AppleTV will preserve a holiday tradition as the Peanuts holiday specials return to national broadcast television after all, ad-free, on PBS and PBS Kids.
The company, which owns the rights to Charles Schultz’s beloved Peanuts, announced that they rescinded their original plan to show the Peanuts specials A CHARLIE BROWN THANKSGIVING and A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS exclusively on AppleTV.
“‘Peanuts’ fans will have even more ways to watch Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the gang on their holiday adventures as Apple and PBS team up for special ad-free broadcasts of A CHARLIE BROWN THANKSGIVING and A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS,’” Apple said in a press release.
Apple’s decision to air the specials on PBS came after uproar from Peanuts fans who were unhappy when Apple announced that their ownership prohibited the special from airing on television, effectively ending a 55-year-tradition.
Apple originally planned to allow users to access the specials for free on certain days leading into the holiday. However, many fans called for the Peanuts specials to return to traditional broadcast television through a petition on Change.org.
Movieguide previously reported:
The Change.org petition, started by Michael Nebbia, is addressed to Wildbrain Studios and Apple and demands that Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang return to national television to restore the annual tradition.
“For over 50 years, we have celebrated the holidays with the airings of the Peanuts holiday specials on TV – first on CBS, then on ABC,” the petition reads. “To our shock and dismay, last night it was announced that Apple had swiped the football from us and claimed the specials for their Apple TV platform, leaving us devoted fans who have grown up with Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang in the dark, unable to watch.”
The petition continued: “We are telling Apple and Wildbrain Studios that we will not fall for their corporate greed. But our goal is to get our Peanuts back on television and bring back the tradition! The time for saying ‘Good Grief’ is over. Now’s the time to take action. Now’s the time to fight back! Do it for Charlie Brown and for Peanuts fans everywhere, young and old!”
The petition now has over 250,000 signatures.
The return to broadcast television is a welcome holiday gift for Peanuts fans across the country.
According to Apple, the specials will still stream on their app alongside the PBS broadcasts.
“To complement their release on Apple TV+ this holiday season, ‘A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving’ will also air on PBS and PBS KIDS on November 22, 2020 at 7:30 p.m. local time / 6:30 p.m. CT (check local listings) and ‘A Charlie Brown Christmas’ will air on PBS and PBS KIDS on December 13, 2020 at 7:30 p.m. local time / 6:30 p.m. CT (check local listings),” Apple said.