Saban Brands has named Janet Hsu as its new CEO, effective August 17. As Saban Brands’ first CEO, Hsu will be responsible for overseeing the company’s portfolio of global entertainment properties, as well as being instrumental in acquiring additional brands and building new intellectual properties.
Saban Brands and Fisher-Price have teamed up for a new line of Imaginext products, inspired by the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. The line will feature a range of figures, villains, weapons, Zords, and a giant Megazord. The Megazord will feature multiple levels of play, eight points of articulation, a disc launcher, ranger elevator, command center, and villain jail. All of the products will be available exclusively at Toys “R” Us in May, followed by a global rollout to additional retailer later in the year.
In addition, Saban Brands has partnered with Bendon Inc. for a Power Rangers Dino Charge product line of premium coloring activity books, stickers, puzzles, and more. The products will launch this month across multiple retailers including Hobby Lobby, Rite Aid, and Dollar Tree.
Spirit Halloween will continue its annual Spirit of Children program, which brings Halloween cheer and festivities to hospitalized children by hosting more than 84 events in conjunction with Child Life departments throughout the U.S. and Canada.
Special guests at select Spirit of Children parties will include Warner Brothers’ Batman, Saban‘s Power Rangers Super Megaforce; Nickelodeon‘s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dora the Explorer, and Bubble Guppies; DreamWorks Animation‘s Puss in Boots, Skipper from Penguins of Madagascar, and more.
This year, Spirit of Children’s goal is to raise $5.2 million—bringing its total contribution to more than $21 million donated since the program’s inception in 2006.
Shoppers can donate to the Spirit of Children program online or in a Spirit Halloween location. The funds raised will go to the location’s closest hospital. Spirit Halloween shoppers who make at least a $2 donation will receive a Spirit of Children bracelet.
All funds raised are donated to participating Child Life departments across North America and focus on the emotional and psychological well being of hospitalized children while doctors and nurses focus on their medical needs.
The Crayola line will include no-mess color wonder products, coloring pads and pages, giant coloring pages, interactive color-by-number activity sheets, and a variety of color and sticker sets based on the TV series.
The Power Rangers items are expected to launch next fall, starting with products themed around the upcoming season of Saban’s Power Rangers Dino Charge.
Netflix will bring Popples, bright and fluffy toy creatures popular in the 1980s, to life in a kids cartoon late next year, according to an article in Entertainment Weekly this past Wednesday. Saban Brands will produce the Netflix-exclusive series with ZAG Entertainment. The 26 half-hour episodes will follow the adventures of the five Best Popple Pals in the colorful world of Popplopolis, according to the article.
Additionally, Netflix and Rainbow Studios have announced an expansion to the Winx Club franchise with a spin-off series, Winx Club WOW: World of Winx, that will be exclusively available in all Netflix territories. The first of the two all-new seasons will be available by early 2016 with the second following in the fall.
Saban Brands and Jakks Pacific Inc. have collaborated on a multi-platform property, Emojiville. Saban Brands will launch Emojiville as an original web series this fall, and is developing a TV series for the brand. The new series will follow five emoji friends in the town Emojiville.
Jakks Pacific will develop consumer products, a toy line, and technology products for the property. Saban Brands will lead the content, distribution, marketing, promotion, and other licensing for the brand.
Saban Brands has partnered with Spin Master as global master toy licensee for Saban’s Popples brand. Popples, which launches next year, is a new animated children’s series based on the television series and toy line from the 1980s. Spin master will produce a line of children’s toys, including small dolls, collectible figures, play sets, and plush. The products will hit the U.S. market next year, followed by an expanded international program in 2016.
Poppes is a comedy series about a species of creatures that can pop into a ball. The characters are the Best Popple Pals, who always want to help their friends, neighbors, and each other.
After more than 20 years of continuous production as a live-action TV series, Saban Brands’ Mighty Morphin Power Rangers will be re-envisioned as a new film franchise. Produced in partnership with Lionsgate, the live-action Power Rangers movie will center on a group of high school kids who are infused with unique super powers, and must harness and use them as a team if they are to save the world.
Currently, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers products include toys, apparel, costumes, video games, and other merchandise.
Nick Jr. has picked up Julius Jr. for a second season in the U.S. The animated preschool series by Saban Brands, inspired by the character created by Paul Frank, debuted on the network last September.
Nick Jr. will premiere new episodes of Julius Jr. beginning this Saturday. The show’s themes will be brought to life with a new toy line from Fisher-Price Inc., the global master toy licensee for the brand, which will include play sets, plush assortments, and role-play items. The toys will arrive at Toys “R” Us starting in mid-June with a full rollout at key retailers this fall.
Saban Brands is partnering with the Center for Childhood Creativity for its animated preschool series, Julius Jr. The Center for Childhood Creativity has been working closely with Saban Brands to produce a series of “Inventing Time” activities designed for parents and caregivers to use at home, and for teachers to use in a preschool setting.
The Julius Jr. discussion guides encourage kids to take everyday objects they find around the house and turn them into extraordinary things, such as bridges, musical instruments, shadow puppets, and more. The activities come with a list of open-ended questions for adults to ask children while they are working on the various projects, enabling original thought and problem solving.