Sky1 Acquires UK Rights To ABC’s ‘The Muppets’

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The Muppets (FT)

Sky1 has secured the exclusive first run UK broadcast rights to ABC’s reboot of The Muppets after striking a deal with international distributor Disney Media Distribution, TVWise has learned. The show’s first season is expected to premiere later this year, shortly after it debuts on ABC in the US.

From Bill Prady and Bob Kushell, The Muppets returns to prime time with a contemporary, documentary-style show that, for the first time ever, will explore the Muppets’ personal lives and relationships, both at home and at work, as well as romances, break-ups, achievements, disappointments, wants and desires; a more adult Muppet show, for kids of all ages. ABC Studios and The Muppets Studio are producing with Prady, Kushell, Randall Einhorn and Bill Barretta executive producing.

Notably, this marks the first deal that a UK broadcaster has struck for a new show from the upcoming 2015-2016 season since the LA Screenings back in May. The Muppets was always considered a lock for a UK sale, however, with numerous UK broadcasters including the BBC and ITV having expressed some interest in the show. Sky announced the acquisitions during an event in which they presented their programming line-up for the next year (more on that later).

The Muppets“Get ready to see the Muppets like you’ve never seen them before – with no-holds-barred access as they prepare for their big reunion, The Muppets promises a candid look at what goes on before and after they start the music and light the lights!”, said Adam MacDonald, Director of Sky1.

The Muppets joins a line-up of exclusive first run acquisitions on Sky1 that includes Modern Family, Arrow, The Flash, Hawaii Five-0, NCIS: Los Angeles, The Simpsons, The Last Ship and Legends. Sky’s deal for The Muppets, which was negotiated by Senior Acquisitions Manager Lucy Criddle, comes just over a week after they closed a deal with CBS Studios International to acquire the James Patterson series Zoo.

“The addition of The Muppets to Sky’s schedule builds on our long, successful relationship with the UK broadcaster”, added Dayna Donaldson, General Manager of Disney Media Distribution for the UK and Ireland. “We are delighted to bring the much-loved characters and universally cheeky storylines to Sky’s already powerful slate of Disney content across the Sky portfolio, including Sky Movies Disney and ABC Studios’ Scandal and Criminal Minds.”

Check out the video announcement from Miss Piggy below: