Press release from HBO, July 25, 2018:
ESME & ROY, the first new animated series from the makers of “Sesame Street” in more than a decade, will debut in the U.S. on SATURDAY, AUG. 18 (9:30-10:00 a.m. ET/PT), it was announced today by Sesame Workshop and HBO. The show follows a young girl, Esme, and her best monster friend, Roy, on their adventures as the best monster babysitters in Monsterdale. Aimed at children ages four to six, it offers a creative new approach to teaching “learning through play” and mindfulness strategies.
With lovable characters who spark strong emotional connections among preschoolers and parents alike, ESME & ROY invites children into a colorful world where even the littlest monsters can overcome big challenges together. Across 26 episodes, ESME & ROY will use the power of play to help younger monsters through familiar situations, including trying new foods and feeling scared during loud thunderstorms. Little viewers will look up to their new favorite monster-sitters as positive role models, learning how to manage strong emotions with simple mindfulness practices alongside ESME & ROY’s charges.
The world of ESME & ROY is brought to vibrant life through infectious humor, imaginative design and such expressive voice talents as Millie Davis (“Wonder,” “Odd Squad”) and Patrick McKenna (TV’s “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs,” “Hotel Transylvania: The Series”).
“We’re thrilled to present this innovative new series as part of our overall partnership with HBO,” says Steve Youngwood, President of Media and Education and Chief Operating Officer, Sesame Workshop. “Packed with humor, heart, and valuable lessons, ESME & ROY represents the kind of quality programming that families have trusted Sesame Workshop to deliver for nearly 50 years, tailor-made for a new generation of kids and parents.”
As Sesame Workshop’s newest addition to the educational entertainment landscape, ESME & ROY underscores how vitally important play is to early childhood development. Whether they’re pretending to be veterinarians to model how to hold a pet gently, or sticking to a shopping list by turning a trip to the grocery store into a matching game, the monster-sitters help their little friends learn a range of lessons while having fun.
When children play together, they are physically, cognitively and socially engaged. Motivated by their own curiosity and interest, they learn to collaborate, self-regulate, communicate and empathize with others during play sessions. As modeled in ESME & ROY, “learning through play” allows children to develop these critical life skills in a safe environment.
Children are most ready for this kind of engaged, productive playtime when they can manage challenging feelings like worry and frustration. ESME & ROY offers easy-to-adopt strategies that can help even very young children regulate their emotions. Tactics include: taking slow belly breaths, which provide a pause for children to be reflective instead of reactive; self-talk that uses positive statements to remind kids of their strength and capability; giving oneself a soothing hug; and using a “glitter jar” to calm the body and mind, shaking a sparkly snow globe-like jar and taking deep breaths while watching the glitter swirl and slowly fall.
“We can’t wait to share the vibrant and textured world of ESME & ROY with kids,” says Kay Wilson Stallings, SVP, Creative Development, Sesame Workshop. “By incorporating the latest thinking about mindfulness and learning through play into the fabric of this show, we hope to reinvigorate playtime and give today’s kids the tools they need to manage their emotions in a positive way.”
Created by TV veterans Dustin Ferrer and Amy Steinberg (“Peg + Cat,” “Team Umizoomi,” “Wonder Pets!,” “Shimmer and Shine”), ESME & ROY is produced in partnership with Corus Entertainment’s animation studio, Nelvana, with illustrations inspired by renowned artist Dankerleroux.