The Muppets Holding Company (MHC), a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, announced today that Martin G. Baker has been hired as a consultant for the organization's new entertainment endeavors. A close colleague of the late Muppets creator Jim Henson, Bakerhas more than 25 years of experience producing Muppets content in all media. Baker's primary responsibilities will be consulting on entertainment initiatives as MHC enters its second year of stewardship of the Muppets brand. The Muppets franchise was purchased by The Walt Disney Company in April 2004 from The Jim Henson Company. Since that time, Baker has utilized his expertise to help integrate the Muppets into The Walt Disney Company family, including serving as a producer on the new ABC telefilm "The Muppets' Wizard of Oz". Baker's duties will include searching for ways to expand the Muppets' unparalleled talent base as demand for the brand grows. He will be leading a search for more multi-talented performers in the world of puppeteering who will serve as understudies to core Muppets performers and help the company develop new characters and service the growing international demands for the classic characters.
"After decades of working with the Muppets, I know how very much they areloved the world over," said Baker. "I am truly delighted to be part of extending Jim Henson's vision for the future of these characters at The Walt Disney Company."
"No one could help us continue and grow these heartwarming and humorous Muppet characters better than Martin Baker," remarked Chris Curtin, general manager and vice president of MHC. "He played an invaluable role in helping ensure that the brand's integrity remained true during MHC's first large scale endeavor, 'The Muppets' Wizard of Oz,' and we are thrilled to have him onboard as we move forward."
Baker has worked with The Jim Henson Company on Muppets productions since1979. As their executive vice president of production, Baker was integral tothe production of such television projects as "The Muppet Show," "FraggleRock," "Jim Henson's The Storyteller," "Jim Henson's Secret Life of Toys," "Muppets Tonight," and the NBC TV movie "It's A Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie." His feature film credits include "The Muppet Movie," "The GreatMuppet Caper," "Follow That Bird," "The Dark Crystal," "The Muppet Christmas Carol," "Muppet Treasure Island," "The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland," and "Muppets From Space." Prior to joining The Jim Henson Company, Baker spent 14 years working for the ATV network in the U.K.