Just because Elmo may have temporarily lost his voice doesn't mean he's going anywhere.
That's the word from Hasbro, the toy company that makes all sorts of playthings based on the Sesame Street character.
While Hasbro undoubtedly isn't tickled by the controversy surrounding Kevin Clash—the puppeteer behind the squeaky-voiced furry guy who abruptly resigned from Sesame Workshop after being accused of an inappropriate relationship with a minor—the company subsequently issued a statement saying it had no plans to discontinue its line of Elmo toys.
"Sesame Street and its wonderful characters have been entertaining and educating children and families for more than 40 years," a Hasbro spokeswoman told E! News. "We are confident that Elmo will remain an integral part of Sesame Street and that Sesame Street toys will continue to delight children for years to come."
That means Elmo fans can rest easy. The beloved Muppet monster with the big orange nose will remain on store shelves in a variety of fun-filled forms for preschoolers this holiday shopping season.
Such toys include Hasbro's Ready for School Elmo doll (retailing for $29.99), Hasbro's Sesame Street Playskool Let's Rock set ($39.99) and one of the toy manufacturing giant's biggest sellers, the Playskool Sesame Street LOL Elmo (which retails for $39.99).
The latter, which cracks jokes and rolls and shakes with laughter when he thinks something's funny, is a successor of sorts to Hasbro's mega-popular Tickle Me Elmo, which, when it was released before Christmas 1996, was in such high demand that it caused stampedes at midnight madness sales as parents literally fought over it.