One of this fall's most eagerly anticipated movies is 'The Muppets.' The November 23 release marks the return of the funny, fuzzy fauna to the big screen after a 12-year absence.
The story, co-written by actor/screenwriter/fan Jason Segel, sees Segel, Amy Adams and a new Muppet named Walter play 'Muppet Show' fans who stumble across a plot by oil baron Chris Cooper to raze the dilapidated old Muppet Theater and drill for crude on the property. The Muppet fans decide to save the theater by mounting a stage-show fundraiser, but to do that, they need to reunite Kermit and the gang, who have scattered to the four winds.
In real life, it's also a story of fans saving the Muppets from obscurity. "This is the first Muppet production of any size that is really being spearheaded by fans instead of hard-core Muppet professionals," said Lisa Henson, Jim Henson's daughter and chief executive of the Henson Company, in a New York Times interview in April.
But it's not the only Muppet feature to run into obstacles during production - or to wink at those obstacles in the finished product. In their six previous features, from 1979's 'The Muppet Movie' to 1999's 'Muppets in Space,' the furry troupe was notorious for breaking the fourth wall and commenting on the action (usually, in the form of snide asides by the Muppets' in-house peanut gallery, Statler and Waldorf). Below is a list of some of those funny or quirky behind-the-scenes shenanigans, deleted scenes (including an awesome blues duet by Kermit and Rowlf) and some unexpected legal trouble that you may not have known about. Like a Muppet movie, this list is full of surprise cameos, from the likes of Bob Marley, Queen, the makers of Spam, and former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.