Skip to comments.Don't tell Mitt! The actor who brought Big Bird to life makes $314,000 a year
Posted on 10/11/2012 12:47:43 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
It looks like Mitt Romney was on to something when he promised to fire Big Bird during his first presidential debate: Big Bird makes big bucks!
Tax returns from PBS's Sesame Workshop show that the television show shelled out at least $314,072 for the actor behind Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch.
That makes Caroll Spinney, who has played everyone's favorite yellow-feathered friend since 1969, a true blue member of the One Percent.
But Mr Spinney isn't even the highest paid member of the puppetry staff. Jospeh Mazzarino, who plays Murray, Stinky the Stinkweed, the Two-Headed Monster, Papa Bear and directs some episodes, makes a cool half a million.
The other characters make around on average between $300,000 and $450,000 per year in salary.
The Sesame salary scandal broke when Mitt Romney pledged to cut funding to PBS.
'I'm going to stop the subsidy to PBS. I'm going to stop other things. I like PBS, I love Big Bird,' the candidate said.
'But I'm not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for it.'
The comment quickly went viral, with thousands sharing their dismay that the Republican would axe their childhood pal...
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
There are actors on General Hospital that have to scrap by with $70k a year, and this Big Bird character pulls in this much? Something is not right here.
I have to scrape by on $550 a month. Tell me about it.
Can't stand Big Bird. Barney is gross. Also dislike Cat in the Hat etc.
When my kids were little we had real people like Miss Rita and Mr. Rogers.
Pretend characters were part of the "fiction" world.
Job Ad: Needed. One individual willing to wear a stupid bird outfit for four hours a day, and read a script written for three-year old kids. You must act dorky, flap your feathers occasionally, and show up promptly at nine each morning for taping. Taping will end promptly at three in the afternoon...no overtime. Payscale? Minimum of $5k a week. No cursing or drinking allowed on the set.
"As God as my witness I thought Big Bird could fly."
Big bird could afford a pretty spiffy nest making that kind of money.
If you’re going to walk into my office, the least you could do is come through the imagery door. Rather than step across the tape on the floor which symbolize my walls.
Maybe not Mitt- or Ryan, but somebody ought to be hammering this into the ground & breaking it off. And shouldn’t there be a list of contributions (& contributors) somewhere, it being “public” broadcasting & all?
Does anyone know just how much money SS takes in from all of its merchandising? And does SS pay anything to PBS to have its program aired?
There’s also the issue of Bill Moyers and his many programs. I believe I read a couple of years ago that Moyers makes millions on his books, CD/DVD’s of his programs but doesn’t pay PBS anything to have them aired. It’s like free promotion/advertising for his products.
I found one article from “Education News” that found Sesame Street earned $134 Million in 2010.
I still haven’t found any information on whether Sesame Street has to pay any fee to PBS to have its program aired.
Today Sezme Street is brought to us by the letter “U” as in “U gonna pay Up!” and the letter “P” as in “Pony” since you’ve paid for one but can’t have it.
Big Burd thanks “U”!
IIRC, the guy who does little Elmo is a 6’ +, 300lb black guy
That’s a good question (re both Sesame Street & Bill Moyers), unbiased truth, & I’ve never seen it asked or addressed.
I’ll snoop around & I’ll bet other FRiends will, too- maybe we’ll come up with some answers/ information to share.
It makes me wonder about others showcased by PBS/ NPR. I actually have one of Rick Steve’s books (Europe Through The Back Door).
I wanna grow to be big bird!
I agree with Homer Simpson when he said, “the rich mosaic of cable programming has made public television so very, very unnecessary.”
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.