China Toy Fair


Mister Maker Inks New Licensing Deals

Zodiak Kids has secured a slate of licensing and television sales deals for CBeebies’ arts and crafts show Mister Maker. In the UK, The Christy Group has acquired the rights to produce a Mister Maker kids’ dress-up range to launch in Q4 2011. Carte Blanche has acquired the rights to develop a range of Mister Maker children’s greetings cards, which will launch Q3 2011.

Exim Peru, one of Zodiak Kids’ international agents, has licensed a complete range of arts and crafts sets to Hipermercados Tottus in Peru. The range, currently in development, will include stationery sets, backpacks, and lunch boxes. Further licensees in Latin America will be announced soon.

In Israel, appointed licensing agent Hop has inked a deal with Event Pro to produce a Mister Maker-branded mall tour. Additionally, Empire, Zodiak Kids’ appointed agent in Asia, has signed a deal with EEO/Pen2Stage for Mister Maker-branded activity areas in shopping malls in Singapore.

Mister Maker and the spin-off series Mister Maker Comes to Town are produced by The Foundation, part of Zodiak Media Group. Zodiak Kids holds worldwide rights in all media for the property.

Universal Pictures and Walmart Unveil Exclusive Hop Merchandise

Universal Pictures and Walmart have announced a retail program tied to the upcoming live action/CG-animated comedy Hop, the second film from Illumination Entertainment (Despicable Me) that hits movie theaters across the country on April 1. Walmart customers can build their Hop-themed Easter baskets, and visit the movie-inspired “Candy Factory,” with 100 exclusive licensed products, including candy, toys, activities, and apparel.
“This is the first time we’ve worked with a licensed property to brand an important seasonal event in Walmart stores,” said Gary Severson, senior vice president, Home Entertainment, Walmart U.S.
The program, which rolled out March 17 in more than 3,000 Walmart stores, includes a dedicated aisle rolling out sweet Easter treats, and a Build-a-Basket Factory. Toys include character plush toys from Funrise, coloring and activity books from Dalmation Press, bubbles, pinwheels, paddle board, memory card games, etc. from Funrise, and Hop-themed video games for the Nintendo DS, DSi, and 3DS.
Blending animation with live action, Hop is a comedy about E.B. (voiced by Russell Brand), the teenage son of the Easter Bunny. On the eve of taking over the family business, E.B. leaves for Hollywood in pursuit of his dream of becoming a drummer. He encounters Fred (James Marsden), an out-of-work slacker with his own lofty goals, who accidentally hits E.B. with his car. Feigning injury, E.B. manipulates Fred into providing him shelter, and Fred finds himself with the world’s worst house guest.