Wednesday, January 28, 2009

New Sesame Street TV Special Deals with Change

Queen Latifah, John Mayer, and Elmo are teaming up for a new prime-time special entitled "Coming Home: Military Families Cope with Change." The new half-hour special is scheduled to air on April 1, 2009 on PBS - check your local listings for details. The program will tell the stories of U.S. service members who return home with injuries, both visible and invisible, and explores the struggles that their families face.

Back in 2006 Sesame Workshop produced a special video designed to help military families cope with the strains of deployment; the resource video was followed-up with a television special (hosted by Cuba Gooding Jr.) entitled "When Parents are Deployed" which also aired in prime-time on PBS. Last year Sesame Workshop released a set of follow-up videos to give support to families that now have to deal with the reality of homecomings and changes associated with military service. This upcoming PBS special, "Coming Home", will be hosted by Latifah and Mayer and will take a look at the issues associated with parental homecomings and changes while also including sincere and touching moments with the Muppets of Sesame Street.

Sesame Workshop is producing this new special for PBS in association with David Letterman’s Worldwide Pants Inc. and Lookalike Productions. For more information on the "Talk, Listen, Connect" initiative, and to view the "Deployments, Homecomings, Changes" resource videos, be sure to visit the initiative's official website at I will keep you updated as more information on this, and other Sesame Street outreach initiatives, continue to surface.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

"Sid the Science Kid" DVD Details

As previously reported, "Sid the Science Kid" is coming to DVD this summer. The PBS series will make its DVD debut on August 4, 2009 with two exciting releases. Since our initial report, NCircle Entertainment has graciously sent us the disc details for these two upcoming releases - including the episode listings for each "Sid" title.

In "Sid the Science Kid: Change Happens", Sid wants to know why things have to change. Why does his yellow banana turn brown? Why are his shoes shrinking? What made his ice pop melt and just how does Grandma make a pancake that is not too squishy or burnt? Sid and his friends work together to discover the affects of time, temperature and the environment with the help of some revealing experiments and songs. The single-disc release, with a run time of 115-minutes, will include four episodes from the series - "My Mushy Banana", "My Shrinking Shoes", "My Ice Pops", and "The Perfect Pancake".

"Sid the Science Kid: The Bug Club" explores nature as Sid asks lots of questions about the natural world. When Sid hears dogs barking, he wonders if they're talking to him. He wonders why there aren't any birds living in the birdhouse he built with his Dad. Sid also wants to know what makes dirt so dirty and what makes leaves so special. Sid and his friends learn all about animal communication, habitats, the earth and plants. The single-disc release, which also runs 115-minutes, will include four episode from the series - "Hello Doggie", "Home Tweet Home", "The Dirt On Dirt", and "Don't Forget The Leaves".

Both title will carry a suggested retail price of $14.99 and will hit stores on August 4, 2009. These two titles will be the first, of hopefully many, "Sid the Science Kid" releases; so mark your calendars and be sure to pick up them up. I will keep you updated with information on "Sid the Science Kid" merchandise and DVDs as more information becomes available.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Miss Piggy Plugs New Book on The Today Show

The Muppets' resident diva, the one and only Miss Piggy, will make a special guest appearance on NBC's Today next week in order to promote her new book "The Diva Code: Miss Piggy on Life, Love, and the 10,000 Idiotic Things Men Frogs Do!"

Miss Piggy is set to appear as a special guest on the NBC daytime talk show on Monday, February 2, 2009! Today, a morning news and talk show, is broadcasted nationwide on NBC -- check your local listings for details. So mark your calendars and be sure to catch this special Muppet appearance on NBC.

And be sure to pick up Miss Piggy's book, "The Diva Code", when it hits store shelves tomorrow. The book is filled with Miss Piggy's personal advice on love, fashion, career, attitude, and her secrets of diva-dom! The book is a perfect addition to any Muppet fan's (or diva's) library -- so be sure to order your copy today!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Sid the Science Kid Comes to DVD!

