Long-time Kermit The Frog puppeteer and voice actor leaves role after 27 years

Kermit The Frog in The Muppets. Steve Whitmire had voiced the iconic green felt puppet since its creator and original puppeteer Jim Henson died in 1990.
Kermit The Frog in The Muppets. Steve Whitmire had voiced the iconic green felt puppet since its creator and original puppeteer Jim Henson died in 1990.PHOTO: DISNEY ENTERPRISES

LOS ANGELES - The longtime puppeteer and voice actor of Kermit The Frog, Steve Whitmire, is leaving the role after 27 years.

Taking over the role will be Matt Vogel, who will debut as the new Kermit in a Muppets Thought Of The Week video next week, according to online reports. Vogel previously voiced Kermit's evil doppelganger Constantine in the 2014 Muppets Most Wanted film.

It is not made known why Whitmire has left the Muppets franchise. The 57-year-old has voiced the iconic green felt puppet since its creator and original puppeteer Jim Henson died in 1990.