New American Idol Tour Extends Audition Process
FremantleMedia Licensing Worldwide, Americas teamed up with Glowcast Ventures
to extend the audition process to 50 cities across the nation with The Idol
Auditions Tour. The tour launches at local malls and other locations in August
and will allow nearly 20,000 more people to try out for the show's sixth
season. The first 500 people to arrive at the audition site and meet all the
requirements of an American Idol contestant then earn the right to perform in
front of a live audience for the chance to gain access to one of the primary
audition sites for the show. After performing, winners from each of the 50
local auditions will be fast-tracked through the stadium audition process in
their region, having pre-cleared the early round of auditions. Each of the
local events also will include a variety of fan-friendly experiences and
interactive 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 4Kids
Entertainment, Inc., and MGA Entertainment. The CGI-animated television series
will air Saturday mornings on 4Kids TV on Fox. The 4Kids TV girls' block
currently includes Winx Club and Mew Mew Power. Japanese-animated Magical
Doremi also will join the block when the fourth season of 4Kids TV launches
Saturday, September 10.
In other news, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are expected to
come to the silver screen in early 2007 supported by 4Kids Entertainment
handling exclusive worldwide merchandising and Playmates Toys with a new toy
line. The Mirage Group, the group of companies that owns the property, had
licensed the film animation rights to Imagi Animation Studios. Imagi has
reached an agreement with The Weinstein Co. and Warner Bros. Pictures for those
companies to distribute the CGI-animated feature film.
Partnership Supports Kid Inventors
By Kids For Kids Company and Mattel signed a global marketing partnership
agreement giving Mattel the right of first refusal for toy and game concepts
invented by kid inventors represented by BKFK. Mattel also will be the
exclusive presenting toy sponsor of the By Kids For Kids-Xerox 2005 National
Invention Competition and will sponsor the BKFK Brainstorm Challenge summer
museum program. The competition will begin inviting submissions for toys,
games, and sporting goods ideas in fall 2005. The Brainstorm Challenge is a
BKFK-created innovative thinking camp program running in more than 50
children's and science museums across the country this summer. This
experiential, hands-on program invites kids to explore their creativity by
constructing 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, and
merchandising rights from children's authors such as Ian Falconer (Olivia),
Eric Carle (The Very Hungry Caterpillar), Rosemary Wells (Max & Ruby), and
Babette Cole (Princess Smartypants). The acquisition also will strengthen
Chorion's position in the U.S., following the recent launch of Make Way for
Noddy on PBS. Equally, Chorion's experience and presence in Europe and Asia
will assist the growth of Silver Lining's brands around the world. Silver
Lining co-founders Amory Millard and Diana Manson join the Chorion senior management
RJM Licensing to Rep Seasonal Titles
RJM Licensing Inc. partnered with The Copyrights Group to represent and further
expand the North American merchandise programs for "The Snowman" and "Father
Christmas." Initial categories under consideration for the seasonal books
include ornaments, seasonal tins, throws, special occasion apparel, gift wrap,
Sanrio Extends Hello Kitty into New Areas
Sanrio signed a co-branded deal with Little Lily to produce a collection of
Hello Kitty apparel and accessories for dogs. The Hello Kitty Collection by
Little Lily includes classic and couture styles for pups already fetching
attention at upscale pet boutiques, as well as women's specialty and gift
boutiques. 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 and
select Sanrio stores in October.
Jim Henson Inks Manga Deal with Tokyopop
The Jim Henson Company partnered with Tokyopop Inc. on an exclusive manga
publishing deal to bring three of its fantasy titles to fans. Most notable
among them is MirrorMask due in theaters September 30, 2005. Also included in
the deal will be an all-new original graphic novel series for The Dark Crystal
and Labyrinth. Tokyopop also plans to release a sequel manga to Labyrinth,
which first hit the big screen in 1986 and serves as an inspiration for
MirrorMask. The final title will be a prequel to 1982's The Dark Crystal, the
classic tale of good vs. evil that broke ground as the first fully animatronic
feature. Henson also recently announced it is in preproduction on a sequel
theatrical film to this cult classic.
