Kermit the Frog will be sounding quite a bit different from now on. After 27 years of voicing Kermit the Frog, puppeteer Steve Whitmire is stepping down from the role.
Since 1990, Whitmire has provided vocals for the beloved Muppet character, after the passing of Muppets creator Jim Henson. Whitmire has a long history of working with the Muppets since 1978, and he’s also given voice to the Sesame Street character Ernie. But now, Whitmire, mostly famous for his Kermit role, will be replaced by Matt Vogel.
The reason for Whitmire’s exit wasn’t immediately clear. But judging on fans’ reactions, it’ll be a tough loss onscreen for many. Some even took to Twitter saying they were “devastated” by the news and “trying not to cry.”
If you’re one of those fans upset by Whitmire’s exit, you may take some comfort in the fact that his replacement puppeteer Vogel has experience working on Sesame Street. He even voiced the Kermit imitator Constantine in the the 2014 movie Muppets Most Wanted. So rest assured, he is not going into the job without knowing exactly what (and who!) he’s working with.
You can expect to hear Vogel voice Kermit for the first time in a “Muppets Thought of the Week” video next week.
But if you can’t wait that long to hear what the “new” Kermit the Frog will sound like, check out the clip of Vogel voicing Kermit’s impersonator (the frog sitting in the chair) in the Muppets Most Wanted clip below.
It’s “not easy being green,” but we hope Vogel will do an awesome job at filling Whitmire’s shoes!