BURBANK, Calif., June 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Warner Bros. Consumer Products (WBCP) stomps into Licensing Expo 2013 with a massive footprint and impressive lineup of licensees to support the studio's coveted properties. Returning the character to its epic roots, Warner Bros. Pictures' and Legendary Pictures' Godzilla is exciting fans around the world in advance of its 2014 release date. Also generating excitement from fans and licensees this summer is the blockbuster action-adventure Man of Steel, the eagerly awaited next two films of The Hobbit Trilogy, a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), the forthcoming epic motion picture 300: Rise of an Empire, and the upcoming 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz, debuting this Fall in 3D for the first time, among others. Powerhouse properties that stretch from DC Comics Super Heroes and Harry Potter to The Big Bang Theory and Looney Tunes, among many others, inspire a myriad of programs that will help drive the company's licensing, merchandising and retail business in 2013 and beyond.
"Led by the indomitable and highly anticipated Godzilla, WBCP is entering Licensing Expo 2013 with a strong portfolio of fan-favorite entertainment properties," said Brad Globe, president of Warner Bros. Consumer Products. "Godzilla expands the studio portfolio to new levels with the unrivaled offerings now spanning from Super Heroes, Wizards, classic characters and more, to this iconic monster and unlikely hero. We offer unlimited opportunities and something for every fan."
Gearing up for Godzilla
One of the most iconic monsters in the world is scooping up licensing partners as 2014's highly anticipated movie, Godzilla, has a roaring roster of licensees set to create a wide array of product in a variety of categories including toys and figures, apparel and accessories, costumes and publishing and more. Global master toy partner Bandai will release action figures and building sets inspired by the spectacular adventure film. Additional licensees developing product to support the larger-than-life tentpole film include NECA with gifts and novelties; Jakks Pacific with large-scale figures; Bioworld with on-trend apparel and accessories; and Sideshow Collectibles with authentic statues. Freeze will also release a line of t-shirts, while Rubie's Costume Co. will design Godzilla costumes that are sure to delight children and adult fans. Godzilla, a Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures production, hits theaters May 16, 2014.
Soaring to New Heights
Hot on the heels of its blockbuster film release, Man of Steel is wowing audiences in theaters and in store aisles. Global master toy licensee Mattel offers a wide-ranging toy line including action figures, vehicles, playsets and collectible figures based on the action adventure film. LEGO is also supporting Man of Steel with exciting construction sets inspired by memorable scenes from the film, and Rubie's Costume Co. offers a new line of Man of Steel-inspired costumes and accessories. Additional licensees include Insight Editions, Titan Books, HarperCollins, Bioworld, and Kinetix, as well as Under Armour, with athletic performance wear to inspire new feats of strength, and a host of many other licensing partners offering fans more ways to be immersed in the excitement surrounding the film.
Licensees Click their Heels for The Wizard of Oz
They're off to see the Wizard! In support of the 75th anniversary of the film – and its upcoming 3D theatrical release from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment and Warner Bros. Pictures – Warner Bros. Consumer Products' extensive licensing program of more than 80 top-tier licensees will expand with new partnerships. Leading the way is master toy partner Jazwares, along with Mattel, Rubie's, Hallmark, HarperCollins, Lionel, Steiff, USAopoly, Thomas Kinkade, and many more that will be taking part in the celebration. Special commemorative anniversary product will be available across a wide array of categories including apparel, jewelry, collectibles, publishing, stationery and paper goods, toys and games, slot machines and personal care.
The Hobbit Movie Fans Hear the Calling of the Next Film in the Trilogy
Following the global success of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, WBCP's licensing partners continue to keep fans of Middle-earth excited as they await the second and third films in Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson's The Hobbit Trilogy – The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (December 2013) and The Hobbit: There and Back Again (December 2014). With support from co-master toy partners The Bridge Direct and Vivid Group, along with WETA Workshop, United Cutlery, Noble Collection, the New Zealand Post, HarperCollins, Black Milk Clothing and many more, the enduringly popular film series continues to delight generations of fans.
