GLENDALE, Calif., April 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. (Nasdaq: DWA) has acquired the IP for the iconic Troll franchise from the Dam Family and Dam Things of Denmark with plans to introduce the beloved brand to a new generation of fans around the world. In support of the brand's enormous global potential, DreamWorks Animation has named American Girl veteran Shawn Dennis as head of brand development to cultivate this classic franchise.
"Trolls is a brand with over fifty years of deep heritage and we are thrilled to bring this iconic, multi-generational property to DreamWorks Animation," said Chief Operating Officer Ann Daly. "We have big plans for this franchise and Shawn Dennis is uniquely suited to lead this charge. She helped grow the American Girl brand into a household name and by bringing this expertise to Trolls she will introduce these characters to legions of new fans around the world."
"Trolls is one of those rare, proven and universally adored brands," added Dennis. "There is incredible potential here to engage kids across multiple platforms in a way that is fun, enduring and meaningful. It is truly an amazing opportunity to be able to re-launch a brand like this one."
Dennis joined DreamWorks Animation to oversee its Trolls franchise in addition to other businesses within the company's vast portfolio of branded intellectual property. Dennis' extensive background in franchise management most recently saw her serve as Senior Vice President, Marketing, Product Development and Publishing at American Girl. Previously, Dennis served as group head and Vice President, Global Branding at Dell, Inc. and Chief Marketing Officer and Vice President for the National Football League, which followed eight years with MasterCard International and seven years at Universal Studios in a variety of roles.
"DreamWorks Animation is renowned for telling wonderful stories about imaginative worlds while bringing characters with universal appeal into the hearts and homes of families everywhere – I can think of no better future for Trolls," said Calle Ostergaard, Chief Executive Officer of Dam Things. "We are confident that the time-honored legend of the Trolls, which holds such special significance to the Dam family and the people of Scandanavia, will now live on in new and exciting ways with DreamWorks Animation."
The Troll doll phenomenon was born in 1959 when Danish fisherman and woodcutter Thomas Dam, too poor to afford a Christmas present for his young daughter Lajla, carved a doll for her based on the legendary Scandinavian troll. This modern-day Geppetto couldn't have imagined that the Troll dolls would soon become one of the biggest toy crazes of the 1960s. The Trolls experienced a resurgence in the 1990s, and in 2003, the Toy Industry of America named Trolls on its list of One Hundred of the Century's Most Treasured Toys. Their uniquely endearing faces and shocks of colorful hair continue to capture the hearts and imaginations of fans with rare Troll dolls still being coveted by collectors around the globe.
DreamWorks Animation is now the exclusive worldwide licensor of the merchandise rights for the classic Troll Dolls with the sole exception of Scandanavia, the birthplace of the Trolls, where Dam Things will remain the licensor.
About DreamWorks Animation DreamWorks Animation creates high-quality entertainment, including CG animated feature films, television specials and series and live entertainment properties, meant for audiences around the world. The Company has world-class creative talent, a strong and experienced management team and advanced filmmaking technology and techniques. DreamWorks Animation has been named one of the "100 Best Companies to Work For" by FORTUNE® Magazine for five consecutive years. In 2013, DreamWorks Animation ranks #12 on the list. All of DreamWorks Animation's feature films are produced in 3D. The Company has theatrically released a total of 26 animated feature films, including the franchise properties of Shrek, Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda, How to Train Your Dragon and Puss In Boots.
Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements This document includes certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company's expectations regarding the timing and impact of the acquisition on the Company's business and revenues, and the Company's plans, prospects, strategies, proposals and our beliefs and expectations concerning performance of our current and future releases and anticipated talent, directors and storyline for our upcoming films and other projects, constitute forward-looking statements. These statements are based on current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections about the industry in which we operate and management's beliefs and assumptions. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions which are difficult to predict. Actual results may vary materially from those expressed or implied by the statements herein due to changes in economic, business, competitive, technological and/or regulatory factors, and other risks and uncertainties affecting the operation of the business of DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. These risks and uncertainties include: satisfaction of closing conditions in the acquisition agreement, our ability to integrate the operations of Classic Media and exploit its portfolio of properties, audience acceptance of our films, our dependence on the success of a limited number of releases each year, the increasing cost of producing and marketing feature films, piracy of motion pictures, the effect of rapid technological change or alternative forms of entertainment and our need to protect our proprietary technology and enhance or develop new technology. In addition, due to the uncertainties and risks involved in the development and production of animated feature projects, the release dates for the projects described in this document may be delayed. For a further list and description of such risks and uncertainties, see the reports filed by us with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our most recent annual report on Form 10-K and our most recent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. DreamWorks Animation is under no obligation to, and expressly disclaims any obligation to, update or alter its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in assumptions or otherwise.
SOURCE DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc.