files/pictures/picture-35.jpgDIC Ent. (DIC) has been named by HandMade Group as the exclusive worldwide licensing agent for the evergreen girl's property, ELOISE and all the ELOISE rights controlled by HandMade.
DIC adds the evergreen ELOISE property to its catalog of brands the company represents STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE, McDonald's, MADELINE and Mommy & Me. DIC will develop a comprehensive licensing and merchandising program for ELOISE targeting girls 4-8 across key categories (excluding entertainment), including toys, books, apparel, accessories and more. The initial rollout of the merchandise program is anticipated for spring 2008. DIC's consumer products program for ELOISE will coincide with the release of a new live-action feature film, ELOISE IN PARIS, in 2008. Additionally, a Broadway show is in development.
"The timing to launch ELOISE into the marketplace is ideal with the premieres of a new movie and Broadway show slated next year providing the opportunity to build awareness of the brand, and we look forward to introducing this classic brand to a new generation of young girls," commented Andy Heyward, chairman/ceo, DIC. "As we build our brand management business globally, our strategy is to continue to fortify our catalog with properties such as Eloise and STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE that have a built-in brand equity and can be exploited across multiple platforms."
"I am very excited about this opportunity. ELOISE is an exciting property with massive potential worldwide. ELOISE is a famous children's book character in the U.S., and we intend to replicate that globally and make the merchandise available worldwide," said David Ravden, ceo, HandMade. "We look forward to the value that our partnership with DIC will bring to our company and the ELOISE brand."
In 2003, HandMade produced two Emmy Award-winning television movies starring Julie Andrews (Emmy-Award nominated for her role), ELOISE AT THE PLAZA and ELOISE AT CHRISTMASTIME for broadcast by ABC's Wonderful World of Disney. Buena Vista Home Ent. subsequently released the two titles on DVD, which to date, have sold more than one million units in the U.S. Additionally, HandMade Films and Film Roman produced a 13 episode animated television series for ELOISE that premiered in 2006 on Starz Kids and the Family Channel in the U.S.
In 2005, Simon & Schuster began publishing ELOISE stories "in the style of Kay Thompson and Hilary Knight" (original author and illustrator, respectively) to their early-reader Ready-to-Reads line. By the end of this year, 11 titles will have been released in that line. Other modern ELOISE titles released by the publisher include ELOISE'S GUIDE TO LIFE (2000), ELOISE AT CHRISTMAS (2003), ELOISE'S WHAT I ABSOLUTELY LOVE LOVE LOVE (2005) and LOVE & KISSES, ELOISE (2005), all have reached #1 on the children's bestseller lists in the U.S, and ELOISE TAKES A BAWTH (2002), which remained at the top of the children's bestseller list for 10 weeks. The most recent book, ELOISE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD, was published in November 2006.
DIC Ent., a fully-integrated global brand management company, is dedicated to creating, developing, producing, distributing, marketing and merchandising family-based intellectual properties. DIC is headquartered in Burbank, California, with offices in New York, Paris and London. For more information, visit www.dicentertainment.com
HandMade Plc, which encompasses HandMade Films Int'l and HandMade Film Prods., is a content and international rights owning and film production company with one of the U.K.'s largest independent film libraries. HandMade acquires, owns and exploits intellectual property rights, comprising film, TV and theatrical productions, book and music rights, and merchandising.