The Jim Henson Company's hit pre-school series "Sid the Science Kid" is making its way to DVD. The educational television series, which debuted on PBS in September 2008, will make its DVD debut in August with two exciting releases from NCircle Entertainment. "Sid the Science Kid: Change Happens" and "Sid the Science Kid: The Bug Club" are both planned to hit DVD stores on August 4, 2009!

The animated preschool series uses music and humor to celebrate children's natural curiosity about science in their everyday life. Following the daily adventures of an inquisitive youngster named Sid, the show focuses on teaching science readiness with an emphasis on discovery, activity, creativity and fun. The series utilizes the state-of-the-art digital puppetry technology of the Henson Digital Performance Studio, a pioneering system that allows performers to puppeteer digital characters in real time.

These two titles will be the first, of hopefully many, "Sid the Science Kid" releases. So be sure to mark your calendars; and I will be sure to keep you updated with more details - including episode listing and disc features - for these two initial "Sid" DVDs as more information becomes available.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Scrub's Sesame Street Episode Airs Next Week

The Sesame Street-filled episode of "Scrubs" entitled "My ABC's", which was originally set to air on last night, is now planned to debut on ABC on Tuesday, January 27, 2009. The premiere of the episode featuring guest appearances by the Muppets of Sesame Street was pre-empted by ABC News' coverage of the Presidental ignaguration of Barack Obama. However, ABC has assured me that they are planning to air the episode next week.

In the episode, J.D. learns the hard way that not even Elmo and his friends from Sesame Street can teach the gift of compassion to those who don't care to learn. The episode will feature appearances by Elmo, Grover, Oscar the Grouch and others. So be sure to tune in to ABC on January 27th at 9:00/8:00c too see a the Muppets invade Sacred Heart Hospital - and you can check out some promotional images from the show to tide you over until then, by clicking here.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Sesame Street's 40th Season Connects With Nature

Since its 1969 debut, Sesame Street has helped entertain and educate audiences around the world. In the United States alone, approximately 8-million people tune in to visit the street each week. Sesame Street is now entering its landmark 40th season, set to debut on PBS in November 2009.

While recent years have had season-wide focuses such as healthy habits, getting ready for school, vocabulary development, and math literacy; this season will include a focus on nature, and will tie into a nationwide campaign designed by Sesame Workshop to nurture children’s appreciation and love for nature by supporting their innate sense of wonder and curiosity about the natural world. The season-wide focus will weave nature themes more directly into the television program, as well as other Sesame Workshop materials such as books, home videos and toys. The Muppets of Sesame Street will spend the season encouraging viewers to explore their curiosity in the outdoors through hands-on activity, and viewers will learn simple, age-appropriate ways to show care and stewardship for the environment.

But the new season won't be only focus on environmental issues. "Elmo's World", which has been a staple segment of the series since its premiere in season 30, will continue with new episodes already being produced. And ever since the show's first episode in 1969, celebrities have been an integral part of the show. This landmark season will be no exception, with numerous big-named stars set to appear. A promotional image sent to us by Sesame Workshop shows Adam Sandler singing with Elmo and a Muppet dragon during the taping of a new segment for the upcoming season. I will keep you updated with more details on this exciting landmark season as I get them.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

The 2008 Jim Henson Honors

Today The Jim Henson Company announced the recipients of the third annual Jim Henson Honors. The Jim Henson Honors, which was started in 2005 and continued in 2006 and 2007, acknowledges organizations, individuals or products that reflect the core values and philosophy of Jim Henson and the company he founded. Previous recepiants of the honor include author JK Rowling, former Vice President Al Gore, and British entrepreneur Richard Branson.

Honorees were chosen by the artists and staff at The Jim Henson Company, who are asked to nominate recipients who inspire them in their everyday work, maintain similar core values as the company, and of course, reflect Jim Henson's commitment to excellence in creativity and innovation.

In a statment earlier today, Brain Henson, co-CEO of the Jim Henson Company, said: "The recipients of this year's Jim Henson Honors demonstrate true creativity and commitment to innovation. They have raised the bar in their respective fields, from Shigeru Miyamoto’s groundbreaking work fusing entertainment and technology at Nintendo, to the Center for Puppetry Arts' dedication to enriching lives through arts education, this year’s honorees, who so strongly reflect the traditions of The Jim Henson Company."

