New Yo Gabba Gabba! Products Arrive at Toys “R” Us

Now in its fourth season on Nick Jr., Yo Gabba Gabba! is a live-action TV series and live stage show whose unconventional formula has created a triple stacked fan base. Jazwares will introduce new Yo Gabba Gabba! figures, plush, and electronics to the Toys “R” Us toy aisles this year. Featuring characters from the series, including Brobee, Foofa, Muno, Plex, and Toodee, the line includes electronics such as an interactive microphone, articulated figure assortments, and plush. Visit www.yogabbagabba.com or www.yogabbagabbalive.com for more info.  Check out some of the new products below!  [Read more...]

President of Disney Consumer Products to Speak at PlayCon

bobchapekBob Chapek, president of Disney Consumer Products, has just been added to the lineup of industry professionals slated to speak at this year’s annual PlayCon, which will be held in Scottsdale, Ariz. from May 6 through 8.

Chapek will share his vision for driving future growth at Disney Consumer Products. He will also discuss the recent acquisition of Lucasfilm and the integration of Star Wars into the portfolio of franchises, which includes Disney Princess, Toy Story, and The Avengers.

For more info on PlayCon and its speakers, click here.

Major Publishing Deals Announced for Cut the Rope

ZeptoLab UK Limited and ITV Studios Global Entertainment (ITVS GE) have announced two publishing agreements aimed at the pre-teen market in the UK and Ireland. The deal was brokered by ITVS GE, licensing agent across all countries in the EU for Cut the Rope. The agreements are all part of a major period of Cut the Rope licensing activity throughout the year and well beyond, reconfirming the incredible popularity of the game and its cuddly, candy-munching star Om Nom.

CTR_coverPedigree Books, the UK leading publisher of children’s annuals, will release a Cut the Rope Annual 2014. Pedigree has released a Cut The Rope Sticker & Poster Activity Annual as well as Cut The Rope Super Doodle Activity Annual. These titles feature Om Nom and his friends in their adventures and will be available in a number of major UK retailers including Argos. [Read more...]

Car Enthusiasts Can ‘Supe Up’ their Ride with Design Masters

Young car designers can detail their rides with Wooky Entertainment Inc.’s Design Masters collection of sophisticated technical drawing sketchbooks that put them in the drivers’ seat.  Developed specifically for boys, this year’s new “models” feature a range of Ford-licensed wheels for them to trace, color, and detail precisely to their own specifications.

design masters logoThis year, Design Masters adds The Ford Motor Company to its “showroom” with five debut vehicle models. Each one presents base model vehicles and color instructions for kids ages 7 and up to follow or creatively interpret into their concept car. Artists get to choose the wheels, spoilers, bumpers, and emblem, as well as a range of car parts to create their very own vehicle designs.

The new Design Masters offerings the existing lineup, which includes Lamborghini Gallardo, Aventador LP700-4, and Sesto Elemento sketchbooks. Wooky Entertainment has also launched a Design Masters website at www.facebook.com/mydesignmasters.

The Strong Welcomes New Chief Entomologist and Archivist

The Strong has announced two recent additions to its professional staff:

Marisha Burgess has been hired as chief entomologist at The Strong where she provides primary oversight for all wildlife that inhabit the Dancing Wings Butterfly Garden (including butterflies, birds, and small reptiles), as well as for the aquaria housed in the National Museum of Play.

Julia N. Rossi has been hired as an archivist at the Brian Sutton-Smith Library and Archives of Play at The Strong. Her full-time, two-year position coincides with a rapid acceleration of archival donations, particularly as they relate to the International Center for the History of Electronic Games. Rossi is responsible for appraising, accessioning, and processing both traditional and digital archival collections and institutional records.

AG Properties Expands in Central and South America

The popularity of Strawberry Shortcake, Care Bears, and Holly Hobbie & Friends continues to grow in Central and South America as AG Properties (AGP), the intellectual property and outbound licensing division of American Greetings Corporation, expands its agreements with Productos Panameños and Campestre Confeccao e Comercio for products in Brazil and Panama based on these properties. The deals were negotiated by Exim Licensing Group, licensing agency of record for AGP in Brazil and Panama.

hhf_logo_002Campestre, already a licensee for Care Bears in Brazil, has expanded its relationship with AGP to include backpacks for Holly Hobbie & Friends. Campestre also maintains an established roster of Care Bears products that includes stationery, apparel, publishing, health and beauty aids, and footwear.

