Showbiz veteran, reluctant ladies’ man and all-round gentlefrog, Kermit the Frog made being green cool long before DiCaprio rocked up in a Prius. Now he’s back opposite Jason Segel and Amy Adams in his first major motion picture for a decade. But what’s going on with Miss Piggy?
Kermit, you always look good. What’s your secret?
“Being an amphibian, I find it’s nice to stay moist. Ladies are very attracted to good quality skin — green skin. Pond scum works. It may not sound so appealing, but it exfoliates the skin, opens up the pores and makes you green.”
Can nice guys ever get far in Hollywood?
“It’s tough, especially when you’re as low on the food chain as I am. I find it’s a lot like the swamp, there are a lot of snakes and rats, but if you know how to navigate through, you can make it. Look at Jimmy Stewart and Tom Hanks. Also, I don’t stay in Hollywood when I’m not working. I go back to the swamp and just hang out with family, y’know? We’re at 3,265 brothers and sisters and counting.”
You’ve appeared in many movies, but you’ve always played a frog. Are you creatively frustrated?
“I’m fine with where I am in the showbiz hierarchy, but I think I could probably expand. I’ve considered going after some of those leading man roles. The ones Tom Cruise goes after… or Harrison Ford. You know 24? I’m gonna try and get that, if Kiefer doesn’t make it.”
You’ve met a great many beautiful, talented women over the years such as Deborah Harry and Penélope Cruz. Who was your favourite?
“That’s a great way to get in trouble in Hollywood, to have a favourite. I think regardless of all the many beautiful women, I’m obliged to say Miss Piggy for self-preservation reasons.”
Speaking of Miss Piggy, she’s been in and out of your life for a while now. Why are you so afraid of commitment?
“Well... er… she’s a pig. And I’m a frog. And I mean that in the nicest possible way. We’re from two totally different worlds. She won’t come over to the swamp, which is where I always want to go. We have a few things to iron out, y’know? But we’re gonna stick with it.”
Has the Muppets’ dynamic changed over the years?
“A little bit. Fozzie would like to direct now. Gonzo has matured significantly. He lives in a big mobile home with Camilla the Chicken up in northern California and they have free-range chickens. But The Muppets are The Muppets. We belong together. It’s always going to work.”
You’re a hero to many. Who’s your own hero?
“My ultimate hero is Jim [Henson]. We worked together for a long, long time. I wouldn’t be here without him, nor would I be anywhere else. He said he wanted to leave the world a little better for his having been here and I’d say he did that. I hope that’s what we do, too.”
The Muppets is out on 10 February