‘F’ is for fired: Actors who play Bob, Gordon and Luis let go from Sesame Street

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NEW YORK — A veteran star of “Sesame Street” is saying today’s story is brought to you by the letter “F” — for “fired.”

Bob McGrath, who has played “Bob” on the long running series since 1969, recently told an audience at Florida Supercon that he “has been graciously let go” from the show, along with Roscoe Orman, who played Gordon, and Emilio Delgado, who played Luis.

“I have completed my 45th season this year,” McGrath said. “And the show has gone under a major turn around, now going from an hour to a half-hour.”

“HBO has gotten involved also,” he added. “And so they let all of the original cast members go, with the exception of Alan Muraoka [who plays Alan, the owner of Hooper’s store], who is still on the show and who is probably 20 years younger than the rest of us, and Chris Knowings [who plays Chris], who is also young and they are terrific, wonderful people.”

McGrath’s comments were first reported on “The Muppet Cast” podcast.

Sesame Street released the following statement on the firings:

It’s been a rough year overall for fans who love the veteran characters of “Sesame Street.”

In July 2015 Sonia Manzano, who had played shop owner Maria — Luis’ wife — on the PBS series for almost 45 years, announced she was retiring.

The series’ move to HBO was announced last year. New episodes will air on the premium cable channel and then appear on the free airwaves months later.

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11 comments

  • phoenixgirl66

    So now Sesame Street is corporate owned and can only be viewed by families who can afford HBO? This is a sin against our children! Having grown up with the show for 46 years, I’m beyond upset at this. Because I can’t afford HBO, my granddaughter will have to wait to see new episodes? Shame on them! Jim Henson created the Muppets for all children, rich or poor (and I would dare to say especially the poor). What gross misuse of power. Sorry Kermit, HBO now has its hand up your bum.

    • Michael Timms

      Well said, and in keeping with what, I am sure, all those who grew up with this wonderful show, and have shared it with our children, and who’s children were looking forward to sharing with their children. No explanation as to why these great people were let go. Louis at least makes sense since Maria is leaving, they can say that they retired and moved to Florida or something, but I am at a loss as to why both Bob and Gordon were let go. It leaves fans wondering just “Who are these people in the neighborhood” now.

    • superjadey

      Only the new episodes are on HBO. Your PBS station will still play older eps of Sesame Street, and possibly even the HBO ones when they get old enough. They have been doing this for the last year. It is not new. I bet you didn’t even notice a difference.

  • Benjamin Schlechter

    What happened to SS being on PBS? This is a gross mistake. This show, along with Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood were a couple of shows that I used to watch growing up.

  • Diana Junus

    I was 4 when it was first on and it is a shame firing him, I got to meet Bob at a he telethon while I was answering phones, in one of the back trailers , really nice guy