It’s certainly not easy being green. Voice of Kermit the Frog, Steve Whitmire, has been relieved of his voicing duties. After 27 years of voicing the iconic amphibian, Kermit is getting a new voice in the form of Matt Vogel.
Whitmire had been voicing Kermit since Jim Henson’s passing in 1990, and had worked for “The Muppets” since 1978. Originally, no reason was given for Whitmire’s departure, but the actor has since spoken out, revealing he was “devastated” after being fired by Disney’s Muppet Studio.
Whitmire composed a blog post explaining that he would never consider abandoning Kermit, and that he was fired over the phone with the studio citing that they were recasting.
I have remained silent the last nine months in hopes that the Disney company might reverse their course. Doing what is best for the Muppets is the lens through which all my interactions have been filtered. Given the opportunity I remain willing to do whatever is required to remedy their concerns because I feel my continued involvement with the characters is in the best interest of the Muppets.
He also stated that he’d never “forsake the assignment entrusted to me by Jim Henson, my friend and mentor, but even more, my hero”.
Vogel’s Kermit will be debuted next week in a “Muppets Thought of the Week” video. He’s also worked as Kermit imitator Constantine in “Muppets Most Wanted”.
The Muppets Studio have diplomatically replied in a statement with: “The Muppets Studio thanks Steve for his tremendous contributions to Kermit the Frog and The Muppets franchise. We wish him well in his future endeavors.”