The Muppets have just posted the first appearence of Kermit the Frog with Matt Vogel as the performer. The video takes the format of their short “Thought of the Week” videos and there is no question that Kermit sounds a bit different.
Vogel took over the role after former performer and designated Jim Henson succesor Steve Whitmire was fired by Disney. Whitmire claims the issue stemmed from providing notes on the Muppets’ ABC series. Disney released this statement: “The role of Kermit the Frog is an iconic one that is beloved by fans and we take our responsibility to protect the integrity of that character very seriously. We raised concerns about Steve’s repeated unacceptable business conduct over a period of many years and he consistently failed to address the feedback. The decision to part ways was a difficult one which was made in consultation with the Henson family and has their full support.
The video is posted about two weeks before they take the stage at the Hollywood Bowl for a weekend of live performances.