In Panama, AGP and Exim have renewed a partnership with Productos Panameños for stationery items featuring Strawberry Shortcake, Care Bears, and Holly Hobbie & Friends.

ESL Charitable Foundation Provides Support for the Play Therapy Access Program at The Strong

The ESL Charitable Foundation has provided $5,000 to The Strong to support the Play Therapy Access Program, which offers more than 500 therapists from across Monroe County the opportunity for free admission to the National Museum of Play at The Strong for therapy sessions with their child clients and their adult caregivers.

The Strong developed the Play Therapy Access Program to provide free museum access to therapists who provide Early Intervention Services and Education of Children with Disabilities (EI/ECD) including speech therapy, special education, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and services for children who are hearing impaired. During each visit, with the guidance of their therapists, children can explore the museum’s dynamic, hands-on exhibits and play at their own pace among other museum guests. The program is administered in collaboration with Monroe County’s Early Intervention Program.

Wooky Entertainment Assembles Colorful Block Crayon Lineup

A rainbow of play opportunities await toddlers and preschoolers with all-new additions to Wooky Entertainment’s Block Crayon product range. This year, Wooky Entertainment introduces a linr full of creativity-centered Block Crayon offerings, including Block Crayon Color & Stow Pony Stable.

The new Block Crayon products include themed playsets as well as coloring book ensembles and accessories that feature the line’s signature color-saturated, non-toxic, and odorless crayons. The range includes single- and double-tipped blocks embossed with letters, numbers, objects, and an array of 3-D sculpted characters. [Read more...]

Dreamworks Animation Acquires IP for Trolls with Plans to Take Iconic Dolls’ Brand (and Hair) to New Heights

DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. has acquired the IP for the Troll franchise from the Dam Family and Dam Things of Denmark, with plans to introduce the brand to a new generation of fans around the world. DreamWorks has named American Girl veteran Shawn Dennis as head of brand development to cultivate this classic franchise.

The Troll doll phenomenon was born in 1959 when Danish fisherman and woodcutter Thomas Dam, too poor to afford a Christmas present for his young daughter Lajla, carved a doll for her based on the legendary Scandinavian troll. The Trolls experienced a resurgence in the 1990s, and in 2003, the Toy Industry of America named Trolls on its list of 100 of the Century’s Most Treasured Toys.

DreamWorks Animation is now the exclusive worldwide licensor of the merchandise rights for the classic Troll Dolls, with the sole exception of Scandanavia, the birthplace of the Trolls, where Dam Things will remain the licensor.

Start Your Engines and Zip Around with Turbo

Turbo is a high-velocity 3-D comedy about an ordinary snail who dares to dream big and fast.

After a freak accident miraculously gives him the power of super-speed, Turbo kicks his dreaming into overdrive and embarks on an extraordinary journey to achieve the seemingly impossible: competing in most famous auto race in the world. But not everyone thinks this mollusk has the muscle to make it to the winners circle, and it’s only with the help of his tricked-out streetwise snail crew that this ultimate underdog proves that no dream is too big, and no dreamer too small.

Check out the movie trailer!

Mattel and DreamWorks Animation bring the story to life with toys capturing key movie moments and characters so kids can play out favorite scenes or create their own adventures.

For more information about Turbo, visit www.turbomovie.com. Check out the roundup of fun, new Turbo toys below!

  • Turbo Shell Racers Vehicles: Featuring character favorites from the movie, kids can be just like Turbo playing out their own adventures with snail racing speed. The collectible character two-packs feature racing action in “snail scale” size that make Turbo Shell Racers perfect for anytime, anywhere play. The complete set has more than a dozen snail characters for the ultimate race showdown.
  • Turbo Stunt Set Assortment: The action-packed Turbo Stunt Set assortment is the perfect place to park, race, and play with Turbo Shell Racers vehicles. The assortment includes two challenging sets that bring big movie moments to life in the playroom. The “Ring of Fire” set has a harrowing vertical loop that must be braved in order to launch through a ring of fire while the “Zip Line Stunt Race” set recreates a key competition scene in the film.

For more information on Mattel toys, visit http://mattelbrandsmedia.com.