New American Idol Tour Extends Audition Process
FremantleMedia Licensing Worldwide, Americas teamed up with Glowcast Venturesto extend the audition process to 50 cities across the nation with The IdolAuditions Tour. The tour launches at local malls and other locations in Augustand will allow nearly 20,000 more people to try out for the show's sixthseason. The first 500 people to arrive at the audition site and meet all therequirements of an American Idol contestant then earn the right to perform infront of a live audience for the chance to gain access to one of the primaryaudition sites for the show. After performing, winners from each of the 50local auditions will be fast-tracked through the stadium audition process intheir region, having pre-cleared the early round of auditions. Each of thelocal events also will include a variety of fan-friendly experiences andinteractive exhibits presented by the Tour sponsors.
Bratz to Have a Passion for TV
The Bratz will make their TV debut this fall as part of a deal between 4KidsEntertainment, Inc., and MGA Entertainment. The CGI-animated television serieswill air Saturday mornings on 4Kids TV on Fox. The 4Kids TV girls' blockcurrently includes Winx Club and Mew Mew Power. Japanese-animated MagicalDoremi also will join the block when the fourth season of 4Kids TV launchesSaturday, September 10.In other news, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are expected tocome to the silver screen in early 2007 supported by 4Kids Entertainmenthandling exclusive worldwide merchandising and Playmates Toys with a new toyline. The Mirage Group, the group of companies that owns the property, hadlicensed the film animation rights to Imagi Animation Studios. Imagi hasreached an agreement with The Weinstein Co. and Warner Bros. Pictures for thosecompanies to distribute the CGI-animated feature film.
Partnership Supports Kid Inventors
By Kids For Kids Company and Mattel signed a global marketing partnershipagreement giving Mattel the right of first refusal for toy and game conceptsinvented by kid inventors represented by BKFK. Mattel also will be theexclusive presenting toy sponsor of the By Kids For Kids-Xerox 2005 NationalInvention Competition and will sponsor the BKFK Brainstorm Challenge summermuseum program. The competition will begin inviting submissions for toys,games, and sporting goods ideas in fall 2005. The Brainstorm Challenge is aBKFK-created innovative thinking camp program running in more than 50children's and science museums across the country this summer. Thisexperiential, hands-on program invites kids to explore their creativity byconstructing toys and games with a BKFK-provided curriculum.
Chorion Acquires Silver Lining Productions
Chorion PLC acquired Silver Lining Productions Ltd. for an undisclosed amount.Through the acquisition, Chorion adds a portfolio of film, TV, andmerchandising rights from children's authors such as Ian Falconer (Olivia),Eric Carle (The Very Hungry Caterpillar), Rosemary Wells (Max & Ruby), andBabette Cole (Princess Smartypants). The acquisition also will strengthenChorion's position in the U.S., following the recent launch of Make Way forNoddy on PBS. Equally, Chorion's experience and presence in Europe and Asiawill assist the growth of Silver Lining's brands around the world. SilverLining co-founders Amory Millard and Diana Manson join the Chorion senior managementteam.
RJM Licensing to Rep Seasonal Titles
RJM Licensing Inc. partnered with The Copyrights Group to represent and furtherexpand the North American merchandise programs for "The Snowman" and "FatherChristmas." Initial categories under consideration for the seasonal booksinclude ornaments, seasonal tins, throws, special occasion apparel, gift wrap,and stationery.
Sanrio Extends Hello Kitty into New Areas
Sanrio signed a co-branded deal with Little Lily to produce a collection ofHello Kitty apparel and accessories for dogs. The Hello Kitty Collection byLittle Lily includes classic and couture styles for pups already fetchingattention at upscale pet boutiques, as well as women's specialty and giftboutiques. The company also aligned with Fender for an assortment of guitars(suggested retails, $200 to $300) and musical accessories such as guitar picks,soft cases, and a portable battery-powered amplifier due in music stores andselect Sanrio stores in October.
Jim Henson Inks Manga Deal with Tokyopop
The Jim Henson Company partnered with Tokyopop Inc. on an exclusive mangapublishing deal to bring three of its fantasy titles to fans. Most notableamong them is MirrorMask due in theaters September 30, 2005. Also included inthe deal will be an all-new original graphic novel series for The Dark Crystaland Labyrinth. Tokyopop also plans to release a sequel manga to Labyrinth,which first hit the big screen in 1986 and serves as an inspiration forMirrorMask. The final title will be a prequel to 1982's The Dark Crystal, theclassic tale of good vs. evil that broke ground as the first fully animatronicfeature. Henson also recently announced it is in preproduction on a sequeltheatrical film to this cult classic.
