The USA and China are currently engaged in a trade war, it’s not the taxation of trade routes to outlying star systems that is in question, the US administration is of the opinion that China is taking unfair advantage of free trade, so more and more imported goods from China are subject to trade tariffs. What would happen should the US administration impose a 25% tariff on virtually anything produced in China? Including toys? How would and could Hasbro react? What effects would consumers feel and what scenarios are there? Click through for details!
Whenever you want to make a Star Wars toy, you need to have a license. This should be pretty common knowledge. Lucasfilm and Disney protect their intellectual property and whoever wants to make anything based on Star Wars needs a licensing agreement. Now, these agreements are usually secret, other than some very basic facts, no specific details are released, so it’s usually very difficult to know how much money is involved.
While digging through the internet I was able to find a (somewhat redacted) licensing agreement between Hasbro and Lucasfilm from October 1997, an agreement that was extended several times in the meantime until 2020. And while redacted, it is still very informative, so informative that I think anyone should click through now to read all the details and to finally find out how much Hasbro is paying for that Star Wars license! You may be very surprised. Also, a very interesting question will be answered: who actually owns anything Hasbro makes? So, click through for everything you need to know about Hasbro’s Star Wars license!
The Last Jedi is currently the top selling Blu-Ray in the USA. Perfect time to take a closer look at Star Wars home video sales. And a closer examination shows some puzzling numbers that may warrant further discussion. Click through for more!
Ever since Billy Dee Williams was announced as a cast member for Episode IX fans were concerned in what shape Williams would be for the movie, considering his health and age. Well, it seems Billy Dee is in great shape, he has a personal trainer who works with him and Billy Dee Williams posted a short video on his Twitter feed earlier today where you can see him working out and boxing. So whatever Lando will do in Episode IX, he won’t just have to sit or lean against a wall. Maybe he can punch some sense into Kylo Ren? Go to Twitter to see the short clip!
Funko Pop, while not something that is much discussed here on JTA, is a juggernaut on the collectibles market, that is, figures or figurines that are aimed at adults, think TVC and Black Series. And now some interesting data has been released that sheds some light on how Star Wars and other popular licenses perform in the Funko line-up of both POP! vinyl figures and 3.75 inch action figures. Click through for all the details!
Mark Hamill received a question by a concerned Star Wars fan on Twitter who wanted to learn more about Luke’s motivations in The Last Jedi. And Mark Hamill, the kind man that he is, replied to the fan and gave him an answer. Click through for all the details!
The Samurai themed Movie Realization action figue line by Tamashii Nations will get an interpretation of C-3PO. The figure will be released in January 2019, price is 9.504 Yen (about 85 USD). The figure does have articulated eyes and jaw. Check out some photos on the official Tamashii Nations website, the info is in Japanese, but Google Translate is your tool of choice here. You can also check out some more photos of the figure! Pre-orders will most certainly open soon. What do you think? Do you like Samurai C-3PO and is he something you will add to your collection?
The official Star Wars YouTube channel released a behind the scenes look for Star Wars Resistance earlier today. In this 3-minute clip you get to meet some of the voice actors, a little is told about each character and you learn more about the general setting. For example, “Team Fireball”, as it is called, has to earn money by racing swoop/speeder bikes. The female character Tam is “tough, no nonsense and kind of has an attitude” according to her voice actress (which sounds like any other female character in movies and shows these days) and main character Kaz is actually bad at spying but has heart (the Star Wars version of Johnny English?). Check it out, the video is full of tiny tidbits and short clips from the upcoming show that will give you a better impression than the short trailer from a while ago. The clip also confirms that the show is made for kids, as one producer says that the show is intended for younger audiences, not for us grown-ups.
Former Doctor Who star Matt Smith has joined the cast of Episode IX. Nothing is known about his role yet, but Matt Smith is joining an ever expanding cast list. Dominic Monaghan (Lost, Lord of the Rings) was also announced as yet another cast member. It seems Episode IX might have a quite expansive cast list, of course both Smith and Monaghan could only be seen in smaller roles. We’ll learn more about that eventually.
What are your thoughts? Are you excited for Matt Smith and Dominic Monbaghan to join the Star Wars franchise? Smith, after his time with Doctor Who, also starred in the ill fated Terminator Genisys with Emilia Clarke, so he’s not new to Hollywood SciFi blockbusters.
Dear Hasbro, a simple question for you: when will you see to it that the myriad of exclusives released for the Black Series or TVC will see proper distribution at regular MSRP in Europe and other territories, so that etailers don’t resort to importing from Asia themselves?
Why must international collectors pay a dummy tax for these exclusives again and again? Do you think a Black Series figure is worth $47? The sad thing is, this figure will most likely still sell out. General Veers who was $59 also sold out.
