Midway Games Inc. has entered into several syndication agreements whereby it will license classic video games for play on a variety of emerging gaming mediums, including Websites, handheld personal digital assistants (PDAs), cell phones and interactive television. Companies that have entered into licensing agreements with Midway include iWon, Heavy, RuneCraft, Index, Pocket Express and Terra Mobile-iobox. Financial terms of the licensing agreements were not disclosed. Midway announced three agreements focused on the handheld/wireless market.
JAKKS Pacific's Flying Colors division has signed a licensing agreement with 4Kids Entertainment to manufacture and market a line of toys based on the new CGI-animated television series, CUBIX - ROBOTS FOR EVERYONE. CUBIX features a world of colorful robots equipped with an emotion processing unit (EPU) that gives each robot a personality of its own. The Flying Colors line of CUBIX merchandise will include activity kits, sleeping bags and back to school items. The line is scheduled to hit shelves nationwide in spring 2002. The CUBIX series will premiere to global broadcasters at MIPCOM 2001.
DreamWorks Consumer Products has named Hasbro's WowWee subsidiary as master toy licensee for the upcoming theatrical animated release SPIRIT: STALLION OF THE CIMARRON. The film tells the story of a wild mustang stallion named Spirit and his journey through the untamed American West. Under the agreement, WowWee will offer a line of products based on the film including basic figures, playsets, deluxe figures, electronic and animatronic figures, accessories and role play items.
Sony Pictures Consumer Products has appointed HarperCollins as the worldwide publishing licensee for the HAROLD AND THE PURPLE CRAYON animated series set to debut in January 2002 on HBO Family. The series, based on the classic book by Crockett Johnson, is produced by Sony Pictures Family Entertainment. The new HAROLD AND THE PURPLE CRAYON book series will include six early reader books. The book series is expected to hit retail shelves in January 2002 to coincide with the release of the animated series.
Target Stores and Nickelodeon announced an exclusive marketing partnership for the fall retail launch of Nickelodeon's popular animated character, SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS. Available in all 1,019 Target stores nationwide, SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS merchandise includes school supplies, men's, women's and children's apparel, toys and more. Select items also are available online at target.com.
The Sharpe Company has appointed Italys BIC Licensing and Australian apparel company Barrymores Pty. Ltd., as licensing agents for Great Britains popular pre-school program HUMPHREYS CORNER. These agents join the HUMPHREYS CORNER licensing team headed by Charles Day, president of The Sharpe Company, worldwide licensee of the elephant character. HUMPHREYS CORNER is based on characters created and written by Sally Hunter in a series of books for preschool children about an elephant named Humphrey.
Activision has acquired the exclusive worldwide rights to develop and publish interactive games based on THE FANTASTIC FOUR and IRONMAN for the next-generation console systems and the PC. These brands complement the company's current slate of Marvel Super Heroes that include SPIDER-MAN, X-MEN and BLADE. Possessing unique powers, THE FANTASTIC FOUR challenge the unknown to benefit humanity. Reed Richards (Mr.
JAKKS Pacific Inc. has signed a master toy licensing agreement with Twentieth Century Fox Licensing and Merchandising for the studio's 2002 animated epic ICE AGE. Capitalizing on the film's three main characters -- an acerbic woolly mammoth named Manfred (voiced by Ray Romano), an un-socialized giant sloth named Sid (voiced by John Leguizamo), and a scheming saber-toothed tiger named Diego (voiced by Denis Leary) -- JAKKS Pacific's Flying Colors division will create a full line of toys and merchandise for the digitally animated feature.
Racing Champions Ertl has announced it will be releasing a collection of SCOOBY-DOO-themed toy cars. The first release will be 1:64-scale die-cast cars, featuring characters and logos from the series. Ten cars will be introduced including a Scooby-Doo '68 Camaro, a Fred '80 Ford Bronco, a Dracula '63 Corvette, a Wolfman '40 Ford Pick-Up, a Creeper '49 Mercury, a Ghost Clown '75 Chevy Van, a Zombie '56 Chevy Nomad, a Velma '67 Chevy Chevelle, a Daphne '68 Ford Mustang and a Shaggy '96 Dodge Ram. They will sell for US$1.49 each.
Cartoon Network is launching a multi-media advertising campaign in Europe featuring The Powerpuff Girls' arch-enemy Mojo Jojo and his plan to bankrupt the Euro by introducing his own currency "The Mojo." Viewers of Cartoon Network's channels in Denmark, France, Italy, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the U.K. will see bulletins informing them of Mojo Jojo's replacement of real money with "Mojos." Viewers will be encouraged to log onto local CartoonNetwork.com Websites to help the Powerpuff Girls stop Mojo Jojo from ruining the European economy.
Nickelodeon and Jive Records have inked a deal to distribute records under the new Nick Records label. Under the multiyear deal, Jive and Nick Records will team for marketing, promotion and distribution of joint venture releases worldwide. The first album due out under the pact is the soundtrack to the Paramount/Nickelodeon Movies feature JIMMY NEUTRON: BOY GENIUS, scheduled to hit theaters on November 6. Jive's 13-year-old pop sensation Aaron Carter will provide several tracks for the project.
4Kids Entertainment, Inc. has teamed with Burger King for a national promotion to launch Kids WB!'s upcoming 3D series CUBIX. The series is the first original production for 4Kids and is set to premiere on Saturday morning August 11. The 5-week promotion will run nationally in participating U.S. Burger King restaurants from August 27 through September 30. Burger King will run national TV spots, in-store advertisements, a kids newsletter and a birthday mailer to kids club members in support of the campaign.