The 2008 Jim Henson Honorees:
• The Jim Henson Celebration Honor – Shigeru Miyamoto
• The Jim Henson Community Honor – The Center for Puppetry Arts Distance Learning Center
• The Jim Henson Creativity Honor – Shepard Fairey
• The Jim Henson Technology Honor – Spore

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

"Frances" Comes to DVD With Bonus Book

As previously reported, the Jim Henson Company's preschool series "Frances" is coming to DVD this March. HIT Entertianment and the Jim Henson Company are planning to release "Bedtime for Frances", a special DVD and book collection, on March 31, 2009.

The unique television series, which debuted on PBS Kids Sprout this past summer, is based on the popular Russell Hoban books about a high-spirited badger named Frances. The musical series uses state-of-the-art digital puppetry and animation from the Henson Digital Puppetry Studio, an pioneering technology that allows performers to puppeteer and voice digital characters in real time.

This upcoming DVD release will include three complete episodes of the television series - "A Whiny Sister for Frances", "A Cupcake for Frances", and "Bedtime for Frances." Along with the DVD, this set will come packaged with a special copy of the original 1960's storybook "Bedtime For Frances" by Russell Hoban. The DVD will also include several unique bonus features, including an interactive Read-Along of "Bedtime For Frances", "Frances' Friends And Family Character Gallery", and a "bonus episode" from HIT Entertainment's "Fifi And The Flower Tots".

While the set won't hit store shelves until March, you can already pre-order the DVD and storybook collection online. HIT Entertainment is planning to release more "Frances" on DVD later this year, with a second DVD planned to hit stores in October. I will be sure to keep you updated as more information on "Frances" become available.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Elmo Turns Green!

Sesame Workshop and Genius Products are planning to release an environmental direct-to-DVD feature entitled "Sesame Street: Being Green". This all-new DVD will be released just in time for Earth Day, and will available wherever DVDs are sold on April 7, 2009. The DVD features Elmo, Abby Cadabby, Cookie Monster, Rosita and Telly; plus special guest Mr. Earth (played by actor Paul Rudd in a hilariously large costume).

In this new 45-minute special, Elmo and Abby pitch in to help Mr. Earth host Sesame Street's first Earth-a-Thon. Mr. Earth teaches Elmo and Abby how "it can be easy being green" by recycling, re-using, and conserving water and energy. But things get out of control when Abby, in her desire to help Elmo be more "green,” accidentally turns him the color green and can't remember how to change him back!

So be sure to keep you eyes out for this exciting new DVD release, and I will be sure to keep you updated with more information on all the upcoming Sesame Street home video titles as more information continues to become available.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Muppet Show #1 Hits Stores in March

Ever since it was first reported that BOOM! Studios was producing original comics based on The Muppet Show, fans have been eager to get their hands on these all-new Muppetational adventures. Well, the wait is finally over, because "The Muppet Show #1", the debut issue in BOOM! Studios' Muppets series, is planned to hit comic book stores on March 25, 2009! The initial four-issue miniseries, written and drawn by Roger Langridge, is based on the beloved The Muppet Show and will come packed with all the expected skits, gags, and characters one has come to expect from The Muppet Show.

In the 24-page debut issue, Kermit the Frog begins to long for the simple life back in the swamp. As he forlornly plucks his banjo, Miss Piggy, Fozzie, Gonzo and the rest of the gang try to bring him out of his funk. While the plot of the backstage story in this first installment is mainly a Kermit story, the second issue will focus on Fozzie Bear, the third on Gonzo, and the fourth issue will revolve around Miss Piggy.

"The Muppet Show #1" will be released on March 25, 2009 with two different variant covers (see below). And with a retail price of only $2.99 per issue, how can you say no? I will be sure to keep you updated with more information on these upcoming comics as soon as more details become available.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Elmo and the Bookaneers Comes to DVD

Sesame Workshop and Genius Products are planning to release a swashbuckeling new DVD entitled "Elmo and the Bookaneers: Pirates Who Love to Read". This all-new DVD is planned to hit DVD store shelves on April 21, 2009. The DVD features Elmo along with special guest Tina Fey (as the leader of the Bookaneers).

