Pay-cable channel HBO is getting into the “Sesame Street” game. The Time-Warner-owned channel revealed today that it will license the next five seasons of the children’s show, Variety reports.
“New episodes will begin airing on HBO as early as late fall. And there will be more of them: HBO will air twice as many ‘Sesame’ episodes in a season than has been the recent norm, lifting the number produced to 35,” the story reports.
The news comes on the heels of the announcement that PBS is dropping the one-hour version of the show in favor of the new 30-minute episodes, as we reported separately.
The Variety report adds: “’Sesame Street’ will still appear on PBS, which has aired the program since 1969. But new episodes will first appear on HBO, and then be provided to PBS after nine months.”
Producer Sesame Workshop will also produce an HBO spinoff series, “Sesame Street Muppet,“ Variety notes, and will also develop a new educational series for children.
“HBO will also license more than 150 old episodes of ‘Sesame Street,’ and approximately 50 past episodes of two other series from Sesame Workshop: ‘Pinky Dinky Doo,’ an animated program focused on literacy, and ‘The Electric Company,’ a 2009 reboot of a series that was another PBS hallmark,” Variety adds.