PAW Patrol is — truly — on a roll. This year, your favorite public service pups are turning 8 and expanding the wide, wide world of Adventure Bay to a brand-new frontier: the big screen.
PAW Patrol: The Movie will be available in theaters and on Paramount+ on Aug. 20. When their nemesis Humdinger becomes the mayor of Adventure City and starts wreaking havoc, Ryder and the canine crew kick into high gear with help from a new ally, Liberty. Members from the original series’ cast are featured in the film, along with special appearances from Kim Kardashian West (as Delores), Randall Park (as Butch), Dax Shepard (as Ruben), and Tyler Perry (as Gus), among others.
For a brand that has been around for a long time — the series itself has eight seasons, with tons of additional specials included — it continues to grow, change, and become even more of a preschool phenomenon. But with a huge emphasis on themes such as problem-solving, self-esteem, inclusivity, community service, and teamwork, it’s no wonder that these pups have become a staple in any household with preschoolers.
“PAW Patrol’s universal themes of teamwork, community service, and rescue paired with recognizable characters and — of course — puppies, resonate with preschoolers all around the world,” says Jennifer Dodge, president of Spin Master Entertainment. “Staying true to this foundation, the series content remains fresh with the introduction of new themes, new characters, and the ability to tell stories in new formats as we have done with our 42-minute specials and now, the first feature film. Each season, we bring fresh, new themes that appeal to preschoolers from giving the pups superpowers to taking them into the world of dinosaurs.”
As you may have guessed from the release date’s timing, PAW Patrol: The Movie was created almost entirely during stay-at-home orders put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“While preproduction was already underway for a few months, production and animation kicked off in March 2020,” Dodge says. “Our team and studio partners jumped into action to adapt to remote work, shipping edit suites into homes and mics and sound equipment to the voice cast. Everything was delivered virtually, which is a testament to the incredible teams behind the film.”
Behind eight seasons of TV, major 42-minute specials, and a feature film is a licensing program that brings the on-screen world of Adventure Bay right into homes around the world.
The hero item in Spin Master’s line for PAW Patrol: The Movie is the Ultimate City Tower. This tower is the biggest PAW Patrol tower the company has ever made, standing at 36 inches tall. This vehicle-compatible toy features a transforming ramp, a vehicle launcher, a command center, a suit-up station, uniform storage, pup cubbies, a helipad, a pup elevator, a vehicle elevator, a garage, lights and sounds, and more. There’s tons of imaginative play packed into this tower so PAW Patrol fans can go on their own adventures. Like the rest of Spin Master’s line for the movie, this tower is available at mass retailers now.
In addition to a huge variety of toy offerings from Spin Master, the brand also features home goods, apparel, car seats, luggage, shoes, bedding — and that’s just to name a few. The Paw Patrol brand’s licensees produce pup-themed products ranging from apparel and home decor to books and more to immerse kids in the world of Adventure Bay.
“Our creative team works alongside Spin Master to engage audiences by coupling the core show with new content themes, storylines, and characters,” says Pam Kaufman, president of global consumer products at ViacomCBS. “The new themes not only keep the content fresh, but also provide our licensees with a framework to help bring originality
to their offerings through new and exciting products that tie back to the season’s adventures.”
The PAW Patrol brand has always been heavily screen-to-shelf, meaning what consumers see on shelves matches what they’re seeing in the entertainment content. Often times, the product design and content teams work together to plan out what’s coming up — a new vehicle that’s central to the show’s plot will be central to the new SKUs lining the retail shelves as well.
“We know that kids have an emotional connection to these characters, and they want products they can bring home to play out their own paw-some adventures,” Kaufman says. “The synergy between the content and licensing teams helps ensure we are creating a holistic universe for preschoolers and their families for a richer experience.”
And that experience teaches kids lessons like teamwork and public service that they can take with them as they grow up. The crew teaches kids that no matter how old they are, they can help others (“No job is too big, no pup is too small!”). Yes, the pups are cute and adorable, but they’re also helping to guide little ones to be better citizens of the world.
This article was originally published in the August 2021 edition of the Toy Book. Click here to read the full issue!