Fisher-Price Commemorates Birthday with Sweepstakes
Fisher-Price kicked off its 75th birthday July 18 with a 75-day sweepstakes
that awards 75 $75 toy shopping sprees daily. Consumers can spend their
winnings online or at participating retailers. One lucky family also will win
the Grand Prize: a family trip for eight to New York City, where they will
receive VIP seating at the 2005 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, stay in The
Regency hotel, see the sights, and more. Consumers can log onto http://www.fisher-price.com/ and click
on 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 to
license and develop Hard Rock Casino video games for PlayStation2 and other
video game systems. The Hard Rock Casino video game captures the excitement of
becoming a rockin' high roller in The Hard Rock Casino. Gamers can try their
luck at more than 20 different casino games, while experiencing high-stakes
areas, 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 the
infant and preschool set. The series, whose tagline is "Raising tomorrow's fans
today," features five 40-minute titles with officially licensed footage of the
team, stadiums, fans, and mascots, all interspersed with imagery of kids decked
out in related gear and playing with a variety of team-specific products. The
series kicks off in time for spring training 2006 with a lineup that includes
Baby Yankee, Baby Red Sox, Baby Dodger, Baby Cub, and Baby Astro. Titles for
additional teams also are in development.
Licensing Fact: Did you know that Licensing 2005 International was
visited by licensing professionals from 100 countries? To see photos, go to www.licensingshow.com and click on the
photo gallery link on the home page.
September Drives Your Property
Whatever your mode of transport, License! puts your automotive/motorcycle
property in front of the right group of licensees and retailers. The September
issue focuses on licensing related to dirt bikes and automotive accessories. In
addition, September focuses on TV licensing trends at MIPCOM and brands. Space
reservation is 8/15, and materials are due 8/19. For more information on
advertising 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 retail
levels, executives from The Doneger Group take part in a panel discussion about
trends and challenges at retail and wholesale as they relate to the apparel and
accessory categories and as they affect potential or existing licensing
strategies 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, chief
industry analyst of The NPD Group and national expert on the apparel, footwear,
and accessory market, will discuss the current state of licensing, where the
licensed category is headed, and how to create a forward-looking viewpoint.
Cohen has in-depth knowledge of consumer behavioral shopping patterns, and has
appeared as an expert commentator on many broadcast news outlets including The
Today Show and Good Morning America. Register at http://www.linkconference.com/ or call
Sylvester Jones at (212) 951-6764.
News from The L.A.
Big changes are ahead for The L.A. Office RoadShow. RoadShow Hollywood begins
with an innovative day dedicated to video gaming (September 26) including
showcases of promotional opportunities. Also, new to RoadShow Europe is a day
of Power Sessions (October 24) in London, promotional sessions by studio
executives and industry leaders followed by a day of European Film & Home
Entertainment property reviews. Finally, The L.A. Office launches The
Entertainment Exchange on http://www.laoffice.com/,
an easily navigable resource providing innumerable properties, entertainment
contacts, and promotion tracking. Visit http://www.laoffice.com/
for more about RoadShow and take a tour of its Membership Program-the resource
for all your entertainment marketing needs.
Submit Licenses Granted & Available Now Online
License!'s License! Finder allows you to submit licenses granted and available
now online, which will be published on the License! Website (http://www.licensemag.com/) on a weekly
basis once approved by an editor. Go to http://www.finder.licensemag.com/
to fill out the verification form and submit your licenses granted or available
now. Highlights from each month's online submissions will be published in
License! magazine. Any questions, contact Alyson Grala at (212) 951-6743 or via
e-mail: mailto:[email protected].
For more information on LINK, visit http://www.linkconference.com.
For more information on licensing news and features, visit License! magazine's
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