More than 50 years after its debut, Sesame Street is getting a makeover.
On October 30, The Hollywood Reporter announced in an exclusive that long-time children's television show Sesame Street is leaving its 'magazine' format (with a focus on unlinked segments) for two longer 11-minute narrative-driven segments and a new five-minute animated segment titled Tales from 123 in between. There will also now be a signature song in each episode. These changes will begin in the show's 56th season, debuting in 2025.
This is the second big change to Sesame Street in the last 10 years, as in 2016, the show shortened its traditional runtime from 60 minutes to 30 minutes.
About the change, Sesame Workshop Executive VP and Chief Creative Development and Production officer Kay Wilson Stallings told the Hollywood Reporter that they were inspired co-creator of Sesame street Joan Ganz Cooney, who wanted the show to remain contemporary. Wilson Stallings said that Ganz Cooney "always talked about Sesame Street as being like an experiment,” with an emphasis on regularly checking in and evolving the show.
It's worth nothing that Sesame Workshop is almost at the end of its five-year deal with Warner Bros Discovery, though Sesame Workshop CEO Steve Youngwood told THR that the deal has little to do with the change, “The fact that it aligns with where we go after the current Warner deal is over, it just happens to be where the timing is... We always want to be relevant to the audience."
However, it's likely that a makeover could help with sales and new deals. When you've been around for half a century and are heading back to the market, a fresh coat of pizazz and some new sparkly songs probably won't hurt.