Warner Home Video Gets ‘Sesame Street’ Distribution Rights

Deal covers Sesame Workshop show’s library, new content and digital downloads.

Last Updated: October 15, 2009 @ 6:39 PM

Big Bird, Oscar the Grouch and Cookie Monster have a new home for home entertainment.

Warner Home Video has entered into a multiyear, exclusive home entertainment distribution deal with Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind "Sesame Street," the companies announced Thursday. The arrangement goes into effect in January.

"Sesame Street’s" previous distributor, the Weinstein Co.’s Genius Products, was plagued by financial problems, ultimately selling its rights to distribute "Sesame Street" to Vivendi Entertainment in September of this year.

“The association between Warner Home Video and Sesame Workshop builds our leadership position in the family and animation segment," said Jeff Brown, executive vice president at Warner Home Video. "We look forward to the opportunity to work with this extremely popular brand and further its success in the marketplace.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Warner will exclusively distribute multiple "Sesame Street" titles. The deal covers the "Sesame Street" library, new content and other platforms besides DVD and Blu-ray, including digital downloads. Warner also will handle distribution in the United States and Canada.

“Warner Bros.’ unique combination of physical media distribution, digital distribution and videogames under one roof affords a unique opportunity for Sesame Workshop to continue its mission of educating children around the world,” said Terry Fitzpatrick, executive vice president of distribution at Sesame Workshop.

Warner Home Video has signed similar agreements with the BBC, Dr. Seuss, Popeye, Peanuts, Lucasfilm and Scholastic.

Vivendi will distribute "Sesame Street: 40 Years of Sunny Days," due out Nov. 10.

Warner’s first "Sesame Street" release, "Elmo’s World: Let’s Play Music," is scheduled for a February bow. The studio plans to release up to 10 "Sesame Street" titles per year.