Rise of a Licensing Empire
Licensees are also lining up in support of Warner Bros. Pictures' and Legendary Pictures' 2014 release of 300: Rise of an Empire, which will build on the legacy of the worldwide blockbuster 300. Among the partners creating product inspired by the film are Noble Collection with artfully conceived prop replicas, and Museum Replicas with authentically crafted costumes. Changes will debut t-shirts and accessories inspired by the upcoming film and Trends will offer posters and calendars featuring art from the film. Also supporting are Funko with figures and bobbleheads, Tonner with collectible dolls, CafePress with fan products and Mondo with art posters.
Heroic Partnerships with DC Comics
As Superman gears up to celebrate its 75th anniversary, DC Comics Super Heroes continue to generate excitement around the world and in stores as new partners sign on to support iconic DC Comics properties. Joining other apparel partners, renowned artist and designer Lauren Moshi will create a high-end casual female apparel collection based on DC Comics' powerful female Super Heroes; Uglydoll is releasing adorable and creative plush figures featuring Superman, Batman and more; and pop-culture favorite Pez will offer candy dispensers inspired by the Justice League, including a special edition collector's set.
From Warner Bros. Animation (WBA) and based on the DC Comics Super Hero team, the hot new Cartoon Network series Teen Titans Go! was recently renewed for a second season and has inspired a licensing program with support from master toy partner Jazwares — with a toy line that will include action figures, plush and role-play toys and cool electronics — as well as Rubie's Costume Co. and many other licensees, as the series ignites the DC Nation programming block. DC Nation will also feature the all-new CGI, action-packed detective thriller Beware the Batman, along with an eclectic variety of innovative animated shorts, as WBCP amps up its licensing and merchandise support to reinforce the network's Super Hero fare.
Swinging onto store shelves and into the hearts of fans, the favorite Batman Classic TV Series returns as WBCP brings the fan-favorite characters back, featuring the likenesses of the actors from the television series as part of this long-awaited robust licensing program featuring partners including Mattel, Rubie's Costume Co., NECA and more. The huge pop-culture sensation from the 60's brought justice to Gotham City with its over-the-top, live-action stunts and celebrity cameos as the series still lives on in syndication—entertaining audiences for more than 40 years.
Animated Classics Continue to Generate New Buzz!
Highlighting the universal appeal for the beloved animated properties is a long list of licensees in all key categories, including toys, games, collectibles, apparel and even global themed entertainment to bring these classic characters to life.
Coming off a smash second season, WBA's The Looney Tunes Show, continues to surprise and delight new generations of fans with the characters' antics and zany personalities on Cartoon Network and other terrestrial broadcasters. In addition to The Looney Tunes Show, WBCP continues to support the beloved classic Looney Tunes, with global licensees bringing the timeless appeal to an exciting licensing program. US master toy licensee The Bridge Direct continues to bring the characters to life through a multi-category product line of plush, figures, playsets and vehicles, while in the UK, Character Group represents as master toy partner for Looney Tunes with a collection of interactive motion sensor plush and a line of construction playsets, figures and traditional plush. Around the world, licensees supporting the Looney Tunes include apparel and accessory collections from high-end fashion designers such as Dolce & Gabbana, Braccialini, ICE Iceberg and Monnalisal and Lauren Moshi; Seiyu's exclusive kid apparel; and jewelry designer Worth & Douglas; toys and games licensees including PPW Toy's Looney Tunes collectible line of Mr. Potato Heads; Pressman Toy; Hasbro; Trefl; Lansay; Allegre HKM; Crunchies with freeze-dried fruit; French technology manufacturer EMTEC with a popular line of character-inspired USB flash drives; and global partners Hallmark and Rubie's Costume Co., among many other licensees.
The Looney Tunes also continue to wreak havoc off the screen and make a name for themselves in the food aisles as Looney Tunes Active! has become a dynamic licensing program for WBCP, with WBCP EMEA leading the charge. To date, EMEA has served as a key region for the Looney Tunes Active! initiative with more than 2 billion branded products sold at retail and with global partners including Nestlé Waters, Danone and Ferrero, as well as numerous local companies throughout the region complementing this line-up of support.
