Geeking Out With…Tim Rose!
1. You got to work with two legends in your life. Describe working with Jim Henson in one word and George Lucas in one word.
Tim Rose: For Jim Henson, “Father”, for George Lucas, “Shy”. Neither one of them fit your standard profile for a boss. Jim treated everyone under him with total respect and compassion. He had the ability to make everyone feel important and needed. The kind of love a parent would give to their child. And George comes across as the total opposite of what you would expect for someone in charge of one of the biggest franchises of our age. He is quiet yet inquisitive and gets a great deal of enjoyment from the creative process.
2. What makes a great puppeteer and prop-master like yourself?
Tim Rose: Children instinctively know how to play, but too many adults forget how to do it when responsibilities start to take over their life. The best puppeteers know how to be professional but still stay in touch with the little kid inside them wanting to come out and play.
3. What was it like working on the Muppet Christmas Carol without Jim being there? How did Brian (Henson) handle it?
Tim Rose: Unlike LA, where everyone you’re working with is wishing you to fail so they can jump on your bones and get one more rung up the ladder, “Muppets Christmas Carol” was shot in England using the same crew that had worked with Jim before he died. We had watched Brian grow up and did everything we could to help him succeed. He had the best education anyone could have to be a director. By watching on the set of film after film, not reading about it in books. It was no coincidence that the ghosts of the Marley brothers were played by Statler and Waldorf, originally performed by Jim Henson and Richard Hunt, who were both dead by the time we were shooting those scenes.
That felt weird on set I can tell you.
4. If Darth Maul survived being sliced in half and Anakin survived being burned alive, is Salacious Crumb combing the Tatooine desert? We never SAW him die.
Tim Rose: Oh Salacious isn’t wandering about in the desert. He would have stowed away in the nearest ship to someplace nice and ingratiated himself into being taken care of by some poor soul, while laughing at them behind their back. He’s a piece of work.
5. If you could go back to when your career first started and could tell your younger self ONE thing, what would it be?
Tim Rose: Don’t take anything for granted. I wish I had kept more stuff and documented everything with photos. So much of what we invented is already being forgotten by the next generation. Oh dear, I’m starting to sound like the old guys I was fortunate enough to work with when I was first starting.