In the lead-up to Toy Fair, Warner Bros. Consumer Products (WBCP) has signed numerous new global licensees to many of its hit kids IP, and the company has promoted Ana de Castro from WBCP’s SVP of business and legal affairs to Warner Bros. Entertainment’s SVP and deputy general counsel.
Some of the key properties and corresponding licensing deals are:
Godzilla – Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures are premiering their new Godzilla theatrical feature on May 16 and have assigned master toy partner Bandai America Incorporated to launch a new toy line-up. Other licensees include Jakks Pacific (large-scale figures, assorted toys), Rubie’s (costumes), NECA (novelty/collector toys) and Sideshow Collectibles (statues).
The Hobbit: There and Back Again – Peter Jackson’s final journey back to Middle Earth, which comes out December 2014 from co-producers MGM and New Line Cinema, will be accompanied by licensees such as co-master toy partners The Bridge Direct and Vivid Group (figures), The LEGO Group (construction sets), Rubie’s (costumes), NECA (HeroClix figures, Cryptozoic and Kosmos (board games) and Ravensburger (2D and 3D puzzles and card games).
Batman and DC Super Friends – For 2014, Mattel is on-board for the evergreen Caped Crusader toy line (lights and sounds 10-inch core figures, Hot Wheels Batmobile assortment, figures). LEGO Group and Rubie’s will also launch new products this year. For DC Super Friends, Fisher-Price is set to expand its preschool Imaginext toy line across Europe and around the world after already finding success in the US, UK, Brazil, Mexico, Australia and Spain. LEGO Group is also expanding its LEGO DC Comics line-up with four new Batman sets, a junior’s line and three new DC Comics-branded LEGO Duplo sets. Mattel is readying a line of 6-inch collectible figures and smaller action figures while Jakks Pacific is on for large scale figures, plug and play games and flashlights.
Classic animated properties – For The Looney Tunes Show, licensees launching new products include US master toy partner The Bridge Direct (talking plush and collectible figures) and UK master toy licensee Character Group (interactive plush, construction playsets, figures, traditional plush).
Partners introducing new products for Scooby-Doo and the Gang include global master toy licensee Character Group (figures, vehicles, playsets, construction sets for the US and EMEA), Mattel (Hot Wheels) and Rubie’s (costumes).
Jumping on board the brand new upcoming animated TV series The Tom and Jerry Show are North American master toy partner Jazwares and Giochi Preziosi in Western Europe and Turkey (figures, playsets, games).
In other WBCP news, de Castro, in her new role, will be responsible for leading the studio’s legal functions and will work alongside Warner Bros. Entertainment’s EVP and general counsel John Rogovin.
She first joined WBCP 18 years ago and held her most recent position since 2007.