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Image: STX Productions

Judge rules against Sesame Street makers' lawsuit over 'profane' puppet film

The company argued the public would be confused by the tagline ‘No Sesame. All street’.
Jun 3rd 2018, 7:31 AM 18,468 11

A JUDGE IN New York this week ruled against the makers of Sesame Street in a dispute with the distributor of the upcoming Melissa McCarthy movie, The Happytime Murders.

US District Judge Vernon Broderick ruled that distributor STX Productions can continue to use the tagline ‘No sesame. All street’ in promoting the R-rated film, in which McCarthy plays a human detective who teams with a puppet partner to investigate grisly puppet murders.

Sesame Workshop sued last week, seeking to end the inclusion of the tagline in promotional materials ahead of the film’s August release.

The company argued the public would be confused and think the movie was supported by Sesame Street.

The lawsuit argued the brand would be harmed by its association with a film featuring “explicit, profane, drug-using, misogynistic, violent, copulating and even ejaculating puppets”.

The judge heard oral arguments before issuing his ruling.

He said Sesame Workshop didn’t demonstrate that cinemagoers were confused or that sponsors or parents were complaining.

STX said in statement:

We fluffing love Sesame Street and we’re obviously very pleased that the ruling reinforced what STX’s intention was from the very beginning — to honour the heritage of The Jim Henson Company’s previous award-winning creations while drawing a clear distinction between any Muppets or Sesame Street characters and the new world Brian Henson and team created.

In the US an R rating requires that a viewer aged under 17 is accompanied by a parent or another adult.

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Associated Press

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