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Netflix Snags Landmark Film Deal With Sony Pictures

Agreement Includes A First-Look At Films Sony Pictures Intends For Direct-To-Streaming Netflix and Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) have announced a multiyear, exclusive first pay window licensing deal in the U.S. for theatrically released SPE feature films, beginning with their 2022 film slate. This new agreement builds upon Netflix’s pre-existing output deal with Sony Pictures Animation films to now include all SPE film labels and genres. The agreement is particularly notable as many studios, like Warner Bros. and Disney, are focusing on creating their own successful streaming platforms. Sony appears to be traveling in the opposite direction, choosing to work instead with the already well established Netflix service, which currently has 204 million paid members. “Netflix has been a terrific partner as we continue to expand our relationship,” said Keith Le Goy,… . . . read more

Topps Releases the Monster of All NFTs

Collectibles Leader Topps Digital Issuing Godzilla NFT Collectibles on March 31 If you’ve been reading a lot about NFTs and were wondering when it would hit the world of licensing … it already has, as collectibles firm Topps Digital continues to introduce exciting new products on the WAX Blockchain. Tomorrow, on March 31, Topps will conintue to build on its reputation as one of the first innovators in digital collectibles, celebrating Toho’s iconic franchise by bringing the studio’s classic monsters, including the King of the Monsters, Godzilla, to the modern platform of NFTs via the WAX blockchain. Topps has been the preeminent creator and innovator of physical cards and digital collectibles for more than 70 years,. Generations of fans have enjoyed the pleasure of collecting, trading and showing off their card collections,… . . . read more

ZAG’s Miraculous Signs With Disney and New Product Partners

The hit series Miraculous – Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir has been signed on for seasons four and five, and high ratings are now driving several new licensing deals. Julian Zag, Executive Vice President, Global Operations, says the company has signed several “top tier” partners over the past month for a wide range of consumer products and services. Newly signed consumer products partners include Crayola for branded color/activity books; Fast Forward for kids backpacks and lunch totes; Kid Designs for youth electronics including headphones and microphones; Komar Kids for sleepwear; Peachtree Playthings for crafts and activities; Galerie for seasonal and everyday chocolate and candy; Inkology for innovative stationary and activity products; Trends International for posters and stickers; and for branded debit and credit cards.  Additional partners for online retail… . . . read more

Forbidden Planet Releasing New Merch Based on Classic Paramount Films

Forbidden Planet, a pop culture product developer, has partnered with ViacomCBS to release new merchandise featuring several of Paramount Pictures classic films, including Forrest Gump, Top Gun, and the hilarious cult classic Galaxy Quest. In total seven Paramount films are included in the new range of apparel and giftware that will be released through Forbidden Planet’s online retail portal. Those include: The Godfather, Top Gun, Top Gun: Maverick, Forrest Gump, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Anchorman, Sleepy Hollow, and Galaxy Quest. “I’m genuinely thrilled to be working on the Paramount Films library,” said Anthony Garnon, licensing and special projects manager at Forbidden Planet, “These are some of the most well known and beloved films of all time. Because of its ties to the world of Sci Fi and science fiction fan culture,… . . . read more

Nic Cage Film Willy’s Wonderland Appoints Radar Licensing

The film Willy’s Wonderland has appointed Radar Licensing of Brooklyn as its global licensing agent as Landmark Studio Group develops a worldwide consumer products retail program for the horror thriller, starring Nicolas Cage with Emily Tosta, Ric Reitz, Chris Warner, and Beth Grant. Landmark says Radar Licensing will create a comprehensive licensing and merchandising program for mass, specialty, and online retailers across a multitude of categories, including apparel, accessories, publishing, electronics, toys, and costumes. The t-shirt worn in Willy’s Wonderland by Cage has been consistently selling out of stock, and Radar Licensing has appointed its first licensee, Changes, as apparel partner to replicate the t-shirt for availability this spring. Landmark and Radar Licensing anticipate additional products for Willy’s Wonderland to begin hitting retail in Q3 2021. “We are thrilled with the fan and… . . . read more

Disney Confirms ‘Flexible’ Summer Film Release Schedule

The world’s dominant entertainment company confirmed on March 24 its summer film release schedule, committing to a “flexible distribution strategy” similar to what Warner Bros did earlier this year with HBO Max. Disney says it will use both theaters and its Disney+ streaming service to release its major films this year, in a strategy calculated to maximize returns and viewership as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact box office revenues. The Disney release schedule is also critical for the company’s various licensing partners, as those releases are the primary driver of sales for new Disney-related products. The studio says it considers the combined streaming/theater release of Raya and the Last Dragon to be a success, and will follow the same model as it releases the live action version of Cruella… . . . read more

Mattel to Air Barbie Fashion Battle Reality Show

If you’ve got an eye for fashion and a talent for really, really tiny stitching, you too could be a star on Mattel’s new reality TV offering, Barbie Fashion Battle. Mattel has announced it is partnering with Mission Control Media to develop Barbie Fashion Battle, a design-focused reality competition series that tasks aspiring designers with creating miniature high-fashion collections for Barbie. The project is part of a much wider initiative by Mattel, which has focused heavily over the past two years on developing TV series and films that depict Barbie and other traditional toy and game brands. There are currently more than two dozen projects in development Mattel Television, including three that involve the Barbie brand. In the show, Barbie Fashion Battle‘s 12 adult contestants will be divided into two teams, each… . . . read more

Aardman Secures Two Licensing Deals for Robin Robin

The animation studio Aardman, which got its start with the celebrated Wallace and Gromit series, has secured two new licensing deals for its new animated musical special Robin Robin. Aardman this week announced it has reached an agreement with Macmillan Children’s Books for publishing and Aurora World for plush. Robin Robin is a 30-minute festive holiday special, created by directors Dan Ojari and Mikey Please. Robin Robin is the endearing story of a robin who is adopted by a family of burglar mice when her egg fortuitously rolls into a rubbish dump. As she grows up her differences become more apparent. She sets off on the heist to end all heists to prove to her family that she can be a really good mouse, but ends up discovering who she really is…. . . . read more

Hasbro’s Finn Arnesen Joins Games Workshop

The Games Workshop Group is diving even deeper into the entertainment business, announcing the appointment of former Hasbro Studios SVP Finn Arnesen as the company’s first Head of Entertainment Development. Games Workshop is best known for its Warhammer gaming franchise, and the company also has its own library of novels and short stories based on the game. Arnesen’s first task in his new role will be to mine that content to develop both animated and live action talent for film and TV series. Arnesen will report to Game Workshop’s Executive Vice President of Global Licensing, Jon Gillard. Arnesen is a respected veteran of the content world, having worked with Turner Broadcasting and Hasbro Studios. “In its almost 40-year history, Warhammer has been a leader in the field of tabletop and video… . . . read more

Massive Campaign Marks Wonder Woman 80th Anniversary

Following hard on the release of Wonder Woman 1984, DC and Warner Bros. are launching a sprawling, global campaign to celebrate 80 years of the Wonder Woman character, which is arguably more popular today than ever. The global anniversary party will launch under the ‘Believe In Wonder’ slogan, and will include worldwide events such as fan favorite digital content, new publishing releases over a variety of genres and platforms, new fashion collaborations with award winning designers, live physical exhibits, and online or in-person experiences inspired by the iconic super hero. It all started on International Women’s Day (March 8) as DC UNIVERSE INFINITE unlocked exclusive and free access to the first ever comic book headlined by the Amazonian warrior princess, and launched a Twitter campaign under the hashtags #BelieveinWonder and #WonderWoman80…. . . . read more