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January 2009 | Vol. VIII - No. 1


Harry Potter Movies Will Lead in Toys

Predictions Place Comic Book Heroes Close Behind

January 13, 2009 — Most of the very successful toys in 2008 were driven by movies — “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” “The Dark Knight,” Wall-E” and “Iron Man” – and it hence behooves us to look at what films are awaiting us this year and next.

I asked my buyer friends to rate the toy potential of the movies coming down the pike, on a scale from 1 to 10. This is what they came up with:

Title Toy Potential Release Date Developer Likely licensee(s):
1st in US; 2nd international
The Pink Panther 2 4 2/6/2009 MGM Sanrio
Jonas Brothers: The 3-D Concert Experience 4 2/27/2009 Disney Jakks Pacific
Watchmen 7 3/6/2009 Warner Bros. DC Direct
Monsters vs. Aliens 8 3/27/2009 DreamWorks Toy Quest
The Wolf Man 7 4/3/2009 Universal Pictures open
Race to Witch Mountain 2 4/9/2009 Disney Mattel
X-Men Origins: Wolverine 6 5/1/2009 Marvel Hasbro
The Chronicles of Narnia – The Voyage of the Dawn Treader 5 5/1/2009 Disney Jakks Pacific
Hannah Montana: The Movie 7 5/5/2009 Disney Jakks Pacific/Mattel
Star Trek 8 5/8/2009 Viacom Playmates/Corgi
Terminator: Salvation 8 5/22/2009 Warner Bros. Playmates
UP 5 6/12/2009 Disney Playmates
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen 9 6/26/2009 Hasbro Hasbro
Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs 8 7/1/2009 20th Century Fox Mattel
Astro Boy 3 7/1/2009 Imagi Animation WowWee
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince 10 7/7/2009 Warner Bros. NECA (int'l)/Corgi (Europe)
Land of the Lost 5 7/17/2009 Universal Pictures Jakks Pacific
G-Force 5 5 7/24/2009 Disney Jakks Pacific
He-Man: Masters of the Universe 8 8/1/2009 Warner Bros. Mattel
G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra 9 8/7/2009 Hasbro Hasbro
Where the Wild Things Are 2 7 9/9/2009 Warner Bros. McFarlane Toys
Avatar 8 8 12/17/2009 20th Century Fox Mattel
The Princess and the Frog 5 12/25/2009 Disney Mattel
Toy Story 3 9 1/8/2010 Disney Mattel
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 8 3/4/2010 Imagi Animation Playmates
Alice in Wonderland 3 3/19/2010 Disney Mattel
Alvin and the Chipmunks 2 5 3/19/2010 20th Century Fox Mattel
Iron Man 2 8 4/30/2010 Marvel Hasbro
Spider-Man 4 10 5/1/2010 Marvel Hasbro
Shrek Goes Fourth 7 5/21/2010 DreamWorks McFarlane Toys
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time 5 5/28/2010 Disney Jakks Pacific
Thor 6 6/4/2010 Marvel Hasbro
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 10 11/1/2010 Warner Bros. NECA (int'l)/Corgi (Europe)
Rapunzel 6 12/25/2010 Disney Mattel

For both 2009 and 2010, the buyers rated the Harry Potter entries as the top movies in terms of toy potential.

In order to validate their judgment, I looked at blog metrics denoting consumer interest, comparing the three top-rated movies for 2009. These metrics confirm the ratings:

I also consulted Times Online (the online version of the venerable “Times” of London) ] in regard to their projections for the 50 biggest blockbusters in 2009.

This is how they rated some of the movies given above:

Movie Buyer Weight**
1 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince 10
3 Star Trek 8
4 Watchmen 7
5 X-Men Origins: Wolverine 6
7 Avatar 8
8 Monsters vs. Aliens 8
9 Terminator: Salvation 8
13 Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen 9
22 Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs 8
25 Hannah Montana: The Movie 7
30 The Wolf Man 7
35 G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra 9

* 1 is best
** 10 is best

The buyers and the “Times” seem to agree in principle on which movies will be the most influential this year.

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Lutz MullerWriter's Bio: Lutz Muller is a Swiss who has lived on five continents. In  the United States, he was the CEO for four manufacturing companies, including two in the toy industry. Since 2002, he has provided competitive intelligence on the toy and video game market to manufacturers and financial institutions coast-to-coast. He gets his information from his retailer panel, from big-box buyers and his many friends in the industry. If anything happens, he is usually the first to know. Read more on his website at Read more articles by this author

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