The Licensing Blog

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Schwarzenegger to Become Comic Book Character

Let’s imagine for a moment that Arnold Schwarzenegger has a bucket list. He could already check off “become a champion body builder,” “make millions as a movie star” and “have a successful political career.” Assuming it made the list, the Terminator star might soon be able to cross off cartoon and comic book character.

According to a recent report by Entertainment Weekly, Schwarzenegger is working with comic book guru Stan Lee on an animated TV series, as well as a comic book, that will mix the real life of the actor and politician with the superhuman exploits of the characters he’s played.

“The Governator” will battle the evil organization Gangsters Imposters Racketeers Liars and Irredeemable Ex-cons (or G.I.R.L.I.E. Men). The project is still in the development stages and won’t be completed until next year.

Schwarzenegger has stated that the cartoon is his plan B, and that if he could run for president, he would. Too bad that’s one he can’t check off of the list.

—Mackenzie Allison

Hit Takes Angelina Ballerina Into Publishing in Latin America

Hit Entertainment has made three new publishing deals for Barney, Thomas & Friends, and for the first time, Angelina Ballerina, in Latin America.

Editorial Vértice will debut the first Angelina Ballerina publishing program in Latin America with story, coloring and activity books for Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela. Editorial Vértice will also publish coloring and activity books for Barney and Thomas & Friends, and the Thomas & Friends magazine in Argentina, Chile, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay. In addition, Barney coloring and activity books will be published in Mexico.

Editora Fundamento will publish picture storybooks for Thomas & Friends in Portuguese available at mass retailers across Brazil. Also in Brazil, Editora Vale das Letras will be the new publisher of Thomas & Friends coloring and activity, puzzle, bath, and book plus CD ROM formats in Portuguese. The books will be rolled out to mass and specialty retailers in June.

Bella Sara Inks Two French Deals

Hidden City Entertainment, Inc., the rights holder of Bella Sara, announced a new licensing agreement with CCI Shoes. The deal was brokered by Francoise Bouvet of MJA Licensing and offers French fans a selection of shoe styles.

The license acquired by CCI encompasses a variety of shoes including slippers, canvas, sport, rain boots, snow boots, casual, and flip flops; they are scheduled to arrive in stores this summer.

Also in France, Hidden City announced a licensing partnership with video game publisher and accessory development company Bigben Interactive. The deal, which was brokered by Francoise Bouvet of MJA Licensing, grants Bigben the rights to create a Bella Sara 3D Nintendo DS video game. The game is expected to be available later this year.

Sheen Mania Alive and Well with Talking Bobble Head

Just when you thought Charlie Sheen mania was winding down, bam! The former Two and a Half Men star is supposedly in talks to rejoin the series, he has sold out a cross-country comedy tour and now is immortalized in the form of a talking bobble head from Funko.

Distributed by Entertainment Earth, a multi-channel Internet and catalog retailer of action figures, toys, bobble heads and collectibles, has announced the pre-order availability of The Charlie Sheen Talking Wacky Wobbler Bobble Head. The officially licensed talking bobble head is 7-inches tall and speaks six phrases, including:

“When you got tiger blood and Adonis DNA, man, it’s like… you get with the program, dude.”

“Winner, winner, chicken dinner… I don’t think so.  Winner, winner, SHEEN dinner!”

“Duh, winning!”

“I… I… I am on a drug; it’s called ‘Charlie Sheen’!”

“Built by trolls. Keep that in mind: phones were built by trolls.”

“Apocalypse me… the jaws of life.”

The bobble head is scheduled for release in July. Most people put bobble heads in their cubicles, but is this really work appropriate?

—Mackenzie Allison

The Borgias Merchandise Coming to Retail

CBS Consumer Products and Showtime will launch several new products this year based on the upcoming series The Borgias.

Votto Vines will import Italian wine to the U.S., Marc Ecko Entertainment will develop an interactive Facebook game for the U.S. and Canada, Epic Weapons will create costumes and collectible replica weaponry based on the show’s characters (available worldwide), Coveroo will create custom phone cases and covers for consumer electronics devices in the U.S., and Madame Alexander will offer plastic collectible and fashion dolls in the U.S.

The show follows the infamous Borgia family, which rose to fame during the Italian Renaissance. Jeremy Irons stars as Rodrigo Borgia, the cunning, manipulative patriarch of the Borgia family who ascends to the highest circles of power within Renaissance-era Italy. The series begins as the family’s patriarch becomes Pope Alexander, propelling him, his three Machiavellian sons Cesare (François Arnaud), Juan (David Oakes), Joffre (Aidan Alexander) and his daughter, Lucrezia (Holliday Grainger) to become the most powerful and influential family of the Italian Renaissance. The unbounded audacity of this original crime family went on to inspire Machiavelli’s The Prince and Mario Puzo’s The Godfather.

The show debuts April 3 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Showtime.

Brewery Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma Teams with Bradford

Mexico-based brewery Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma (CM) has partnered with Bradford Licensing. Bradford will implement a licensing program in the U.S. for the company’s brands.

This licensing partnership will enable Bradford to negotiate deals, lead the product development process and represent the trademarks with retailers on behalf of CM.

Barnes & Noble Welcomes Nickelodeon’s Digital Children’s Books to NOOK

Barnes & Noble, Inc. has partnered with Nickelodeon, offering the first-ever digital books from the brand. Books featuring Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob SquarePants and Dora the Explorer are available in a digital format, only for Barnes & Noble customers through NOOK Color Reader’s Tablet and the free NOOK Kids for iPad application.

Barnes & Noble is now offering a dozen interactive NOOK Kids Nickelodeon titles, and will expand to more than 20 next month.

Eastbound and Down Bobbleheads

Bobbleheads are a pretty whimsical thing. Funny properties lend themselves nicely to these collector’s items. I mean, come on, nobody has a Mussolini bobblehead, right?

HBO has partnered with Bif Bang Pow to create two talking bobble heads based on the main character from the comedy series Eastbound & Down, Kenny Powers. The bobbleheads feature the ex-baseball player in his uniform as well as an all-black outfit. A new bobblehead, Kenny on his jet ski, will debut in stores in late July coinciding with 2011 San Diego Comic Con.

Ol’ Blue Eyes Gets Pen Collection, Stallone to Serve as Ambassador

When I was in the sixth grade, Clueless was the biggest hit of the year—at least in the eyes of a tween girl. Maybe it was just a Midwest thing, but that movie influenced everything, from fashion and phrases to even school supplies. Everyone who was anyone wanted the pens with the feathers on the tip. Those gaudy feather pens were a status symbol. Now, years later, Italian-based manufacturer of fine writing instruments Montegrappa might be trying to accomplish the same goal—albeit for an older and more sophisticated set—with the new commemorative pens honoring Frank Sinatra.

The pens, which are part of the company’s “Icon” series, made a grand debut at Baselworld this week in Basel, Switzerland.

What to Expect
At the working end, the tip of each pen bears a musical staff and a G-clef. The barrels and caps of each pen are finished to resemble the fabric of a sharp pinstriped suit, while the ends of each cap are engraved with the fedora logo used today by Frank Sinatra Enterprises to identify authorized Sinatra items. The fountain pen models in the series have blue accents in a nod to “Ol’ Blue Eyes,” while the roller ball models bear orange accents reflective of Sinatra’s favorite color.  The pocket clips for each pen are carved in the shape of a classic microphone.

Additionally, the company has also recently announced that Montegrappa collector Sylvester Stallone has acquired an interest in the brand. Stallone will serve as a Montegrappa brand ambassador and will also provide creative input regarding new styles of pens to be introduced during 2011.

—Mackenzie Allison

Moonscoop Signs Russian Deal

Brand management and entertainment company Moonscoop has signed a deal with Channel One in Russia. The broadcaster has acquired Moonscoop preschool shows Chloe’s Closet and Dive Olly Dive 2.

Several licensees are already on board, including Bandai America Incorporated as the global master toy licensee. In addition, Dragon d’Or Editions (Editis Group) has been signed up to publish a set of small story books in France, joining further licensees for the territory: Sun City (apparel); TM (bags back-to-school and permanent) and Evasion Communication (character costumes).

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