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Published on Jun 9, 2010
There's a new stop on the NBC studio tour in New York, and it's all about the Muppets' beginnings. On the June 8th edition of the NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams showed Frank Oz something that Oz created years ago while he - and Jim Henson - worked backstage on the Jack Paar show.
Oz and Henson spent their downtime in their utility closet decorating pipes, forming their first visions of what the Muppets would look like. As Oz reflects in this video, the pipes are from a simpler time and what the Muppets are really about: affectionate anarchy.
While the pipes are a recent addition to the NBC studios tour in New York, this isn't the first time they've been shown on TV. Jim Henson showed then NBC Nightly News anchor Gene Shalit the Muppet pipes way back in April 1980, after the pipes were exposed during studio construction.
Why now add the pipes to the tour? Perhaps because a new Muppets movie is in the works. It is tentatively set to release on Christmas Day 2011. If Walt Disney gives the official green light to the film, Jason Segel will be one of the writers - which only makes sense considering his Muppet opera production in the movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall.
Even though we'll have to wait for the latest Muppet movie, at least we have the pipes and this cool bit of history in the meantime.