Entertainment & Arts

Kermit the Frog to get a new voice after 27 years

Kermit with Steve Whitmire Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Steve Whitmire voiced and controlled Kermit for 27 years

Kermit the Frog is getting a new voice for the first time in nearly three decades as his puppeteer steps down.

Steve Whitmire has supplied Kermit's nasal tones since 1990, after the death of Muppets creator Jim Henson.

US reports confirmed his departure and said he was going to be replaced by Matt Vogel.

Whitmire has worked on the Muppets since 1978 and also provided the voice of Sesame Street favourite Ernie, of Bert and Ernie fame.

No reason has been given for his exit.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Kermit and Miss Piggy arriving at the premiere for 2014 film Muppets Most Wanted

Whitmire has portrayed Fraggle Rock characters and appeared in films Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal.

He was chosen to take over as Kermit by Henson's son Brian, online magazine Kill Screen reported.

Fans said they were "devastated" that Whitmire would no longer work with Kermit, with one saying they were "trying not to cry" at the news, and shared stories of meeting him.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Vogel has also worked on Sesame Street

Vogel, who voiced Kermit imitator Constantine in 2014 film Muppets Most Wanted, will first be heard as Kermit - the long-time love of Miss Piggy - in a Muppets Thought of the Week video next week, The Hollywood Reporter said.

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