AnotherUniverse.com, a website devoted tocomic books and science fiction, has reported that the widow and daughterof Jerry Siegel, co-creator with Joe Schuster of Superman, have filedpapers with the U.S. Copyright Office which have the effect of returning50% of the rights to the character of Superman to them. (Apparently, DCwill retain 50% interest in the rights unless the family of Joe Schusterfiles similar papers. Whether the Schuster family, or representative, will
Kid Rhino's BATMAN BEYOND soundtrack on CD and cassette was released onAugust 31, 1999 in the US. BATMAN BEYOND is a popular series that is setfifty years in the future, taking place after Warners' previous Batmanseries, THE ADVENTURES OF BATMAN AND ROBIN. The album includes twentytracks. Also, the inlay and CD booklet include comments about thesoundtrack music by Bruce Timm, the series' producer, and artwork from theseries' opening sequence. The CD will retail for US$13.98, and the cassette
On September 14, Kid Rhino will release the soundtrack album for the upcoming feature length Scooby-Doo video, SCOOBY-DOO! AND THE WITCH'S GHOST, which is scheduled for release on October 5. In SCOOBY-DOO! AND THE WITCH'S GHOST, Scooby and Mystery Inc. travel to a small New England town to learn why it's being spooked by witches' ghosts. Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Machine will appear in the flesh at the Rhino Retrofest, August 13 to 15, at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium in Santa Monica, California, USA. Suggested retail price for the CD is US$13.98 and US$9.98 for the cassette.
The soundtrack for Willis O'Brien's stop-motion masterpiece, KING KONG, isbeing released by Turner Classic Movies Music/Rhino Movie Music. Composedby Max Steiner, the collection includes music cues from the 1933 RKO film'smost memorable moments, featuring a nearly 25-minute suite consisting ofpreviously unreleased material. The liner notes includes an introduction byDanny Elfman (of the band, Oingo Boingo, and composer of many soundtracks,including EDWARD SCISSORHANDS, BATMAN, and SLEEPY HOLLOW), and notes by
Warner Bros. Consumer Products has awarded Trendmasters, Inc., a toydesigner and manufacturer, the master toy license for Cartoon Network'sanimated series including THE POWERPUFF GIRLS, DEXTER'S LABORATORY and COW& CHICKEN. In addition, Trendmasters has also secured the master toy rightsfor Cartoon Network's classic characters including Yogi Bear andSnagglepuss. Under the terms of the multi-year agreement, Trendmasters,Inc. has the rights to produce toy related merchandise including toy
THE IRON GIANT, which opens in the US on August 6, will be accompanied bythe following merchandising. On August 3 Rhino Records will release THEIRON GIANT soundtrack. In addition to an original score by Michael Kamen(LETHAL WEAPON, 101 DALMATIONS), this collection includes tracks such asEddie Platt's 1958 hit "Cha-Hua-Hua," The Magnificents' "Let's Do TheCha-Cha," and Jimmie Haskell's "Rockin' In Orbit." Compiled by Rhino'sJames Austin, THE IRON GIANT soundtrack will retail for $16.1998/CD,
On July 6 Kid Rhino and Cartoon Network celebrate tunes from some of thebest-loved cartoon TV shows of this century with CARTOON MEDLEY, acollection of 38 of Cartoon Network's greatest hits. The collectionfeatures themes from JOSIE & THE PUSSYCATS, THE FLINTSTONES, SPEED RACER,THE JETSONS, SPACE GHOST COAST-TO-COAST, SCOOBY-DOO WHERE ARE YOU?,DEXTER'S LABORATORY, and the current cult favorite THE POWERPUFF GIRLS.Lyrics are included in the CD booklet. CARTOON MEDLEY will retail for
eToys Inc., an Internet retailer of children's products, reports that DarthMaul tops their list of most popular action figure characters. Samuel L.Jackson's Mace Windu, despite limited screen time, is number two. The leastpopular action figure characters at eToys are Senator Palpatine and theNaboo space craft pilot Ric Olie. Hasbro paid $590 million, and gave GeorgeLucas a 7.4% stake in the company, for the licensing rights to STAR WARSEPISODES ONE, TWO, and THREE.
Top Ten Action Figure Characters at eToys
IN SEARCH OF THE MIGHTY REPTAR, an audio adventure based on THE RUGRATS,the Nickelodeon TV series, will be released by Nickelodeon and Kid Rhino onJuly 20th. The release contains two separate stories, "Reptar On Ice" and"Journey To The Center Of The Basement." "Reptar On Ice" takes the Rugratson a quest to meet Reptar, the giant lizard beloved by Tommy Pickles andhis pals, at the Reptar on Ice Show. "Journey To The Center Of TheBasement" tells how the Rugrats summon up their courage to rescue baby
Red Storm, which has been broadening the boundaries of computer gaming withproducts like Tom Clancy's RAINBOW SIX, has reached an agreement withBohbot Kids Network (BKN), a New York-based syndication networkspecializing in children's programming, to produce a series of games basedon BKN's series ROSWELL CONSPIRACIES: ALIENS, MYTHS & LEGENDS, a new showwhich will begin airing in the spring of 2000 and already has a two-yearair commitment. The show is a creation of Allen Bohbot, Chairman and CEO of
On Monday in the USA, toymaker Hasbro introduced a series of actionfigures, play sets, vehicles, and other toys based on STAR WARS: EPISODE I- THE PHANTOM MENACE, the prequel to the STAR WARS trilogy. Most Toys R Usstores and some FAO Schwarz and K-B Toys stores opened at 12:01 a.m. on May3, and within hours their stock was sold out. "It was unbelievable.Insane," says AWN's Heather Kenyon, who visited four stores in the LosAngeles area. "People were leaving with shopping carts filled up. It was
Anime fans will soon be able to acquire SPEED RACER toys. ReSaurus is producing 12 Speed Racer and Trixie action figures, as well as Mach V and Shooting Star action playsets.
