Last week I had the incredible pleasure of participating in the press junket for Disney's "Muppets Most Wanted," the sequel to the 2011 film, the aptly named, "The Muppets."
Here are Tina Fey, Kermit the Frog, Ricky Gervais, Constantine, Ty Burrell, and Sam Eagle.
There I sat at the beautiful Beverly Hilton Hotel as part of the group of invited journalists who were asking pertinent and pointed questions about the filmmakers, the movie making process, their inspiration, the stars talent (<--that's the cool way to refer to the people in the film) interaction with each other and all that.
And there were the filmmakers and the stars talent answering those pertinent and pointed questions in a lovely conversational manner while bantering with each other about things that happened on set and their best moments on the film and all that.
The brilliance of this particular junket was that the Muppets were themselves and never broke that "fourth wall." They were very much themselves, just as you wanted them to be.
Let me just tell you why it's fun to be me at these things - because while I sat there posing as a real journalist, I was truly just a star struck über-fan. I have always loved the Muppets and faithfully watched their show even when I was a young adult, and then later I introduced my kids to them. They are part of our collective pop culture. Their sense of humor always intact.
My favorite part of the panel had to be when Sam Eagle just gushed about how he bonded with Ty Burrell in the film and howTy's accent was so good that Sam actually believed that Ty was French. (I know. It feels a little surreal writing this.) But that's what made the day so lovely. We all embraced the Muppets as the real characters they are to all of us.
Finally Sam excused himself announcing to us that he had been summoned by hotel security and was mindful of keeping all of us journalists safe. Off he went.
The vacancy in the panel was soon filled as Miss Piggy, fashionably late (of course) swished in and made a fashion statement in a gorgeous purple gown.
You can totally picture it, can't you? I know. Shut up.
I suppose I could pull some of the more memorable quotes from the film makers and stars talent, but my take-away from the day was that I was not the only über-fan. It was obvious that everyone who worked on the picture had the same reverence for Jim Henson's legacy and the very real characters people he created so many years ago.
I am a writer, of course. I have been sharing my life and thoughts right here in this space for years. But a journalist? I still have a lot to learn. I am, in fact, pretty green.
And you know what Kermit says about being green... (<--yeah. I went there.)
I'm so very grateful to Disney Pictures for allowing me to participate in this über-memorable event.
Muppets Most Wanted opens in theaters on Friday, March 21st, 2014.