In this new 41-minute feature, the Bookaneers come ashore to Sesame Street, and they want to plunder Elmo's bookshelf. When Elmo finds out how much they love to read, he can't wait to become a bookaneer himself. But can he pass the test and help them find their treasure? The DVD will also include an episode of the new claymation series "Bert and Ernie's Great Adventures" wherein the duo sail the sea in search of treasure. Plus, Abby Cadabby sings about all the words she treasures in the song "I Love Words"! The DVD will also include "Elmo's World: Books," a special installment of "Elmo's World" where Elmo invites viewers to learn all about reading and books.

So be sure to keep you eyes out for this exciting new DVD release, and I will be sure to keep you updated with more information on all the upcoming Sesame Street home video titles as more information continues to become available.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

PBS Gets Onboard the Dinosaur Train

The Jim Henson Company has finalized an agreement with PBS KIDS to debut the all-new CGI-animated series, "Jim Henson's Dinosaur Train", in fall 2009. The new series encourags basic scientific thinking and skills as the audience learns about natural science, natural history and paleontology.

Created by Craig Bartlett ("Hey Arnold!"), "Dinosaur Train" is currently in production for 40 half-hour episodes. The series will join other top-ranked PBS KIDS preschool series including The Jim Henson Company's series "Sid the Science Kid", which premiered last fall. "Dinosaur Train" is seen through the eyes of Buddy, a preschool-aged Tyrannosaurus Rex. Buddy and his adoptive family of Pteranodons go for adventures on the time-traveling Dinosaur Train where they meet all kinds of dinosaurs from different eras and learn fascinating new facts about these incredible creatures. The series' curriculum and content is being developed with input from paleontologists, scientists and education experts, and is being designed to help build interest in life science and natural history.

Craig Bartlett, Brian Henson, Lisa Henson and Halle Stanford are serving as executive producers on the series. The Jim Henson Company is said to oversee all ancillary exploitation of the property, including licensing and merchandising, while PBS will handle DVD distribution to consumer and education markets. "Dinosaur Train" is being co-produced with Singapore animation company BIG Communications.

You can check out some images from this upcoming educational series below, and get ready for the Jim Henson Company's latest animated venture, as "Dinosaur Train" hits airwaves this fall. I will be sure to keep you updated as more details on this upcoming Henson project become available.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

"Follow That Bird" DVD Specs

Back in early-December Warner Home Video announced the March 29th release of the deluxe "Follow that Bird" 25th Anniversary Edition DVD. The studio has kindly sent us a look at the rear package art for this release, which reveals this edition's special and technical features:

Special Feature:s
- New Interview with Caroll Spinney (performer of Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch)
- "Jump to a Song" Sing-Along feature
- Downloadable Coloring Sheets (DVD-ROM)
- Theatrical Trailer

Technical Specifications:
- Original Widescreen presentation (newly restored)
- Languages: English (5.1 Dolby Digital), Spanish, Japanese, Portuguese
- Subtitles: English, French, Spanish, Japanese and Portuguese

Thursday, January 01, 2009

"Muppets From Space" on

To kick off the New Year, Columbia Pictures has chosen to release the 1999 theatrical Muppet epic "Muppets From Space" for viewing on So now you can watch the entire, uncut film online for free!

When Gonzo's breakfast cereal starts talking to him, he soon becomes convinced that he must be from outer space. But when evil govenment scientists (led by Jeffrey Tambor) kidnap the weirdo to learn his extra-trestrial secrets (like "What do you do with a nose like that?"), Kermit and the gang sets off to rescue their friend and learn the truth behind his mysterious origins. The film features cameos appearances by Ray Liotta, Rob Schneider, Kathy Griffin, Andie MacDowell, David Arquette, and F. Murray Abraham, among others.

So be sure to check out "Muppets From Space" on Watch it, rewatch it, share it with your friends, and enjoy.

Watch Muppets From Space on Hulu