TDmonthly Magazine!
October 2006 | Vol. V - No. 10


LeapFrog Leaps Into Cinema

iPod and Hollywood Had Better Look Out

“Are toy-driven Web shows the next must-have?”
The nice thing about being in Hollywood is that everyone — and I mean everyone — knows someone in the entertainment world, and the buzz never stops.

Recently, TDmonthly Magazine heard a hot rumor that LeapFrog LLC (lately in the news for CEO changes and stock stumbles), is frantically beefing up its popular Fly Pentop computer to compete with iPods and other MP3 players. Not only will the new Pentops be able to download songs and shows from the Internet, but LeapFrog also is developing original cartoon programming, some of which is headed for TV and some of which may be broken up into smaller snippets so they can run on the Web, or maybe even in the Pentop itself. Now that’s Edutainment with a big “E.”

LeapFrog has been mum on the subject, as has new CEO Jeffrey Katz, who was under 90-day strategic blackout when TDmonthly tried to contact him. Even his PR firm doesn't know what exactly the plans are for the Pentop and they hadn't heard a word about the cartoons, but our sources say it’s all coming soon.

Practically every toy out there now has its own Website. Are toy-driven Web shows the next must-have?

TDmonthly is keeping its ears open, and as soon as we know, you’ll know, too.

Below is the original Fly Pentop:

MSRP: $99.99
Age Range: 8 to 13
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Electronics

Who would have thought a computer could fit inside a pen? LeapFrog, clearly. The innovator of educational toys has come out with the Fly Pen, a computerized pen that speaks and translates words into foreign languages, such as Spanish and French. What’s more, by drawing on special Fly paper, users can interact with their creations. (Read Review)
— “It’s unique: a kid’s computer that isn’t a computer. Everyone wants one for the child in their lives,” reported Lisa Delaney, manager of Sweetwater Toys in Baltimore.
— “I was unsure of how well this would sell this Christmas. I knew it would do ‘okay,’ but … it’s been spectacular,” gushed Dawn Ramona, co-owner of Toy World in St. Louis.
— “This is the hot item,” stated Hector Alejandro of Bismarck, N.D.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 3078      (added 3/1/2005)

Alison MarekWriter's Bio: ALISON MAREK is an award-winning writer, director and cartoonist whose work has been published by Fairchild Publications and DC Comics (Piranha Press), broadcast on Showtime and other cable networks, and viewed worldwide in film festivals. See her short films and print work on Watch her nefarious villains in the web series Get inspired by her cartoons "Daily ARFFirmations to Unleash Your Inner Fido" at Phew! And then ...  Read more articles by this author


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