Inside Popeye’s 90th Anniversary Celebration
King Features Syndicate, a part of Hearst Entertainment, is celebrating the 90th anniversary of Popeye with extensive content and merchandise rollout throughout 2019.
Wildbrain has taken over the global management of the “Popeye and Friends Official" YouTube Channel to expand the brand around the globe. To honor Popeye’s visual legacy, the studio also released new compilations of classics such as "Classic Popeye," "Popeye and Son," and "The Continuing Adventures of Popeye."
King Features is also honoring its fan base with by rebooting the popular Popeye’s Cartoon Club. The PCC was a section at the end of each Thimble Theater cartoon strip that featured fan art. The new pieces will be published each week throughout 2019.
Additional new product lines coming down the road in 2019 include a footwear collaboration with Sperry, launching in spring 2019; toys from partners like Funko, available now in U.S., Canada, U.K., Australia and New Zealand; a limited edition figurine from Mezco Toys, available worldwide at the end of the year; magazine promotions for Olive Oyl and Brutus with Magazine House Co. in Japan; hand-painted figurines and additional gift items from Arguydal in France; adult costumes from Rubie’s in the British Isles and Ireland; apparel and novelties from Trektor in Germany, Austria and Switzerland; and slippers and sandals featuring Popeye and Olive Oyl from PT Siantar Madju in Indonesia.
The company also made a push into streetwear with new collaborations with H3 and apparel from A Bathing Ape.
As the anniversary year unfolds, the company has signed new deals with Razor MD for men’s grooming products in U.S., Canada, the U.K., EU, Japan, India, Korea, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Taiwan and UAE; Rizzoli International for wall calendars worldwide; Scotch & Soda for apparel across multiple territories; HUF for clothing across multiple territories; A Bathing Ape for apparel across multiple territories; Iceberg for boys and girls apparel (1-16) across multiple territories; Zara for women’s, men’s and kids apparel worldwide; Stradivarius for women’s t-shirts worldwide; Mezco for collectible toys in the U.S. and Canada; Fun World for Halloween costumes in the U.S.; Bottleneck Gallery for limited-edition art prints in the U.S. and Canada; Esterbrook for limited edition pens in the U.S and Canada; Deep International for kids and adult apparel in Hong Kong and Macau; Sicem for sleepwear in Italy; GameFood Company Co. for sports Nutrition in Russia; Guangzhou Chuyu for apparel in China; Guangzhou Z Marketing Company for credit cards in China; G.U. Co. for apparel in Japan, China, Hong Kong and Taiwan; Topisatex for apparel accessories in Spain and Portugal; Eva Green for accessories in Mexico and Lojas Renner for apparel and accessories in Brazil. King Features is also relaunching its ComicsKingdom.com site, a hub for Comics Kingdom brands including Popeye.
The first online shop is centered on Popeye merchandise and will offer apparel, accessories and home goods for adults and children.
Popeye originally debuted in 1929 as a part of E.C. Segar’s “The Thimble Theatre” comic strip in the New York Journal-American, owned by Hearst founder William Randolph Hearst. The character made his film debut in 1933 and his television debut in 1960.