Jarrod Fairclough – Sesame Workshop have filed a lawsuit against STX Entertainment, the team behind the marketing for The Happytime Murders. As seen in the trailer and billboards, the films tagline is ‘No Sesame. All Street’. Sesame Workshop released this statement yesterday:
Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit organization behind Sesame Street, learned last Friday that the name Sesame Street is being used to market a graphic, adult-themed movie. We were surprised and disappointed that Sesame Street, a show dedicated to educating young children, is being exploited to market this R-rated film. We immediately contacted the film’s distributor, STX Films, and requested that they remove our name from the film’s marketing. They declined to do so. We take no issue with the creative freedom of the filmmakers and their right to make and promote this movie, rather this is about how our name is being misused to market a film with which we have no association. We regret that our fans and families have been confused by STX’s marketing campaign.
After this statement was released, it was announced via various news sites that Sesame Workshop had filed a lawsuit, claiming that STX Entertainment has made a “deliberate effort to appropriate its SESAME STREET mark, and its trusted brand and goodwill, to promote their R-rated movie, The Happytime Murders, by way of a violent and sexually-explicit trailer.”
STX have released their own statement, which reads in part;
STX loved the idea of working closely with Brian Henson and the Jim Henson Company to tell the untold story of the active lives of Henson puppets when they’re not performing in front of children… While we’re disappointed that ‘Sesame Street’ does not share in the fun, we are confident in our legal position. We look forward to introducing adult moviegoers to our adorably unapologetic characters this summer.