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Sesame Street (TV Series 1969– ) Poster

(1969– )

Trivia

In 1970, the show was banned in Mississippi in a three to two split vote by the State Commission for Educational Television, an anonymous committee member citing that the show uses a highly integrated cast, and that Mississippi was not yet ready for it. Twenty-two days later, the commission reversed its decision.
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In 2004, Cookie Monster revealed that, before trying cookies for the first time, his name was Sid.
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When Will Lee died, the production staff decided not to cast another actor as neighborhood grocer Mr. Harold Hooper. Instead, they wrote a special episode dealing with the loss of a loved one ("Goodbye, Mr. Hooper"). When the other cast members talk to Big Bird about the death of loved ones, some are visibly near tears. A child psychologist was brought in to help the writers. The episode announcing Mr. Hooper's death was scheduled for a public holiday, and was publicized in many newspapers so parents could be prepared to answer their children's questions. They were very careful not to say that Mr. Hooper died in a hospital, to avoid making children fear going to the hospital. In polls, fans have consistently voted this episode as the most moving and memorable.
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The Count was born on October 9, 1,830,653 B.C.
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Big Bird is 8'2" tall.
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Kermit the Frog was retired from Sesame Street in 2001.
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Ernie wears horizontal stripes on his sweater to make him appear more relaxed, and Bert wears vertical stripes on his sweater to make him appear more uptight.
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To answer the immortal question, here is how to get to Sesame Street: Take the "R" or "V" train to Steinway Street. Stay on back of train. Walk west on 34th Avenue, three blocks to 36th Street. Turn left on 36th Street. The entrance to Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens is mid block (between 34th and 35th Avenues).
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The left-side door in the front of 123 Sesame Street has never been opened.
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As of 2005, this program has won over one hundred Emmy Awards, the single-most awarded to any television show in the United States.
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Oscar the Grouch was inspired by two people. His attitude comes from a nasty waiter that served Jim Henson and former director Jon Stone at a restaurant called Oscar's Tavern in Manhattan. The voice was inspired by a cab driver that used to drive Caroll Spinney to the set every day during the first season.
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Gordon never had a last name until 1991 when he became a teacher. Since it would have been inappropriate for students to call him by his first name, Roscoe Orman suggested his last name should be Robinson, after Matt Robinson, the first actor to play Gordon on the show.
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For unstated reasons, producers have frequently denied permission for the show to be inducted into The American Television Academy Hall of Fame.
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Possibly the only topic that has never been dealt with on the show is divorce. The producers tried in 1991 with an episode titled "Snuffy's Parents Get a Divorce". In the episode, Snuffy's parents are shown arguing and his sister, Alice, is shown reacting by hitting her teddy bear. The script was reviewed by child psychologists who suggested an emphasis on telling children that if their parents get divorced, their parents will still love them and the divorce is not their fault. The episode was tested on children in daycare centers. But the children came away with those same negative messages. The episode was never aired. In another 1991 episode, Kermit the Frog interviews a bird who sings about how her parents still love her even though they no longer live together though it is not directly stated that her parents are divorced.
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Rosita originally appeared on Plaza Sésamo (1972), the Mexican version of Sesame Street (1969). When she joined the cast of the original American version, she became first regular bilingual muppet on Sesame Street.
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Big Bird's teddy bear is named "Radar" after the character from M*A*S*H (1972) who always slept with a teddy bear.
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In 1990, songwriter Christopher Cerf told radio interviewer Terry Gross that the show was sued for $5.5 million over the song "Letter B", a parody of The Beatles' song "Let It Be". The plaintiff was Michael Jackson's music library, which had bought the Beatles catalogue. The Beatles, who no longer owned the rights to the original song, wrote a statement to the court supporting Sesame Street. The case was settled for $500.
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It has been generally believed that Bert and Ernie were named after the police officer and taxi cab driver in It's a Wonderful Life (1946). However, series writer Jon Stone denied this, maintaining that it was only a coincidence. He commented that he and Jim Henson were studying the prototype muppets, and decided that one looked like an Ernie, and the other looked like a Bert.
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Linda (Linda Bove) was the first deaf regular character on American television.
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According to "The Guinness Book of World Records 2004", the show, which has been shown in one hundred eighty countries, holds the record for Most Popular Children's Educational Program.
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It was decided to allow others besides Big Bird to see Snuffleupagus, due to the "Children should be seen, heard, and believed" campaign where, if a child were to report something, particularly criminal abuse of their bodies, then adults would believe them.
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Some classic muppets have been canned for interesting reasons. Don Music, the piano player who would bang his head against the piano in frustration, was discontinued when kids at home started doing the same thing. Harvey Kneeslapper's signature laugh was too much of a strain on Frank Oz's vocal cords. Roosevelt Franklin was considered a negative cultural stereotype. He was the only African-American muppet at the time, and was mostly seen in detention after school. Professor Hastings, a teacher whose lectures were so dull that he'd fall asleep while he was giving them, was discontinued because he was too dull. Some of these segments continued to air on the Canadian version for a while after they were removed from the U.S. show.
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As of 2009, the highest number of the day has been forty, and the lowest number of the day has been zero.
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In 1993, the original set was expanded to include new areas located just around the corner from Big Bird's nest, which had previously marked the end of Sesame Street's world. Among these areas was a store initially run by a character played by Ruth Buzzi. The series format was intended to simulate the commercial-filled world of television, to which American children are exposed, with a main plotline being interrupted by frequent commercials hawking educational concepts instead of products, and simulated television programs. The show also made extensive use of the reruns concept by replaying popular segments over and over, intermixed with new material. As a result, children viewing the show in 2002 will still see the occasional segment that was originally created for the series when their parents were still children. Many songs written for the series are now considered standards. These include "Sing", "Being Green", "Rubber Duckie", and "C is for Cookie", as well as the show's theme song. However, when the show changed formats in 2000, this concept is less frequently used than before.
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When creating the show, executive producer Joan Ganz Cooney deliberately made sure that the human cast would be an ensemble, with approximately equal roles, so no one person would emerge as the host or star of the show and be able to use this as a negotiating tool and threaten the show's survival when it came time for contracts to be renewed, as Robert Keeshan had been able to do as the star of the Captain Kangaroo (1955) show.
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Originally, producers intended to keep the muppets and the human actors and actresses separate, in different sequences. However, the producers learned that the audiences were focusing their attention on the muppets, and ignoring the actors and actresses. In response, they had the actors and actresses and muppets interact in new scenes. Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch were primarily designed for actors and actresses, with whom to work.
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Mr. Hooper's first name was Harold. It wasn't revealed until Episode #871: "Mr. Hooper Gets His Diploma", aired March 15, 1976.
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In 2004, Natalie Portman appeared as a character named Natalie, who was going to run Hooper's Store for three episodes while Alan was on vacation. After taping one episode, Portman began losing her voice and was unable to continue.
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The shoe size of Snuffy Snuffleupagus was 65 GGG.
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In 1976, the eight hundred forty-seventh episode featured Margaret Hamilton reprising her role as the Wicked Witch of the West, from The Wizard of Oz (1939). After it aired, kids were terrified. The episode never aired again.
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Mr. Hooper's store had gone through a few redesigns over the years. From 1969 to 1998, the building was green with a yellow and black checkered design below the window looking out front, an old-fashioned Bell Telephone System logo on the left side, and a green and white striped awning overlooking the front window. Various murals were painted on the building during those years. In 1998, when Alan took over, the front of the building was repainted bright blue. A new red vinyl awning stretched over the front window, and around the corner to a new side window, with white letters reading "Hooper's Store" on both sides. In 2002, the building was repainted a pale orange color. Starting in 2008, Hooper's store got a complete overhaul. The exterior was painted blue, and the awning is tan with red stripes. The Bell Telephone System sign hangs on the brick wall, above the awning that faces the arbor. The interior is more of a convenience store, with refrigerators, and magazines and newspapers on a special shelf. The walls are light green. The store's "first dollar" and Big Bird's drawing of Mr. Hooper are hanging on the wall.
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In 2002, producers of Takalani Sesame (2000), the South African version of the show, announced Kami, an HIV-positive muppet. She was added to address the growing number of people with the virus, including children, in that part of the world.
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In each of Don Music's appearances, an autographed photograph of series musician, songwriter, and original music director Joe Raposo appeared on a wall.
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Sesame Street introduced Julia in 2015 as an Autistic child, with a view to encouraging kids to understand autism. However, Bert was actually the first autistic Muppet. He displays all the classic signs of Asperger Syndrome (now referred to as an autism spectrum condition since 2013). More specifically, his speech is monotonous and flat (i.e. robot-like), his interests in paper clips, bottle caps and pigeons are intense, he does not always recognize metaphors and figures of speech, and has an outstanding ability for logical reasoning. His social behavior is different from mainstream society, as he does not always read the social cues. However, the rest of the cast accepts his differences, thus encouraging the audience to do the same.
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Many early collaborators had previously worked on Captain Kangaroo (1955), including writer and composer Jeff Moss, producer Sam Gibbon, executive producer Dave Connell, and writer Jon Stone.
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Sesame Street: Fire at Hooper's Store (2002) was inspired by the September 11 attacks and was written to help kids deal with traumatic situations.
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In October 2018, Carol Spinney announced that at age 84, after 50 years of playing and voicing Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on Sesame Street, he would be retiring. Because of some health issues, he had already (in 2015) stepped down from physically puppeteering Big Bird, but he was still recording the voices for Bird and Oscar. A New York Times article reported that "Matt Vogel, who has been Spinney's apprentice on Big Bird since 1996, will succeed him in the role." The last name "Vogel" is derived from the German and Dutch word for "bird."
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The exterior shots of The Count's castle were actually night shots of Belvedere Castle in New York's Central Park.
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On August 14, 2012, Sesame Street announced it was holding a casting call on August 20 for a new Hispanic character for the show's forty-fourth season.
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Season 45 was the final season to air on PBS with the series moving to HBO beginning with season 46 with reruns airing on PBS.
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On 22 June 2019, the U.S. Postal Service released a souvenir sheet of 16 nondenominated commemorative postage stamps, each featuring a photograph of a muppet cast member, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the series.. The characters on the stamps are Big Bird, Ernie, Bert, Cookie Monster, Rosita, The Count, Oscar the Grouch, Abby Cadabby, Herry Monster, Julia, Guy Smiley, Snuffleupagus, Elmo, Telly, Grover, and Zoe. The price of each stamp on day of issue was 55¢.
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In 1973, the Carpenters recorded "Sing" and reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100.
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It is believed by some that Snuffleupagus was Big Bird's imaginary friend, since Big Bird was the only character who saw him.
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Sesame Street introduced Alex in 2012 as a child with a father in prison, With a view to encourage children with incarcerated parent (who were behind bars after they violate the law). This was part of "Little Children, Big Challenge".
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See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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