Dear readers, is the figure up for pre-order in your country too? What do you have to pay for Bespin Leia? Let us know in the comments!
While the retail apocalypse is a much discussed topic, with the disappearance of TRU in the USA and UK the most memorable blow to brick and mortar toy retailers in the past few months, the toy market still saw very strong growth in the first half of 2018 in most markets, including the USA which posted really strong numbers. And one of the leading trends of the global toy market? It’s collectables and youth electronics! How did action figures fare? And where exactly is Star Wars? It used to be the number 1 toy property worldwide not so long ago. But not anymore. Click through for more details!
Some photos from the filming of Episode IX have appeared on the web. You can get a good look at Poe Dameron, Finn and Chewbacca as well as some extras (?). Get a first glimpse of what we might be getting as action figures in late 2019, early 2020 for Poe and Finn. Only click through if you want to see some of photos from the Episode IX set! Don’t click through and ignore this article if photos of Oscar Isaac and John Boyega in their Episode IX outfits will spoil things too much for you! You are warned!
Please take this with several grains of salt, but a rumor is circulating that Rian Johnson’s Star Wars trilogy may no longer be. Click through for the info that is available!
Availability of action figures at brick and mortar retail stores has been a topic of debate lately. But what is the state of the US toy industry and US toy retailers in 2018, after the demise of Toys R Us? Click through for more details!
Digital photo site Shutterfly asked more than 1,000 people for a representative survey what defining movie of the 2010s they would put in a time capsule to conserve for posterity. And the winner with the most votes: The Force Awakens. But when you look at the details of the results an interesting trend can be seen that should be cause for alarm for Disney. Click through for details.
It was reported by Bloomberg that Disney’s grand plans for its streaming service may not work as smoothly as intended. Disney sold the broadcast rights for the Original Trilogy and Prequel Trilogy movies to Turner Broadcasting back in 2016. And this deal also included streaming rights. It wasn’t cheap either. Turner paid 275 million for the movies in 2016, a hefty sum. Disney would like nothing better than to get the rights back from Turner, but Turner Broadcasting so far refuses to sell the rights back to Disney or is asking for too much money. The rights expire only in 2024. That could mean that for five long years the all new Disney streaming channel, which is all about Star Wars and Marvel, can’t show the first six Star Wars movies, only the Disney era movies and some fans of the George Lucas era may think twice about paying for a service that won’t be able to stream the movies they love the most. However, Disney still has some time to convince Turner to sell back the rights. Would it matter to you if the first six movies were missing from the Disney streaming service?
I’ve come across some very random Star Wars merchandise ever since Disney revitalized the franchise. Kylo Ren kid’s punch or Star Wars crackers, for example. And earlier tonight I saw this at my local supermarket, a Rey alarm clock. They also had a Kylo Ren alarm clock from The Last Jedi. It’s for kids and is 5.99 euros or about $7. And I wonder… who makes these things? And most importantly… why? Does anyone buy this merchandise? What odd Star Wars merchandise have you seen at retail? Post pictures, if you have some. I wonder what else is out there.
Do you have some spare cash? A movie prop auction will be held in London on September 20th. It’s your once in a lifetime chance at acquiring some unique and iconic movie/tv props! Click through for more details!
Director J.J. Abrams posted a very first photo from the set of Episode IX earlier today on Twitter. It doesn’t reveal or show much really, but still, it’s evidence that filming has begun. Now J.J. has the momumental task ahead of him to deliver the grand finale to the Skywalker saga. What you see in the photo is the camera rig and if you squint very hard it may very well be that John Boyega and some other person (Daisy Ridley?) are in the cockpit of what could be the Millennium Falcon. It also seems Finn finally got rid rid of his leather jacket, I wonder what Poe thinks about that!
The lightsaber, the most favorite weapon in Star Wars. And who doesn’t love the lightsaber duels in Star Wars? We have the measured, careful testing out of skills and then we also have the 15 minute acrobatic lightsaber dances of the prequel trilogy. But as it turns out Jedi use the lightsaber all wrong. How so? Click through to find out!
I received my Enfys Nest with Swoop Bike set a short while ago (in Germany) and wanted to give you a very brief look at the set. Nothing fancy. I’m not the resident figure reviewer on JTA. Paul’s review will follow shortly, most certainly, but before he will tell you all the details you’ll ever want to know let me show two or three photos! Click through for more!
A magazine scan soliciting the SH Figuarts A New Hope Leia has appeared in the wild. The figure is coming in December! Pre-orders will certainly open soon. So anyone who wants her should keep their eyes open and wait for the pre-order! Leia is the last member of the classic A New Hope hero line-up still missing. Leia will come with an extra hood up optional piece and at least one alternate head sculpt. Click the image below for the full version of the magazine scan!
