Former eBay president JeffSkoll's Participant Productions is producing documentary The World AccordingTo Sesame Street in association withInternational Street Productions.
The picture will chart thehistory of the children's programme and explore its cultural, political andsocial impact around the globe, and will be directed and produced by LindaGoldstein Knowlton and Linda Hawkins.
In particular the filmmakerswill focus on four of Sesame Workshop's 20 international co-productions -namely Kosovo, Bangladesh, South Africa and El Salvador - where charactersinclude an HIV-positive 'muppet' character used to lobby the South Africangovernment on public health policy, and programming designed to fostercross-cultural tolerance in post-conflict Kosovo.
Participant chairman andchief executive officer Skoll will serve as executive producer on the project,which will shoot for a full year across several continents. Participant retainsall worldwide rights.
"We are honoured tospearhead this groundbreaking project which will both record and celebrate theshow's ongoing, global commitment to accessible education and social progress,"Participant Productions chief vision officer and senior vice president ofbusiness development Chris Adams said in a statement.
"Sesame Street is consistent with our mission to address, throughmainstream media, vital social issues in ways that create awareness, inspireand empower audiences to take action."
Skoll founded Participant inJanuary 2004, as a Los Angeles-based media company focusing on sociallyrelevant, commercially viable feature films and documentaries.
Skoll is also the founderand chairman of The Skoll Foundation supporting social entrepreneurs around theworld. Previously he was the first employee and first President of eBay.
Participant recently signeda two-picture deal with Warner Bros on Syriana, currently in post production and starring GeorgeClooney and Matt Damon and written and directed by Stephen Gaghan; and ClassAction, Niki Caro's follow-up to WhaleRider that stars Charlize Theron andFrances McDormand and is due to begin shooting in early 2005.
Additional Participantprojects include the ensemble drama American Gun, starring Donald Sutherland, Forest Whitaker andMarcia Gay Harden, which IFC Films will release; and the documentary Arna'sChildren.