Cookie Monster Wants to Host Saturday Night Live

Sesame Street says: “Cookie Monster wants to host Saturday Night Live and he needs your help! Click here to join the Facebook group and help Cookie Monster be the next host! http://bit.ly/CookieSNL

Sesame Street to Introduce Three Shows at MIPCOM

The producers of Sesame Street will be introducing three new shows that are currently in development at MIPCOM, to be held in Cannes, France October 4-8.

Super Grover 2.0 features Sesame Street character Grover modeling scientific processes as he observes, formulates questions, and investigates to solve problems across the world. The show will also be featured as a segment on Sesame Street.

Count TV features Count von Count introducing viewers to the number of the day and explaining what each number represents. Each episode finishes with a Bert and Ernie tap dance routine about the number of the day

Goodnight, Elmo features Elmo and his dad in their bedroom routine as they make up their own bedtime stories.

International Productions of Sesame Street Available Online

Amazon Video On Demand is offering exclusive access to free episodes of international co-productions of Sesame Street.

Programs that will be available include Takalani Sesame from South Africa, which features the first HIV-positive Muppet to help de-stigmatize HIV in an age appropriate way;  Sesame Tree from Northern Ireland, which encourages children to explore and appreciate the world around them; Galli Galli Sim Sim from India, which celebrates cultural heritage; and Alam Sim Sim from Egypt, which promotes self-esteem in young girls. Programs from Bangladesh, Brazil, Indonesia, Israel, Jordan, Kosovo, Palestine, and Russia will also be available.

Shalom From Stars and Muppets in Israel

Sesame Workshop, the developer behind Sesame Street, has teamed with Israel’s Channel HOP! to develop a 12-part DVD set about Jewish values. The 30-minute episode DVDs will include approximately 30 more minutes of bonus features as well as appearances by Grover and other Muppets. Celebrity appearances for the series include Debra Messing, Natalie Portman, Ben Stiller, Jake Gyllenhal, and Achinoam Nini, among others.

The first DVD, Welcome to Israel, features Grover and Anneliese van der Pol as they begin their explorations of Israel with guest Christina Applegate. Chanukah: The Missing Menorah takes the crew on a hunt for van der Pol’s missing menorah before Chanukah activities begin and includes an appearance by Debi Mazar. Both DVDs, and subsequent episodes, showcase Jewish values while explaining traditions and practices in Israel.

Shalom Sesame is meant for U.S. audiences and is a continuation from the 1988 11-part Shalom Sesame, which was based on the Israeli version of Sesame Street, Rechov Sumsum. The first two DVDs will be released nationwide on October 5. Subsequent releases will roll out starting in January.

Nigerian Version of Sesame Street Announced

New York-based Sesame Workshop has teamed with Ileke Media in Nigeria to co-produce Sesame Square, Nigeria’s version of Sesame Street. The 30-minute program will focus on preschool issues while two Muppet hosts encourage counting, reading, and staying in school.

Kami, a girl Muppet, is HIV-positive with golden fur and an adventurer’s spirit. A blue-skinned boy Muppet is energetic and loves making even trivial tasks fun. A mobile phone contest to name the boy Muppet is currently underway, with those in Nigeria encouraged to text one of three names–Zobi, Wazu, or Baju–to the show’s producers.

Sesame Square is planned for three years of broadcast, during which two outreach kits will be sent to schools and NGOs throughout Nigeria, meant to encourage literacy and health. The project is funded with the help of a five-year United States Agency for International Development (USAID) grant that will help with the television series and outreach kit creation, as well as research regarding the program’s effectiveness.

Sesame Workshop and Mercy Corp Partner for Haiti Relief Videos

In a partnership announced yesterday, Sesame Workshop and Mercy Corp will distribute three original films based on the Haiti earthquake, as well as two films recently dubbed into Creole, all to be distributed to Haiti’s youth.

Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit group behind Sesame Street, stated the two dubbed films, Cinderelmo and Healthy Monsters, feature celebrity appearances by such figure heads as Keri Russell, Oliver Platt, and India Arie. The films promote healthy eating, physical activity, teamwork, and play.

Along with these films, Sesame Workshop plans to release three live-action films by filmmaker Linda Costigan, which were shot on location in Haiti following the earthquake. The first film, Helping Hands, teaches lessons about teamwork and working towards common goals. The others, I Am Haiti and Recycled Car, teach how Haiti’s children will be the leaders in the country’s recovery and how Haitians will rebuild their country, respectively. [Read more...]

Author Todd Parr Teams with Sesame Street For Animated Segment

Children’s author Todd Parr and Sesame Street’s creative team are collaborating to produce a one-minute segment for the show that will be designed to help children deal with their innate childhood fears. The animated segment will debut on the 41st season (2010-2011) of Sesame Street and will be written and designed by Parr.

Parr is known for taking potentially complex subject matter and making it kid-friendly. His title, The Peace Book, explains to children the meaning and some aspects of world peace, and his most recent title, The Earth Book, deals with the environment and ecology.

Parr has recently announced he has teamed with Stouffer’s to release a limited-edition children’s book entitled Let’s Fix Dinner. The book, published by SupperTime Entertainment (Parr’s worldwide marketing/licensing partner), will be released this August.

Photo credit: HachetteBookGroup.com

New Sesame Street Titles at Moving Picture Books

Six new Sesame Street titles are available for download to computers and mobile devices at Moving Picture Books. Each $1.99 story includes bonus educational material featuring Bob from the children’s show.

The new titles (Elmo Loves You, Rise and Shine, The ABCs of Cookies, Grover’s 10 Terrific Ways to Help Our Wonderful World, What Makes You Giggle?, and Elmo Visits The Dentist) can be viewed with or without the read-along text displayed on the screen. Each book is eight to 10 minutes long and includes interactive questions and activities for viewers.

Moving Picture Books’ Sesame Street titles will also be available for download through iTunes starting April 5.

Dover Publications Creates Sesame Street Line

Dover Publications has partnered with Sesame Workshop to create a line of activity books, paper dolls, stained glass coloring books, stickers, and tattoos based on Sesame Street. The sticker books feature Cookie Monster, Big Bird, and Elmo to teach kids about the colors blue, yellow, and red, while the temporary tattoos—featuring Zoe, The Count, and Grover—help kids learn numbers.

Many of Dover’s new Sesame Street products retail for $2 each.  For more information, visit www.doverpublications.com/sesamestreet.

Warner Bros. Signs Exclusive Deal for Sesame Street Video Games

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Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment has signed a multi-year exclusive agreement with Sesame Workshop for the rights to create and publish interactive video game titles based on Sesame Street. The worldwide agreement is in addition to Sesame Workshop’s partnership with Warner Home Video for a multi-year, exclusive home entertainment distribution deal for Sesame Street’s library, new content, EST, and transactional VOD. New DVD titles will be released this year.