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The Jim Henson Co. Appoints Partners to Celebrate Labyrinth’s 30th Anniversary

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The Jim Henson Co. signed new apparel and figurines licensing partners to celebrate fantasy classic Labyrinth’s 30th anniversary. The film, starring David Bowie and Jennnifer Connelly, was produced by the Jim Henson Co. and Lucasfilm Ltd.

New apparel partners include Trademark Products in the U.K. and Zen Monkey Studios in the U.S., and new partners for figurines include Funko in the U.S.

Additionally, publisher Insight Editions will release Labyrinth: The Ultimate Visual History in October, featuring artwork, interviews, and on-set photos. Jim Henson’s Labyrinth: The Board Game from River Horse will debut this summer. The classic will also launch on Blu-ray and next generation 4K Ultra HD on September 20 with special features that will take fans behind the scenes at the Center for Puppetry Arts. The film will be released in a Limited Edition Gift Set to include a Digibook in mirrorbox packaging inspired by the film’s climactic and iconic final scene, retailing initially exclusively at Amazon.

MindWare Acquires Licensing Rights for The Rainbow Fish

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MindWare acquired multi-category toy and game licensing rights for The Rainbow Fish book series worldwide.

MindWare’s first product launch, later this year, will include lacing cards, magnetic play sets, cooperative board games, an ocean fort, and activity books. Additional categories available for licensing include bedding, room décor, stationery, and craft items.

The Rainbow Fish book series has sold more than 30 million copies and will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2017.

Ghostbusters Franchise Expands to Games, Fashion, and More

The Ghostbusters franchise quickly expanding to films, games, apparel, board games, books, costumes, toys, and collectibles. Ghostbusters: The Board Game has been launched by a successful kick-starter campaign in partnership with Cryptozoic Entertainment.  This is the first officially licensed Ghostbusters tabletop game in 30 years and will be distributed to retailers this month.

In the past, the Atari video game and Mattel’s line of collectibles helped develop the Ghostbuster merchandise. Ghostbuster mobile games are also on their way with Beeline Interactive Inc.’s Ghostbusters Puzzle Fighter, a match-three, puzzle, battle game.

Rubie’s Costume Co. has been developing Ghostbuster suits for the past decade and is expanding its costume line to include kids, women, pets, and a Halloween line. Ghostbusters has partnered with Mad Engine, Freeze, Mighty Fine, and Signorelli to create a line of T-shirts, hoodie sweatshirts, jackets, and jumpsuits.

The book Ghostbusters: The Ultimate Visual History by Daniel Wallace will look back at three decades of the franchise, including films, comics, toys, video games, and the animated shows The Real Ghostbusters and Extreme Ghostbusters, and Underground Toys and Funko will develop a line of collectibles.

GeoToys Goes Around the World with Encyclopaedia Britannica

GeoToys has partnered with Encyclopaedia Britannica Inc. to develop a complete lineup of educational puzzles and games under Encyclopaedia Britannica and Britannica Kids brands. The two partners were brought together by JRL Group Inc.

GeoToys’ first product under the Encyclopaedia Britannica license is Around the World, a board game that includes more than 200 questions and answers in categories like geography, language, culture, and people from around the world.

The game will be available at Barnes and Noble, amazon.com, and several other specialty and independent toy retailers in the holiday season this year.

Shopkins Adds New Licensees

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Shopkins has secured three new partners for the brand, which is represented by Bulldog Licensing.

Character World will develop bedding, curtains, fleece blankets, hot water bottles, cushions, rugs, sleeping bags, inflatable chairs, towels, bean bags, canvas art, toddler beds, fitted sheets, and robes. RMS International will launch a stationery and craft range, including coloring books, sticker books, and puzzles. Master toy licensee Flair is supporting the brand with TV advertising and in-store activity.

Other licensees include NJ Screen Prints for apparel, Pedigree for annuals, DJ Murphy for magazines, Winning Moves for games, Pyramid for posters, and Whitehouse Leisure for amusement plush.

Hasbro, Bazooka Partner for Cross-Promotion

Hasbro and Bazooka Candy Brands have partnered for a cross-promotion in merchandising and retail, digital, and social media to launch this month through the end of the year.  Retail initiatives will feature a strong in-store presence, where shoppers can receive $3 off any one Hasbro game coupon or a chance to win a Carnival cruise, sponsored by Topps, or one of 100 Hasbro game and Bazooka Candy Brand prize packs.

Candymania.com, Bazooka Candy Brands’ site, will be rebranded and skinned, featuring Hasbro game themes showcasing the joint promotion and integration. The website will also host an interactive online promotion, sponsored by Topps, featuring an instant win game where fans can play for a chance to win game and candy prize packs. In addition, there will be cross promotions on both Bazooka Candy Brands’ and Hasbro’s social media platforms.

USAopoly to Launch Monopoly: The Big Bang Theory

USAopoly, under license from Hasbro Inc. and in conjunction with Warner Bros. Television group, has created Monopoly: The Big Bang Theory. Fans of the CBS show can buy, sell, and trade their favorite sow locations like Sheldon & Leonard’s Apartment, Penny’s Apartment, the Physics Department Cafeteria, or even Mrs. Wolowitz’s house.

Landing on a Fortune cookie card will replace the traditional Chance cards, and players can get out of jail free if they appear at a benefit thrown by President Siebery. A Roommate Agreement Card will replace the traditional Community Chest card, and players could be penalized $100 for violating The Overnight Guest Notification Clause.