CINAR Corporation has entered into a new alliance with Viacom Consumer Products, in a move that will broaden the merchandising rights associated with stories and characters created by Richard Scarry. Under the terms of the agreement, CINARs role is expanded from producer of the animated series, THE BUSY WORLD OF RICHARD SCARRY, to a licensing and entertainment partner with Viacom Consumer Products and the Estate of Richard Scarry.
McFarlane Toys, SPAWN creator Todd McFarlanes toy company, has created a set of YELLOW SUBMARINE action figures based on the animated cult classic Beatles film. The toys bring back John, Paul, Ringo and George in all their glory along with the Blue Meanie, and will be available later this year when the film is finally re-released.
ToyBiz announced at ToyFair 99 that they have acquired the license to produce toys based on MTVs CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH.
Joe Szadkowski relates the animated products on display at the latest Toy Fair, held in New York City. Come see what will be on a retailer's shelf near you soon!
Mattel and Nickelodeon have partnered to create toys for the Nicktoon series, CATDOG. The two-headed toys hit storesin March '99. The line includes Pull and Pose CatDog ($19.99), a plushstretchable and posable toy; Toon Team Packs ($14.99), six-inch mini-plushdolls with accessories; CatDog Ride-On Bicycle ($10.99), a bicycle for thewacky duo; and Stretchy CatDog ($7.99).
On Saturday, March 6, Sothebys of New York will hold an auction selling animation artwork from Disneys MULAN. One hundred fifty-seven pieces of art (140 animation cel set-ups, 9 character models and 8 publishing illustrations) will be for sale. Since the film was painted digitally and no cels were used, the hand-painted, hand-inked cel set-ups were specially created for the auction by Disney artists and are accompanied by original backgrounds or production overlays that were used in the film.
The animation art gallery, American Royal Arts (ARA), has been selected as the exclusive distributor of limited edition cels and fine art giclees for DreamWorks SKGs The Prince of Egypt. The pieces range anywhere in price from $345 to $1575 and feature classic moments from the film.
The United States Postal Service (USPS) has announced that Sylvester and Tweety were the most popular stamp of 1998. Over 37.9 million commemorative stamps of the bird and cat duo were saved by collectors. The USPS measures a stamp's popularity by the number saved - not used - through quarterly surveys sent to American households. The Postal Service issues 40-45 billion stamps in an average year, the majority of which are intended for day-to-day usage. Other top stamps included the Celebrate the Century sets from the 1900s, 1920s and 1930s, as well as the Classic Movie Monsters stamp set.
Sony Signatures' Film and Television division has named Hasbro, Inc. as the master toy licensee for the holiday '99 Columbia Pictures live-action/visual effects film, "Stuart Little." Hasbro will produce everything from plush toys to interactive software. The film is based on the classic E.B. White book of the same name about a mouse who is raised by the Littles, a human family who learns to dream big and live large when they think little.
The largest worldwide licensing event is set to take place at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City, New York on June 8-10, 1999. The convention has moved to the main exhibit hall, the premiere space in the Convention Center, to better accommodate the many companies that will exhibit there, including Universal, Warner Bros., Nickelodeon, MTV, Harvey, Jim Henson, Mattel, Hasbro, and Polygram, among others.
The Burger King tie-in with Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies The Rugrats Movie has done wonders for the fast-food chain by boosting sales and increasing traffic to near record levels in U.S. Burger Kings. In the first week of sales, Rugrats-themed Kids Meals and watches topped some of the companys greatest promotions ever, including The Lion King and Pocahontas, which ended up selling 50 and 55 million premiums respectively.
Speed Racer Enterprises, Inc., owners of the Speed Racer property, have signed a license agreement with toymaker Playing Mantis, to produce a line of action figures and vehicles based on the popular 1960s animated series. Playing Mantis, a Speed Racer licensee since 1993, has already produced a line of die-cast Speed Racer products. The company is one of 30 licensees that will be manufacturing and distributing Speed Racer products in 1999.
On November 17, DreamWorks will release three albums based on its forthcoming animated feature film, Prince of Egypt. The album releases come a full month before the films December 18 theatrical opening. The Prince of Egypt: Music from the Original Motion Picture Soundtrack features performances by Boyz II Men, Amy Grant and the duo of Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey, singing together for the first time, as well as songs performed by actors who voice characters in the film, Ralph Fiennes, Michelle Pfeiffer and Steve Martin.