Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Jan 22: The Return Of Pooh

On this day in 2001, Disney Channel debuted The Book of Pooh, a puppet show aimed at preschoolers.
It was Disney's third TV series to feature Winnie the Pooh (the others being Welcome to Pooh Corner and The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh - both produced in the 1980s).
This new series featured a style of puppetry based on the 300-year-old art of Japanese "Bunraku" puppetry. The Book of Pooh was unique in that it was shot entirely against a green screen and the background was dropped in by computer. This gave the show the look of a pop-up book. The puppeteers all dressed in green suits and could only see the Hundred Acre Wood on the monitors.
The series, designed and animated by Chris Renaud, earned two Emmy Awards. Renaud went on to design virtual sets and puppet characters for Bear in the Big Blue House.
The Book of Pooh (which lasted two seasons) had imaginative storylines and whimsical songs and of course ... a silly old bear.

Click HERE for more January 22 Disney history.

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