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Hear Kermit The Frog's New Voice As He Hands Out Some Words Of Wisdom
There was a great deal of drama in Jim Henson-land earlier this year when Steve Whitmire, the actor who voiced Kermit the Frog for 27 years, was fired from his role. The breakup seemed to be a tumultuous one: Whitmire said that Disney brass weren't happy with him sharing insights on how the Muppets should be depicted, while Disney insiders said that Whitmire's communication style was "overly hostile and unproductive." This rift, among other things, resulted in Whitmire leaving the position he's held for nearly three decades.
Now, Kermit's got a new set of vocal chords, courtesy of Matt Vogel. The video above marks Vogel's debut as The Green One. In it, Kermit gives us some words of wisdom, along with a sprinkling of schtick. It may just be our imagination, but there seems to be a slightly higher pitch to his voice. Though, yes, he's still unmistakably Kermit.
As for Vogel's credentials, they're certainly impressive. According to fan site Den of Geek, he'd been with the Muppets Studio since 1996. He'd worked with Whitemire as an assistant puppeteer for Sesame Street's Ernie. Vogel also had turns as Big Bird and Count von Count. What's more, in 2014's Muppets Most Wanted, Vogel played Constantine, another frog who attempts to hijack Kermit's identity. Here's a short clip of Kermit (Whitmire) and the cloaked Constantine (Vogel) encountering each other. You may recognize this scene from the meme it inspired.
Vogel is only the third person to have ever voiced Kermit, notes The Hollywood Reporter. Henson, the father of the Muppet-verse, was the original voice actor until his death in 1990.