"Sesame Street" may be coming back to the big screen after a lengthy absence. Reports state that 20th Century Fox has bought the movie rights to the series and has brought writer Joey Mazzarino onboard to write the adaptation.
The news comes on the heels of the wildly popular "Muppet Movie" film that debuted on Thanksgiving weekend. That film brought back a renewed interest in all things Muppet, including the famed children's series, "Sesame Street." If the film makes it to theaters, it will be the first time in 23 years that the creatures of the Street will be back on screen.
In 1999, "The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland," featured a story based on the furry red Muppet Elmo at the height of his fame. Sesame Workshop, the team behind the TV series, has a history of releasing popular films at just the right time. "Follow That Bird" was released in 1985 and featured such stars as John Candy, Chevy Chase and Waylon Jennings.
The "Sesame Street" series started in 1969, the brainchild of Frank Oz and Jim Henson, who wanted an educational show for children. They realized that the way to appeal to children was to use commercial-like programming, using shorter skits instead of longer, more dramatic segments.
It has become an icon in its own right and is now considered a pioneer of children's programming. Throughout its run, "Sesame Street" has earned countless awards, including 138 Emmys. According to one report, estimates show that one in three Americans has watched the series during his or her life.
"I'm cautiously optimistic," The Hollywood Reporter reader Jonathan Buchanan posted, "but I'll judge after I see trailers and read well informed reviews. I'm hoping it's not a reboot and fits with the series. I'm especially hoping they keep the puppets."
It's clear that fans want to see their beloved characters back on the big screen.
"A 'Sesame Street' movie is in the works! (You're welcome, inner child.) Yes!" tweeted Tim Bryan.
Watch a clip from "Follow That Bird" HERE: