More questions! Will this week's Q&A address how Disney may affect the Tonnika Sisters? Sort of. What's the scoop with fan-sanctioned stuff going forward? And just for fun let's dump on street dates some more, because everyone hates them, a and if you don't, you should. Be sure to send in your questions for next time, too!
1. You *knew* this question was coming, but.....Tonnika Sisters?? Now that Papa George no longer has "final say", might this situation be re-evaluated?
Do we know for sure who's making the call? Hasbro seems to say it's Lucas, although we've heard the characters may be OK due to their animated appearance and how one of the actors apparently reached some sort of agreement.
I gotta say, I really doubt this particular topic is being discussed at the House of Mickey right now, and it'll probably be a couple of years before such a thing might happen. Or more.
2. Given George's vast acceptance of Fan-Parodies and homages, what might we see with the Mouse House's legendary history of not been as friendly towards fan-sanctioned stuff?
It's my understanding that they'll be treating fan costuming and fan films similarly to how they've been handled now, as there's no reason to poo-poo the 501st as they have a pretty good reputation. (I believe I saw a quote from Mary Franklin somewhere saying this is already basically going to continue as-is.) Fan movies that aren't making money on their IP generally only draw more love in for the genuine article, so I assume that those will largely be treated as they have been. Still, it's early and things can change, particularly if a fan film is too good or too popular.
As long as people keep their noses clean, I'm sure we'll all be fine. Don't go manufacturing your own Tonnika figures or an unlicensed TIE Fighter and everything should be just fine.
3. With this year quickly winding down and very little new product to be found out there, I am wondering does the upcoming Droid Factory line have one of those infamous street dates? Or is it just early 2013 and that's when the new products will hit?
Hasbro gets their jollies from street dates. Most new Hasbro products have street dates, although the reasons for these are increasingly murky. "Because we want to" seems to be the case, as we're seeing these set dates for things like Furby or Transformers or even the first wave of Marvel Universe a few years ago. Expect next year's line to have a date. Also expect Toys R Us to break it.
4. Starwars and Disney has already had a long relationship. How do you think the acquisition will effect collectors and the Hasbro action figure line? What about relationships with other companies? (For example, I assume Disney will sooner or later want Marvel to make the Star Wars comics rather than Dark Horse.)
I think everybody is predicting (unless it was confirmed when I sneezed/blinked) Marvel will retake comics, but how that'll take form remains to be seen. (CLEAN SLATE PLZ. And a new series starting with #108. That's what I want, it worked for Transformers: Regeneration One. Look it up, it's happy stuff.)
Disney owns a lot of companies, and their absorbing the book license when that comes up wouldn't be too stunning.
Disney does not have a toy company with the infrastructure to distribute to thousands of big box retail locations under various owners yet. There's no reason they couldn't do it, but that's not what they're doing today. I figure they'll stick with Hasbro and you'll start to see obnoxious, expensive, just-different-enough-to-make-you-mad merchandise exclusively for the increasingly hard-to-find Disney stores. (That's what's happening with Marvel, sort of.)
Video games won't change much, I'm guessing, not that this has been an even category. What was the last major non-MMO non-LEGO game anyway? I can't even remember. Force Unleashed II? (Kinect Star Wars? Ugh.)
I don't have a rolodex of when all the licensees are set to renew, but I'd keep an eye on that. LEGO just reupped for another decade recently, so there's that. Disney will probably stay the course and you won't see too many shake-ups for a while.
5. The New Toys R Us Speeder Bike that just come out, does that count as the Vintage Collection Bike or will it still be coming out in Vintage Collection Packaging (Return of the Jedi)?
Sure, do you want it to count? That's up to you, really. It wouldn't stun me to see it repackaged later, where and when (and if) remain up in the air. Hasbro's been very, very quiet as to anything specific for 2013 since Celebration so I'm not counting on anything right now, particularly variations of things which were technically never officially announced. Heck, I'm wondering where the Endor AT-AT's at.
I really don't have a heck of a lot to say, other than Happy Thanksgiving and good hunting!
Got questions? Email me with Q&A in the subject line now! I'll answer your questions as soon as time (or facts) permit.