Written by Matt Taylor
The denizens of Sesame Street will have a new home this fall. The beloved children’s show will air its next five seasons on HBO, before airing on its original home, PBS, nine months later.
The legendary series, which has aired on PBS since 1969, will be undergoing many additional changes to coincide with its move. Episodes will now run for thirty minutes, as opposed to the traditional hour, and each season will now consist of 35 episodes, more than double the standard number of episodes per season.
Along with these new episodes, HBO will also gain licensing rights to more than 150 episodes of Sesame Street. The deal also includes 50 episodes from two other Sesame Workshop productions: Pinky Dinky Doo, an animated series, and the 2009 reboot of The Electric Company.
The move marks the first time HBO has purchased the rights to an existing series, and is yet another landmark moment in the slow evolution of the television landscape. While families that can’t afford or don’t subscribe to HBO can still watch Elmo and the gang on PBS, it looks like adult-oriented television isn’t the only thing being put behind a pay wall anymore.