Monopoly: The Big Bang Theory edition game will launch this summer in specialty stores across North America.

Nickelodeon, USAopoly Partner to Create Exclusive TMNT-Themed Monopoly Games

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USAopoly, under license from Hasbro Inc., and in conjunction with Nickelodeon, has produced two new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles-themed Monopoly games. Monopoly: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Edition and Monopoly: Teenage Mutant Turtles Collector’s Edition each include custom features. The games will launch this fall and will be available in specialty stores across North America and Amazon.com.

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Edition allows for fans to vie for 22 popular locations found throughout the animated series, including Antonio’s Pizza-Rama and Splinter’s Dojo, and six custom metal tokens including Kraang, Spike, Throwing Star, Pizza, Mutagen, and Shredder’s Mask. In the collector’s edition, players choose one of six custom sculpted vinyl tokens including Leonardo, Raphael, Donatello, Michelangelo, Splinter, and Casey Jones, and then buy, sell, and trade notorious Turtle villains on the game board.

COMMENTARY: Nightmare Before Christmas Products for Freaky Fans

While my folks are tuning into the Hallmark channel for the sappy Christmas movies that make them cry year after year, and my niece and nephew obsess over Buddy from Elf, I’m still stuck on a classic Christmas favorite that is often misappropriated by Halloween: The Nightmare Before Christmas. The movie isn’t called A Dream Before Halloween. For me, that’s enough reasoning to say it is, in fact—no matter how creepy—a Christmas movie.

Nightmare Before Christmas MonopolyUSAopoly will bring this cult classic into homes this holiday season in a whole new way with Monopoly: The Nightmare Before Christmas Collector’s Edition. Players can buy, sell, and trade iconic movie locations, such as Jack’s Tower, Oogie Boogie’s Casino, Sally’s Alley, Dr. Finkelstein’s Laboratory, Town Square Fountain, and (my favorite) Spiral Hill. This completely customized game features imagery of all the greatest characters from the film, with Jack and Sally front and center, as well as six collectible pewter tokens, including Jack’s Skull, Sally, the Mayor’s Hearse, Oogie Boogi, Zombie Duck, and Evil Teddy. Just like the classic, this game is designed for two to six players ages 8 and up and is sure to please all Nightmare fans.

Nightmare Before Christmas YahtzeeUSAopoly has also fused the creepy-cool Christmas favorite with another household board game: Yahtzee. If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years, it’s that if you love Jack, you can never have too much of him: and this game has A LOT of Jack. This travel-sized edition of Yahtzee includes a customized dice cup in the shape of Jack Skellington’s head, which also serves as a storage container for all of the game pieces. The days of one through six are over, as the included custom dice feature the frightful movie characters, including the Mayor, Oogie Boogie, Sally, and, of course, Jack. The fun doesn’t stop just there—the Pumpkin King can even be found in silhouette form on the score sheets. The Tim Burton classic has infiltrated every inch of this old school game. All of the classic rules still apply, and the game is designed for one or more players ages 8 and up.

Nightmare Before Christmas Santa Jack Skellington Pop! VinylFor those not-so-into board games (if such people exist), there are other great options that will delight come Christmas morning (as long as no skeleton man or green furry beast comes slinking down the chimney to steal them). There’s only one thing greater than Jack Skellington—and that’s Jack Skellington dressed as Santa. While it’s unfortunate that the spindly white beard covers the amazing oversized bat bowtie we’ve come to love, a skeleton in a Santa suit is still just awesome. Funko has transformed Santa Jack into a collectible figure in the Pop! Vinyl style. Fans will love his enormous gap-toothed smile, and he even holds a little present!

Nightmare Before Christmas Zero Pop! VinylWhere would the Grinch be without Max? Well, where would the Pumpkin King be without Zero, his loyal, faithful, adorably dead ghost pup? Zero has never looked cuter than in Pop! Vinyl format. Standing 3.75 inches tall, Zero features his iconic jack-o-lantern nose and the most precious dead puppy smile I’ve ever seen. Both figures are suitable for kids ages 5 and up. Sure to creep-up any Christmas décor, these figures are perfect for Nightmare fans.

So, get yourself some black wrapping paper and a shiny bow adorned with skulls and think outside the box this Christmas with these Nightmare Before Christmas collectibles. After all, some kids and adults would prefer classic darkness and creepiness to sappiness, prettiness, and/or sparkly shine.

For more commentary from Marissa, check back often. Views expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Licensing Book as a whole. We hope that you will share your comments and feedback below. Until next time!

Icing Introduces Exclusive Monopoly-Inspired Collection

Icing

Icing has teamed up with Hasbro to design a capsule collection of jewelry and accessories inspired by Hasbro’s Monopoly game. The collection will be trendy, fashionable, and affordable, and targeted at customers in their 20s. The line is designed in metallic gold and bedazzled jewels, featuring chain link, beading, and glitter details on pieces including a charm bracelet, stud earrings, iPhone cases, wallets, makeup compacts, T-shirts, and rings. Pieces from are available on icing.com.

To celebrate the launch of the collection and encourage shoppers to showcase their gaming spirit, Icing has also launched an InstagramGlam Game” promotional sweepstakes with a grand prize of a seven-day cruise for two on Carnival Cruise Lines. The sweepstakes encourages fans to express their unique sense of style by snapping and uploading a photo of themselves. Official Rules for the “Glam Game” sweepstakes can be found on Facebook.com. No purchase is necessary to enter or win.

Icing’s exclusive collection is available in-store.

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