Cartoon Network and Kellogg have teamed up to create THE POWERPUFF GIRLS Pop-Tarts. The toaster pastries contain "Powberry" filling with lavender icing topped with green, blue, pink and yellow sprinkles. "Kellogg is glad this crime-fighting trio is on our side to help ensure kids have a wholesome, fun breakfast," said Kim Miller, director of marketing for Pop-Tarts.
The Frito-Lay, Inc. food company announced that it has partnered with Walt Disney Pictures on a promotion that gives kids free movie tickets to Disney's ATLANTIS: THE LOST EMPIRE. The promotion, which runs through July 14, 2001, began with the movies release on June 15, 2001. Specially marked bags of Lay's Potato Chips, Doritos Tortilla Chips, 3-D'S Snacks and Cheetos Cheese Flavored Snacks will feature characters from Disneys ATLANTIS: THE LOST EMPIRE and give an opportunity for kids to see the film at participating theaters.
Nickelodeon has signed a new SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS licensing deal with the fast food chain Burger King, launching on June 11. Big Kids Meal and Kids Meal customers will be able to collect seven SpongeBob toys designed to be used both on land and in the water. The four-week SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS promotion will be supported with in-restaurant merchandising, the first kids merchandising created by Draft Worldwide Chicago, as well as Web-based marketing and national kid-directed television advertising.
Chevy's Team Monte Carlo and Warner Bros. Consumer Products have announced a new partnership that will place seven classic Looney Tunes characters on Monte Carlo NASCAR racing cars. All seven characters will be featured on the special Monte Carlo pace car leading the pack at the NASCAR Winston Cup race at Richmond International Raceway on September 8, 2001.
New Line Cinema has signed an extensive deal with fast-food giant Burger King to promote THE LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy. The agreement represents the single largest promotional arrangement for New Line and one of the largest programs ever launched by Burger King. The program will span more than 10,000 restaurants worldwide and will run longer than the first film runs in theaters.
Disney has announced the signing of a licensing deal with Kellogg Company, the worlds leading producer of cereal and convenience foods. Available nationwide beginning in May 2001, the adventure of Disney's ATLANTIS: THE LOST EMPIRE will come to life through Kellogg's licensed cereal, free package inserts, free mail-in offers and interactive Website. Atlantean Diving Water Toys will be available in 25 million packages of Kellogg's range of products. A "Search for the Journal," ATLANTIS: THE LOST EMPIRE prequel CD-Rom mail-in offer will appear on 75 million Kellogg's cereal packages.
On April 16, 2001, DreamWorks Consumer Products and The Kroger Co. announced a joint promotion that allows supermarket shoppers to earn free movie tickets to the upcoming computer-animated feature SHREK based on their grocery purchases during a four-week period beginning this week. The four-week promotion is scheduled for more than 2,000 Kroger-owned stores nationwide. Customers who purchase $300 in groceries using their shopper's card will earn two free tickets to SHREK, which opens May 18 in theaters around the country.
Wallcoverings designer 4walls.com has announced a licensing agreement to create and distribute murals and other wallcoverings based on characters from Infogrames, Inc.'s Humongous Entertainment division. The Humongous Entertainment line of wallcoverings from 4walls.com is now available in stores nationwide. "We are very excited to bring Putt-Putt, Pajama Sam and the Backyard Kids' to the walls of children everywhere," said Ronald Soeder, president of 4walls.com.
Big Idea Productions, creators of the made-for-video series VEGGIETALES, has teamed up with Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, for a chain-wide promotion of VEGGIETALES apparel, toys, videos, audio CDs and fabric. During April, more than 2,700 Wal-Mart stores across the United States will feature VeggieTales signage and merchandise. Shari Martin, executive director of licensing and consumer products for Big Idea Productions, said, "We are so excited to participate in this promotion with Wal-Mart, which clearly demonstrates how VEGGIETALES' popularity is exploding across the country.
Disney has signed a new licensing deal with Coca-Cola to place Mickey Mouse and other Disney characters on a new line of juices. No financial terms have been released for this 15-year marketing deal. However, Disney will receive royalty payments for Coke's use of all Disney characters on packages, in-store promotions and advertising. The first drinks, "Mickey's X-treme Coolers" and "Pooh's 100 Acre Wood Apple-Berry," will be sold in supermarkets in single-serve boxes and multi-serve plastic bottles.
Sesame Workshop and Sony Pictures Family Entertainment have inked two big licensing deals for their PBS series DRAGON TALES. Kellogg USA has renewed its sponsorship of the series. Kellogg will be a strong presence in the advertising and marketing of the show, including positioning in the English and Spanish editions of SESAME STREET magazine and a link swap between Kellogg, Sesame Workshop and PBS' DRAGON TALES Websites.
The Walt Disney Co. has inked a deal with Japan's second-largest toy maker, Tomy Co. Ltd., to market, produce and distribute its toys and games in Japan. The exclusive deal does allow Tomy to sublicense certain products to other toy producers. The pact takes affect in April 2001. "This agreement completes a restructuring of our toy business that we began in September, when we established licensing arrangements with Hasbro and Mattel," said Andy Mooney, president of Disney Consumer Products Worldwide.
Fox Licensing and Merchandising will unveil a whole slate of new SIMPSONS inspired products at Toy Fair in February. Fox has struck a deal with USAopoly to turn the town of Springfield into the classic Monopoly game. Instead of coveting Boardwalk game players will seek out the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant. This new Monopoly take off comes after the release of the hot SIMPSONS "Clue" game, which is selling out at various stores around the U.S. Six new Playmate interactive figures will be released including Sunday Best Homer, Moe, Nelson, Milhouse and Kamp Krusty Bart.