Yodasnews had the opportunity to talk to Steve Evans and Joe Ninivaggi at SDCC and asked them several questions. Definitely check out the interview and click through for a few key details from the Q&A!
There seems to be some confusion about the performance of Star Wars toys in the 2nd quarter of 2018. In Hasbro’s very own earnings presentation for the 2nd quarter of 2018 only Beyblade and Marvel were mentioned as showing growth for Hasbro’s Partner Brands, which was more than offset by the other Partner Brands. But a transcript of the earnings call following the presentation reveals that things are not as bleak and actually quite positive when it comes to Star Wars. Click through for more details about Star Wars retail performance!
Star Wars News Net posted a transcription of their SDCC interview with Steve Evans and Joe Ninivaggi on their homepage. It is a very interesting read with some very revealing and perplexing answers to straight forward questions, you have to read it to believe it. Click through for some more details!
Earlier today Hasbro released its its numbers for the 2nd quarter of 2018. It is not really pretty. And Star Wars toys revenue is down again. Click through for some details!
Update: there is a new article on the front page. Apparently, Star Wars toys revenue did not decline after all and actually things are better than the presentation let on. Things were clarified in the earnings call following the presentation by Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner. Please read the new article which goes into all the details!
Hasbro revealed at their SDCC panel that they will introduce a new 6 inch figure line. A greatest hits line called “The Black Series Archive”. Hasbro will release 4-8 figures each year, they will select highly sought after figures for this line. All figures will come on blister cards and all human figures will be updated with the photo real technology. The first four figures, coming later in 2018, are Boba Fett, Bossk, IG-88 and X-Wing Luke with photo real paint apps!
Greg Grunberg more or less confirmed in an interview with Yahoo that he’s back for Episode IX. His character Snap Wexley was absent in The Last Jedi, but as it seems there can’t be a JJ Abrams movie without his buddy Greg. Also: after The Last Jedi the Resistance can use any help it can get. You can watch the very short (less than 30 seconds) interview snippet with Greg on Yahoo.
Bloomberg reports that Comcast has dropped out of the bidding war for 21st Century Fox to focus on the acquisition of European pay tv channel Sky instead. This means that Disney can go ahead and the acquisition of 21st Century Fox has no real hurdles to overcome anymore. The deal already has US antitrust approval, Disney merely needs to sell off some of the local Fox sports networks, which Disney has already agreed to do. It’s most likely only a matter of time now until most of the Marvel characters and all the distribution rights for Star Wars are under one roof, pending shareholder approval. The separate Disney and Fox shareholder meetings are supposed to be held on July 27th.
After taking a look at both the Sequel and the Original Trilogy, today is the time to take a look at the Prequel Trilogy and what 10(ish) figures are most needed for the 6 inch Black Series! Click through for my top 10 picks!
Dee Bradley Baker, who voiced the all of the clones on The Clone Wars, has posted something on his Twitter feed about the upcoming SDCC TCW panel:
#StarWars :the Clone Wars fans: I’m just gonna say, you don’t want to miss this. #Comicon2018
Now, why would he say that? Is it possible, against all odds, that we might get more animated The Clone Wars? Dialogue was recorded for several more seasons, just saying… What do you think? I believe fans would be over the moon if the unfinished episodes see the light of day, maybe on the streaming service… Is it too much to hope for?
Recently I looked at some of the Disney era characters that need a Black Series figure. Today I want to do the same for the Original Trilogy. It’s not easy making a list of just ten characters, so I cheated a bit here and there. Anyway, click through for my top 10 picks of Original Trilogy characters that need a Black Series figure!
Yes, it’s true. The beard is no more. Mark Hamill posted a photo of a new gift he received from Sideshow Collectibles (a Joker cane) on Twitter and in the photo you can see a clean shaven Mark (makes him look 20 years younger). Now, what could that mean? Flashback scene in IX with a digitally de-aged Mark Hamill (think Michael Douglas in Ant-Man)? Maybe all of IX will be a flashback? Maybe Force ghosts have no beards (shut up, Obi-Wan!) or maybe Mark just learned his services are no longer needed, now that Lando will steal the show? Let the speculations begin! 😉
I received my SH Figuarts Ben Kenobi figure today. With him only Leia is missing from the SHF hero line-up of A New Hope. So how does the figure compare to the Black Series version? Click through for a handful of photos and a quick overview!
Now that is interesting, JTA regular Matthew Cohen sent us two photos he found in a Black Series Facebook group which show a brand new feature of a Black Series figure. The Rebel Fleet Trooper actually has SHF style butterfly joints under his vest! Click through for the other photo!
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