet! It’s time to raise the curtain on The Muppet Show,” comments, Richard Taylor, Director of Weta Workshop.

Sideshow / Weta Collectibles is the banner of a unique partnership between acclaimed toy and collectible creators, Sideshow Collectibles of California, and New Zealand based special-effects company, Weta Workshop. Sideshow / Weta came together in 2000 to forge a relationship that saw the release of multiple lines of polystone collectibles based on the film adaptation of The Lord of the Rings.

Continuing the partnership that began with The Lord of the Rings, the same collection of Weta sculptors have now chosen to apply their artistic sensibilities and attention to detail to the collectibles of the Muppets, manufactured under the Sideshow / Weta Collectibles Brand.

The Jim Henson Company, an established leader in family entertainment for more than 40 years, is a multimedia production company; one of the top character licensors in the industry; a leading publisher of children’s books; and home to Jim Henson Television, Jim Henson Pictures, Jim Henson Interactive and Jim Henson’s Creature Shop™.  The Company is headquartered in Los Angeles with offices and production facilities in New York and London.  The Jim Henson Company is a wholly owned subsidiary of EM.TV & Merchandising AG based in Munich, Germany.  The Jim Henson Company website is located at: www.henson.com.

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