I’ve stated many times before on this site of my love of all things Muppets and more importantly the genius that was the late great Jim Henson. In 1989, the Jim Henson Hour debuted on NBC, and of the twelve episode filmed only nine were aired on that Network. Two more episodes aired later on Nickelodeon in 1992 while the third aired only in the UK.
One of the episodes I desperately wanted to see but missed contained the short feature, Monster Maker, based on the book by Nicholas Fisk. The story concerns a young boy, Matt Banting (Kieran O’Brien) who wishes to be a Special Effects master like his idol, Chancey Bellow (Harry Dean Stanton). In a fortuitous set of circumstances, Bellow opens up an effects house near Banting’s home town…and thanks to a chance meeting and a display of Banting’s already gifted work with puppetry the two become friends. Which is how Banting is introduced to the Gorgon…
…and I’ll stop with any more spoilers right there. I was very happy to learn last night that Monster Maker is now available on Netflix Instant! So make sure to head on over and give it a watch, it’s a good little film and surprisingly ‘mature’.
Thanks to the MuppetWiki for the photos, including this wonderful one of Harry Dean Stanton and Jim Henson!