COMMENTARY: Comic-Con Exclusives Bring the Fantasy Home

Comic-Con: A once-in-a-lifetime (annual) experience. Fans come from all over to get autographs, take photos, and experience the thrill of oversized Lego structures and men-in-costume. A place full of Hobbits, heroes, and happiness, Comic-Con allows consumers to share their love of all things fantasy. Best of all, the licensed merchandise and exclusive product offerings are abundant. These products allow consumers to get a little bit closer to the franchises they love, bridging the gap between fictional worlds and reality. From classic brands like The Power Rangers, to new favorites like Game of Thrones, the product arrays are seemingly endless, and everyone comes eager to take home their piece of Comic-Con history. Here are some of the limited edition and exclusive products we were most excited about in our office:

LEgacy Power MorpherThe Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers was by far my favorite show growing up. Though the brand has expanded to include multiple modern versions, the classic series is still my favorite. For other nostalgic Power Ranger lovers, Bandai America released the retro-style, limited-edition Legacy Power Morpher in a Green Ranger/White Ranger Edition. The 24-karat gold-plated Morpher comes with two die-cast coins. With only 1,000 available, each Morpher is individually numbered.

Spider-Man, Iron Man, the Hulk, oh my! Though Marvel superhero merchandise is never in short supply at Comic-Con, the limited-edition Marvel exclusives are always something to look forward to. In preparation for the upcoming film, The Wolverine, hitting theaters this Friday, Diamond Select, in partnership with Marvel, has unveiled the Marvel Minimates Wolverine Saga Box Set. This four-pack features 2-inch versions of Symbiote Wolverine, Spacesuit Wolverine, Ultimate Wolverine, and Logan-san in Japanese robes with a variety of interchangeable parts. [Read more...]

Power Rangers Celebrate 20th Anniversary

Visit our Facebook album for photos of the Power Rangers taking over the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. Itching for some more Toy Fair coverage? Check out our additional news and albums from the week’s festivities on Facebook!

Power Rangers Franchise Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Thousands of fans of the Power Rangers franchise will join forces to celebrate as it approaches its 20th anniversary milestone, at the 4th annual Power Morphicon fan-run event at the Pasadena Convention Center in Pasadena, Calif.

From August 17 to 19, Saban Brands will pay tribute to twenty years of action, adventure, teamwork, humor, and heart with events, including special guest appearances by previous Power Rangers cast members, a Power Rangers Super Samurai cast signing, a Power Rangers flash mob, and mega announcements.  Join the fun as thousands of Power Rangers fans celebrate the past, present, and future of the franchise. For more information about Power Morphicon visit www.officialpowermorphicon.com, tickets available at the Pasadena Convention Center box office.

This post was originally written by Lindsay Gordon and published by ToyBook.com. For more news, visit www.toybook.com, follow The Toy Book on Twitter, and like The Toy Book on Facebook. The Toy Book is a bimonthly trade magazine covering the toy industry, published by Adventure Publishing Group.

Sun-Mate Announces Slew of New Licenses for Entertainment Brands

Sun-Mate Corporation has obtained a number of licensing rights to a broad spectrum of entertainment brands, including Star Wars, Spider-Man, Power Rangers, WWE, the recently announced Hello Kitty and KISS joint branding, and the fashion art brand Public Zoo.

For Star Wars, Sun-Mate will develop ATM machines, arcade-style games, tabletop games, and guitars based on the brand.

Spider-Man and other Marvel Heroes, including Wolverine, Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor, will be featured among keyboards, drums, ATM machines, and other activities being developed by the company for U.S. consumers. Sun-Mate will also develop various Power Rangers-branded pinball game machines, which will incorporate Power Rangers’ themes of fitness, responsibility, teamwork, and helping others.

[Read more...]

Mega Brands Deal to Bring Power Rangers Samurai to Construction Aisle

Mega Brands, Inc. has entered into a multi-year global licensing agreement, excluding Asia, with Saban Brands to develop construction toys based on the new Power Rangers Samurai, the newest installment in the Power Rangers franchise. The Mega Bloks Power Rangers Samurai construction toy sets will match the style of the new series airing on Nickelodeon. Launching next spring, the Mega Bloks Power Rangers Samurai construction toy line will include popular characters, vehicles, and play sets.

Power Rangers Returns to Primetime on February 7

Saban Brands‘ Power Rangers franchise is returning to primetime on February 7 with a new series, Power Rangers: Samurai, to be aired on Nickelodeon. Power Rangers: Samurai will feature a new cast of five rangers who must master the ancient Samurai Symbols of Power, which give them control over the elements of Fire, Water, Sky, Forest, and Earth. The new series will also feature a new cast of villains.

New Power Rangers to Debut at Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade

The newest Power Rangers, the Samurai, will make its U.S. debut at the 84th Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, to be held November 25 in New York City. Using their Samurai powers, which give them control over the elements of Fire, Water, Sky, Forest, and Earth, the Rangers will take their first journey together as they escort the Planet Earth balloon through the streets of Manhattan.

The Power Rangers franchise was acquired by Saban Brands earlier this year. Forty episodes of Power Rangers Samurai are currently in production and will premiere on Nickelodeon and Nicktoons in North America early next year.  After the Macy’s Parade, fans can tune in to Nickelodeon for a special first look at the new series.

Bandai America Sponsors Second Power Rangers Convention

From August 27-29, the Pasadena Convention Center will morph into Ranger Central for the second annual Power Rangers convention, “Power Morphicon.” More than 1,000 visitors and 20 specialty vendors are expected to attend the convention. The event will also feature panels, guest appearances, autograph signings, a silent auction, a costume contest, and the Power Quest Trivia Game.

Bandai America Incorporated, Power Rangers’ master toy licensee, is serving as the premier sponsor and will host a booth in the Dealers Room, allowing fans to meet and take photos with two of the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers characters on Saturday. Bandai’s booth will also display a collection of Power Rangers toys and will offer limited giveaways. Other vendors will include CS Toys International, RedStarRobot, and AnimeBooks.com, among others.

[Read more...]

MarVista Entertainment Gains Rights to Power Rangers

Saban Brands has granted MarVista Entertainment (MVE) international distribution rights to its Power Rangers television series . As part of the deal, MVE will handle global sales of the Power Ranger’s 700-episode catalog, which will continue to expand in 2011 when the 18th season airs on Nickelodeon and Nicktoons. Further details and products will be announced at MIPCOM this October in Cannes, France.

Saban Capital Group Acquires Power Rangers from The Walt Disney Company

Saban Capital Group, Inc. has acquired the Power Rangers property from The Walt Disney Company, marking the franchise as the first property to be managed by newly established Saban Brands. Saban Brands was recently formed as a subsidiary of Saban Capital Group to manage and license entertainment properties and consumer brands throughout the world.

The acquisition represents the return of the global franchise to its original developer, Haim Saban, who introduced the first Power Rangers series in 1993. The deal includes worldwide rights to the brand, as well as the more than 700 episodes produced over 17 years.

[Read more...]