Fisher-Price Commemorates Birthday with Sweepstakes
Fisher-Price kicked off its 75th birthday July 18 with a 75-day sweepstakesthat awards 75 $75 toy shopping sprees daily. Consumers can spend theirwinnings online or at participating retailers. One lucky family also will winthe Grand Prize: a family trip for eight to New York City, where they willreceive VIP seating at the 2005 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, stay in TheRegency hotel, see the sights, and more. Consumers can log onto
and clickon the tile featuring the 75th Birthday Sweeps or the 75th birthday logo.
Crave Entertainment Signs Rockin' New Deal
Crave Entertainment entered into an agreement with Hard Rock International tolicense and develop Hard Rock Casino video games for PlayStation2 and othervideo game systems. The Hard Rock Casino video game captures the excitement ofbecoming a rockin' high roller in The Hard Rock Casino. Gamers can try theirluck at more than 20 different casino games, while experiencing high-stakesareas, invitation-only tournaments, and many unlockable upgrades.
DVD Series to Sport Young Fan Base
Team Baby Entertainment created a new sports DVD series geared toward theinfant and preschool set. The series, whose tagline is "Raising tomorrow's fanstoday," features five 40-minute titles with officially licensed footage of theteam, stadiums, fans, and mascots, all interspersed with imagery of kids deckedout in related gear and playing with a variety of team-specific products. Theseries kicks off in time for spring training 2006 with a lineup that includesBaby Yankee, Baby Red Sox, Baby Dodger, Baby Cub, and Baby Astro. Titles foradditional teams also are in development.
Did you know that Licensing 2005 International wasvisited by licensing professionals from 100 countries? To see photos, go to
and click on thephoto gallery link on the home page.
September Drives Your Property
Whatever your mode of transport, License! puts your automotive/motorcycleproperty in front of the right group of licensees and retailers. The Septemberissue focuses on licensing related to dirt bikes and automotive accessories. Inaddition, September focuses on TV licensing trends at MIPCOM and brands. Spacereservation is 8/15, and materials are due 8/19. For more information onadvertising in September License!, contact Steven Ekstract at (212) 951-6684 or
Doneger Group and Marshal Cohen of NPD Group to Speak at LINK Las Vegas
With ongoing business shifts and trends both at the wholesale and retaillevels, executives from The Doneger Group take part in a panel discussion abouttrends and challenges at retail and wholesale as they relate to the apparel andaccessory categories and as they affect potential or existing licensingstrategies for retailers and wholesalers. In operation for more than 59 years,The Doneger Group is recognized as a leading retail merchandising, consulting,and trend forecasting and analysis firm. In addition, Marshal Cohen, chiefindustry analyst of The NPD Group and national expert on the apparel, footwear,and accessory market, will discuss the current state of licensing, where thelicensed category is headed, and how to create a forward-looking viewpoint.Cohen has in-depth knowledge of consumer behavioral shopping patterns, and hasappeared as an expert commentator on many broadcast news outlets including TheToday Show and Good Morning America. Register at
or callSylvester Jones at (212) 951-6764.
Big changes are ahead for The L.A. Office RoadShow. RoadShow Hollywood beginswith an innovative day dedicated to video gaming (September 26) includingshowcases of promotional opportunities. Also, new to RoadShow Europe is a dayof Power Sessions (October 24) in London, promotional sessions by studioexecutives and industry leaders followed by a day of European Film & HomeEntertainment property reviews. Finally, The L.A. Office launches TheEntertainment Exchange on
,an easily navigable resource providing innumerable properties, entertainmentcontacts, and promotion tracking. Visit
for more about RoadShow and take a tour of its Membership Program-the resourcefor all your entertainment marketing needs.
Submit Licenses Granted & Available Now Online
License!'s License! Finder allows you to submit licenses granted and availablenow online, which will be published on the License! Website (
) on a weeklybasis once approved by an editor. Go to
to fill out the verification form and submit your licenses granted or availablenow. Highlights from each month's online submissions will be published inLicense! magazine. Any questions, contact Alyson Grala at (212) 951-6743 or viae-mail:
For more information on LINK, visit
.For more information on licensing news and features, visit License! magazine'sWebsite,
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