Melissa McCarthy’s next movie, “The Happytime Murders” will hit theaters in August.
The creators of the educational children’s program “sesame street” is suing the production company behind the comedian Melissa McCarthy’s new R-rated movie co-starring Muppet-like puppets.
In a lawsuit filed Thursday in New York City, Sesame Workshop claims that “The Happytime Murders” is a misuse of the famous Muppets’ sterling reputation in her ads.
Further, the lawsuit argues the “Sesame Street” brand will be harmed by a just-released movie trailer with “explicit, profane, drug-use, misogynistic, violent, copulating and even ejaculate dolls” together with the slogan “NO SESAME. ALL OF THE STREET.”
In the film, McCarthy plays a human detective who teams with a puppet partner to investigate the gruesome puppet murder.
Brian Henson, son of the famous “Sesame Street” puppeteer Jim Henson, the Muppets, directed the raunchy film, People reported. Daughter Lisa Henson and executive-produced the film.
Sesame street Creators Sue Melissa McCarthy’s New Film About the ‘Violent, Copulating’ Dolls https://t.co/edtN4DccML
— People (@people) May 26, 2018
The elder Henson’s Muppets — including the characters Kermit the Frog, Bert and Ernie and big bird — an important element of “sesame street” since the show launched on public television in 1969.
Henson died in 1990 at the age of 53. The rights to the Muppets characters were acquired by Disney in 2004.
Sesame Workshop claims that the film’s use of the slogan could cause “irreparable damage” to the long-running children’s show healthy, child-friendly brand, the Explosion reported, citing the lawsuit.
A judge Friday in a hearing scheduled next week to consider a request for an immediate relief of Sesame Workshop, who had been charged for an unspecified damages and an order allowing the film to be marketed differently.
STX Productions, LLC, the company behind the film, said it was looking forward to the introduction of the “beautifully unapologetic characters” to adult moviegoers this summer in a statement issued in the name of “Fred, Esq.” a lawyer of the puppet.
The Muppets are an important part of “sesame street” since 1969.
“We are incredibly pleased with the initial response to the film and how well the trailer is received by the target audience,” he said. “While we are disappointed that sesame street is not sharing in the fun, we are confident in our legal position.”
Lawyers for Sesame Workshop asked the judge to the STX not to use any of Sesame’s trademarks and the intellectual property, including the phrase “NO SESAME. ALL STREET,” in the marketing of the film, according to the court papers.
The dolls film is set to release Aug. 17.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Amy’s Place is a news editor and reporter for Fox News.