Jim Henson

Jim Henson

The Biography

Book - 2013
Average Rating:
Rate this:
"For the first time ever-- a comprehensive biography of one of the twentieth century's most innovative creative artists: the incomparable, irreplaceable Jim Henson. He was a gentle dreamer whose genial bearded visage was recognized around the world, but most people got to know him only through the iconic characters he created: Kermit the Frog, Bert and Ernie, Miss Piggy, Big Bird. The Muppets made Jim Henson a household name, but they were just part of his remarkable story. This extraordinary biography--written with the generous cooperation of the Henson family--covers the full arc of Henson's all-too-brief life: from his childhood in Leland, Mississippi; through the years of burgeoning fame in Washington D.C., New York, and London; to the decade of international celebrity that preceded his untimely death at age fifty-three. Drawing on hundreds of hours of new interviews with Henson's family, friends, and closest collaborators, as well as unprecedented access to private family and company archives (including never-before-seen interviews, business documents, and Henson's private letters), Brian Jay Jones explores the creation of the Muppets, Henson's contributions to Sesame Street and Saturday Night Live, and his nearly ten-year campaign to bring The Muppet Show to television. "--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Ballantine Books, [2013], ©2013
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780345526113
Branch Call Number: 921 Henso
Description: xiv, 585 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 25 cm


From Library Staff

CRRL_CraigG Jun 26, 2015

Jim Henson: The Biography approaches the man through his work. This makes sense since, as he was the artist who redefined puppetry, Henson created and entertained almost non-stop for four decades.

From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
FindingJane Jun 02, 2016

Mr. Jones spent a lot of time gathering, researching and interviewing to capture the essence of Jim Henson and his efforts paid off enormously. We get a full portrait of the departed Mr. Henson, a man who strive for joy, beauty and wonder in his private and personal life. Mr. Henson was a man of boundless genius, talent and enthusiasm, a true-blue, never-say-die optimist who never let failure or naysayers stop him from what he wanted to do. His death came as a shock and a tragedy to all who knew him, people who were touched by his kindness, insight and constant ability to surprise.

Mr. Jones’s biography delves deeply into Mr. Henson’s life and his determination to push the boundaries of his craft. Here we have the origins of Kermit the Frog, Mr. Henson’s relationships with his friends who became business partners and his strivings to bring his visions to the big and small screens. This is a portrait of a genius who was a Southern gentleman, a tender giant and a powerhouse who rarely swore or raised his voice.

Mr. Henson was hardly perfect; Mr. Jones exposes the complete man, the generous boss and the discreet womanizer. But what shines over everything is the portrait of a legend in his own lifetime, a man who became recognized on the street so that people clamored for his autograph and demanded that he “do” Kermit.

Mr. Henson will be missed, by his adoring public and his loved ones. Thank you, Mr. Jones.

Nov 21, 2015

Great biography from Brian Jay Jones about the life of the greatest entertainer in the puppet world of all time, Jim Henson 1936-1990!

CRRL_CraigG Jun 26, 2015

Jim Henson: The Biography approaches the man through his work. This makes sense since, as he was the artist who redefined puppetry, Henson created and entertained almost non-stop for four decades.

2014 Plutarch Award for Best Biography - Finalist

amykduffy Apr 30, 2014

Jim Henson was inspirational because of his boundless creative energy but even more so for his eternal optimism. He created so many iconic characters that have brightened the lives of kids of all ages. But he is one of my heroes because he was a quiet, kind person who still managed to build a business empire and lead a huge team of like-minded individuals. This book will make you want to accomplish and create great things.

Apr 24, 2014

As someone who was not old enough to remember the majority of his work, I found this book very interesting. I quite often found myself looking up the old videos of the coffee commercials where he got his start in puppetry and Rowlfe on the Jimmy Dean show.

This is a very thorough biography, and as such, is quite a long book. There were times when I felt it was a little long winded, but over all a great book. By then end it had in tears over his passing, because I felt like I knew him!

Growing up (and still today) absolutely loving the Muppets, this was a must read for me!

Dec 13, 2013

Kermit the Frog and company are such confirmed icons of popular culture that it's difficult to imagine the world without them. And many who love and adore the Muppets aren't even aware of their modest beginnings on a local Washington, D.C. television program in the 1950's called Sam and Friends. It was this lucky intersection of Jim Henson, puppetry and early TV that was the key to the international success that would follow. This was the difference between the Muppets becoming timeless characters versus being forgotten as onetime wonders. With Jim at the helm they would go from local TV, to commercials, to a regular TV series, to eventually starring in their own franchise of movies.

Jim Henson: The Biography by Brian Jay Jones is as much the Muppet's story as it is Jim's. You'll see values from his own Normal Rockwell-esque upbringing that would naturally be passed on to his work and in those who worked for him. And he wasn't always the kind man he's often portrayed as either, but it's complexities like these that makes his story all that more interesting to read.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings

LibraryThing Series Information


Find it at CRRL

To Top