UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. and BENTONVILLE, Ark., March 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Universal Pictures and Walmart today announced a retail program tied to the upcoming live action/CG-animated comedy Hop, the second film from Illumination Entertainment (Despicable Me) that hits movie theaters across the country on April 1. Walmart customers can build their Hop-themed Easter baskets, and visit the movie-inspired "Candy Factory," with great values on 100 exclusive licensed products, including candy, toys, activities and apparel.
"We're excited to offer our customers new ways to shop the Easter holiday this year with our Hop products available at incredible prices. From the toy aisles to the baking center, families can enjoy the magic of Hop and its characters throughout our stores," said Gary Severson, senior vice president, Home Entertainment, Walmart U.S. "This is the first time we've worked with a licensed property to brand an important seasonal event in Walmart stores."
"Hop is the next great film from Chris Meledandri and Illumination Entertainment that will delight families all over the world this Easter season," said Stephanie Sperber, president, Universal Partnerships and Licensing. "Walmart's unprecedented level of co-branded promotional support is an incredible opportunity to raise awareness for our film and allow shoppers to bring the adorable characters and Hop-themed products into their homes."
Beginning tomorrow, more than 3,000 Walmart stores will provide a destination for all things Easter including a dedicated aisle rolling out sweet Easter treats in every color of the rainbow, and a Build-a-Basket Factory. Specific Hop licensed products will range from $1 - $10 and include:
- Building the Easter Basket
- Frankford Easter baskets
- Hershey's candy and Frankford chocolates and candy
- Getting Dressed for the Occasion
- Boys' T-shirts from Garan; Girls' T-shirts from Topsville
- Easter Treats Families Can Bake and Enjoy Together
- Cookies and craft items from Bakery Craft
- Cookie decorating kits from Create a Treat
- Assorted baked goods from Keystone Bakeries
- Bunny-full Snacks and Drinks
- Kool-Aid and Country Time Lemonade
- Kraft Mac & Cheese and Velveeta Shells & Cheese
- Toys and More
- Character plush toys from Funrise
- Coloring and activity books from Dalmation Press
- Bubbles, pinwheels, paddle board, memory card games, etc. from Funrise
- Bath and body products from Townley
Walmart will also offer Hop-themed video games for the Nintendo DS, DSi and 3DS, greeting cards and children's books.
Blending state of the art animation with live action, Hop is a comedy about E.B. (voiced by Russell Brand), the teenage son of the Easter Bunny. On the eve of taking over the family business, E.B. leaves for Hollywood in pursuit of his dream of becoming a drummer. He encounters Fred (James Marsden), an out-of-work slacker with his own lofty goals, who accidentally hits E.B. with his car. Feigning injury, E.B. manipulates Fred into providing him shelter, and Fred finds himself with the world's worst houseguest.
The film is helmed by Tim Hill, director of the blockbuster Alvin and the Chipmunks and produced by Chris Meledandri's Illumination Entertainment (Despicable Me). www.iwantcandy.com
About Universal Partnerships & Licensing
UP&L oversees Universal's consumer product licensing, film and home entertainment promotions, and all corporate alliances for Universal's theatrical, home entertainment, theme parks and stage productions. This dedicated division is also responsible for monetizing the Studio's vast library of films and characters through licensing, branding and marketing opportunities. UP&L is part of NBCUniversal. NBCUniversal is one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production and marketing of entertainment, news and information to a global audience. NBCUniversal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group and world-renowned theme parks. Comcast Corporation owns a controlling 51% interest in NBCUniversal, with GE holding a 49% stake.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) serves customers and members more than 200 million times per week at 8,970 retail units under 60 different banners in 15 countries. With fiscal year 2011 sales of $419 billion, Walmart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. A leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity, Walmart ranked first among retailers in Fortune Magazine's 2010 Most Admired Companies survey. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting www.walmartstores.com and on Twitter at http://Twitter.com/Walmart. Online merchandise sales are available at www.walmart.com and www.samsclub.com.
SOURCE Walmart; Universal Pictures