Scooby-Doo and the Gang continue to entertain and engage fans worldwide with a robust range of toys from global master toy licensee Character Group with their popular collectible figures, vehicles, playsets, and construction sets, available exclusively at Toys R Us in the US, and available throughout the EMEA region. Additional licensees supporting Scooby-Doo include the Mattel Hot Wheels® brand; Rubie's Costume Co. with fun, Scooby-Doo and the Gang costumes; along with Hallmark, Scholastic, Leap Frog, Pressman Toy, Trefl, NKOK, Lansay, General Mills, Kellogg, Campbell's, Hot Shots, Bioworld, Freeze, AME and many others all supporting the property and the international broadcast of Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated. As part of the Scooby-Doo fun, WBCP continues to extend the Zoinks Points to incorporate them into programs with new and refreshed opportunities to collect points.
WBCP is also excited to support the upcoming, new animated television series The Tom and Jerry Show, from WBA and coming soon to Cartoon Network, with Jazwares continuing as Hanna-Barbera master toy partner in North America, and including The Tom and Jerry Show in its future product roll-out. Giochi Preziosi will continue to represent the brand in Western Europe and Turkey as master toy partner for the Tom and Jerry property and the new television series with a toy range including figure assortments, play sets and action games. Tom and Jerry will also see support from such licensees as Hallmark, Ferrero, Trefl, Allegre HKM, Junkfood Clothing, Bioworld, and global partners such as Rubie's Costume Co., with an exciting costume collection for fans of all ages, General Mills, Egmont International, and more.
WBCP Sweeps Up TV Licensing Partners
Television licensing continues to be a dominant force in WBCP's diverse portfolio, with current and classic hits supported by licensing programs designed for fans and collectors. The ratings juggernaut and critically acclaimed series The Big Bang Theory continues to garner a wealth of licensing support, including trend-setting retailer Hot Topic with limited edition co-branded The Big Bang Theory/Star Trek™ merchandise and The Big Bang Theory/DC Comics exclusive 2013 Comic-Con edition t-shirt, supported by Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution with an on-air and online sweepstakes offering one lucky fan the chance to win special access at the Warner Bros. booth during this year's Comic-Con International San Diego. With more than 70 licensees supporting The Big Bang Theory multi-category licensing program, partners include fan-favorites Ripple Junction, with a multi-category merchandise line; apparel and accessories partners such as M.A.C. Group Pty. Ltd., Forbidden Planet, Aurimoda, S.A. de C.V and NTD Apparel; Funko, with stylized figures and bobbleheads; Cardinal Industries, Inc., with trivia and dice games and an UNO® co-brand; USAopoly, with a co-branded Clue game; Bif Bang Pow!, with a new line of character-inspired action figures and pop-culture toys and collectibles, as well as Cryptozoic Entertainment, Quantum Mechanix and global partner Hallmark, among many more expanding the program around the world.
Additional WBCP partnerships bring fans closer to their favorite WBTV hits with licensing programs and niche product lines at conventions throughout the U.S. for such series as Arrow (based on the DC Comics character Green Arrow and ranking as the #1 television series this past season on The CW among Total Viewers), Dallas (with the next generation of the Ewings), Fringe, Pretty Little Liars, Supernatural, The Voice and The Vampire Diaries. Classic television properties and perennial hits such as Seinfeld and Friends continue to be supported by ongoing merchandise programs and are among the league of globally recognized properties that WBCP offers in its television licensing entertainment portfolio.
The Magic of Global Themed Entertainment
From the most recognizable themed environments and attractions to thrilling rides and live stage shows, WBCP's global themed entertainment continues to expand, adding a new dimension to the Warner Bros. experience as WBCP properties enjoy a strong presence at theme parks, international cultural venues and live stages around the world.
Building on the global phenomenon of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Entertainment recently announced an expansion of historic proportion with the entirely new themed environment, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley. Scheduled to open in 2014, the world's first centrally themed, multi-park experience expands The Wizarding World of Harry Potter across both Universal Orlando theme parks and allows Universal's creative team to bring an unparalleled vision to this unique project. The new area will bring to life some of the experiences and places found in and around London in the Harry Potter books and films, offering brand-new adventures for fans and theme park guests from around the world. In addition, the recently announced plans to open another The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood, as well as the first one ever outside of the U.S. at Universal Studios Japan are exciting fans around the world.
Harry Potter: The Exhibition, currently headed to Tokyo and with more stops planned for 2013 and beyond, continues to bring the Harry Potter experience to fans globally with a state-of-the-art interactive, travelling exhibition highlighting artifacts from the Warner Bros. films based on J.K. Rowling's beloved book series.
WBCP also continues to thrill fans with world-class theme park operators and partners including Six Flags throughout the U.S. and Mexico, Hopi Hari in Brazil, Warner Bros. Movie World Australia and Parque Warner in Spain, among many others bringing the DC Comics Super Heroes and the Looney Tunes characters to attractions around the globe.
The Classics Live On!
WBCP is also the home of Warner Bros. Pictures' original classic film library, with such fan-favorites as Caddyshack, The Goonies, and Gremlins, and featuring timeless classics like Gone with the Wind, gearing up for the film's 75th Anniversary in 2014 with commemorative product for the film's landmark. Seasonal favorites like The Polar Express, A Christmas Story and Frosty the Snowman will also be presented at this year's show, among many others.
Toho Co., Ltd.'s Godzilla franchise contains one of the most widely recognized movie monsters worldwide, including more than 25 films, multiple television programs, video games and book series. Gareth Edwards is directing the film from a screenplay by Max Borenstein, Frank Darabont and Dave Callaham. Legendary's Thomas Tull and Jon Jashni are producing with Mary Parent and Brian Rogers. Alex Garcia and Patricia Whitcher are serving as executive producers alongside Yoshimitsu Banno and Kenji Okuhira. A presentation of Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures, "Godzilla" will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, except in Japan, where it will be distributed by Toho Co., Ltd. Legendary Pictures is a division of Legendary Entertainment. Slated to open beginning May 16, 2014, the film is expected to be presented in 3D.
About Man of Steel
From Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures comes Man of Steel, starring Henry Cavill in the role of Clark Kent/Superman, under the direction of Zack Snyder. The film also stars Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane, Laurence Fishburne, Antje Traue, Ayelet Zurer, Christopher Meloni and Russell Crowe. Man of Steel is produced by Charles Roven, Christopher Nolan, Emma Thomas and Deborah Snyder. The screenplay was written by David S. Goyer from a story by Goyer and Nolan, based upon Superman characters created by Jerry Siegel & Joe Shuster and published by DC Entertainment. Thomas Tull, Lloyd Phillips and Jon Peters are serving as executive producers. The film opened June 14, 2013 and is distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.
About The Hobbit Trilogy
Under the direction of Peter Jackson, the Academy Award-winning director of The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug and The Hobbit: There and Back Again feature screenplays by Fran Walsh & Philippa Boyens & Peter Jackson. Jackson is also producing the Trilogy, together with Carolynne Cunningham, Zane Weiner and Fran Walsh. The executive producers are Alan Horn, Toby Emmerich, Ken Kamins and Carolyn Blackwood, with Boyens and Eileen Moran serving as co-producers.
All three films in The Hobbit Trilogy are productions of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), with New Line managing production. Warner Bros. Pictures is handling worldwide theatrical distribution, with select international territories as well as all international television distribution being handled by MGM.
About 300: Rise of an Empire
Based on Frank Miller's latest graphic novel Xerxes, and told in the breathtaking visual style of the blockbuster 300, this new chapter of the epic saga, from Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures, takes the action to a fresh battlefield—on the sea. 300: Rise of an Empire will be released worldwide beginning March 7, 2014
About Licensing International Expo
Licensing International Expo is the most established licensing event in the world and has become a global marketplace for leveraging brand and property equity for new licensed consumer products. The show's appeal brings together top- level retail and manufacturing executives from more than 90 countries who look to Licensing International Expo to discover new brands and revenue generating opportunities within the $191 billion licensing industry.
Located at booth #N133, WBCP is one of the largest exhibitors at this year's show.
About Warner Bros. Consumer Products
Warner Bros. Consumer Products, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, is one of the leading licensing and retail merchandising organizations in the world.
Press materials are located at: wbcpmedia.warnerbros.com
DC SUPER HEROES and all related characters and elements are trademarks of and © DC Comics.
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