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Toy Fair 2003 News II:  Licensed Product
My LIttle Pony, Strawberry Shortcake, Olivia, Fairly Oddparents, More!

There is a great deal of news about new licensed products coming from Toy Fair this year!

Bandai and Strawberry Shortcake

One of the most popular dolls of all time, Strawberry Shortcake, has been re-introduced for a whole new generation of girls. The new dolls, playsets, plush and other toys from Bandai America reflect an updated look that licensors American Greetings and DIC Entertainment have given to Strawberry Shortcake and friends. The dolls sport the same signature scents and fruit themes, but have been updated with a contemporary look complete with wide-brimmed hats, colorful T-shirts and blue jeans. The line includes Collectibles, 1.5-inch miniature wearables; The World of Strawberry Shortcake, 2.5-inch scented dolls, mini lands and houses; and Fashion and Hair Play Dolls, scented 5.5-inch dolls, some with fun themes and others packaged with special DVDs. New products for Fall 2003 include various fashion changes, accessories and pets, as well as scented collectible Berry Mini-Friends; Berry Soft Friends, 10-inch rag dolls that come in Berry Fun Fashions; and the Berry Talkin' Friends line of dolls that speak more than 100 different phrases and songs (which just goes to show you that sometimes, nostalgia and electronics do come together).

Hello Kitty from Bandai

Hello Kitty is still in vogue with smaller doll lovers.  The new Hello Kitty Snappin' Fashion series includes a 2-inch doll with removable fashions and accessories, and is available in three themes: "Get the Party Started," "Be a Designer" and "Beach Party." As for new playsets, the "At Home with Hello Kitty" line will see Hello Kitty moving into her Terrace House, which allows little girls to build their own retail store below Hello Kitty's loft style home.

Hasbro Finds Nemo

Hasbro will create toys in conjunction with Disney's underwater adventure, Finding Nemo, including various plush and figure pieces.  Finding Nemo is an animated Disney release set for Summer, 2003, which will follow the comedic adventures of 2 fish--Marlin and his son, Nemo. 

Olivia Goes To The Circus

Olivia, the sweet character based on the NY Times Best-Selling Olivia books, goes to the circus in her latest book.  Madame Alexander is producing an Olivia Goes To The Circus doll gift set, as well as more in their line of Olivia dolls, clothing and accessories.  Other companies who showcased Olivia products and toys include  Schylling Toys, Peaceable Kingdom Press, and Alex Toys.

My Little Pony

Another nostalgic brand returns in Fall 2003--My Little Pony.  The brand has been updated (no toy company, it seems, can just release a beloved old toy as it was--they are always updated.  Can you imagine what poor Raggedy Ann would look like by now if the toy companies updated her continually--she'd probably have exaggerated make up, glittered pink hair and hip-hugger jeans...)  Anyway...the new My Little Pony Rainbow Celebration ponies feature beautiful rainbow hair.  The four ponies are Sunny Daze, Wysteria, Sweetberry and Rainbow Dash.   If you prefer glitter, then there are the My Little Pony Glitter Celebration Ponies, with glitter designs in their hair. All of the ponies come with a brush to style is their beautiful hair and a special charm for the MY LITTLE PONY charm bracelet. 

Besides the new Ponys, you can get your Little Ponys' the My Little Pony Celebration Castle.  Then, there is the new baby pony figure, Pink Sunsparkle, which comes with the castle.  The Castle also comes with  two turrets, crown, hot-air balloon, heart-shaped arch, rounded arch, moat, balcony, staircase, spinning disk, bed, toy box, vanity, comb, brush, wardrobe, hanger, tutu, pony crown, storage drawer, stove, two plates, two tea cups, tea pot, saucepan, label sheet and charm, and it will retail for $39.99.  Also available will be a Birthday Celebration Razzaroo and a Cotton Candy Cafe for the Ponys.

Finally, My Little Pony, the movie, will premiere in October 2003.  MY LITTLE PONY: The Movie will be showcased at Loews  Cineplex, Cinemark and Carmine Cinemas only during ideal hours for kids - from early morning to midday.  For more information, visit www.mylittlepony.com 

The Fairly Oddparents

JAKKS Pacific announced that it has been named master toy licensee for Nickelodeon's The Fairly OddParents, including a dolls, accessories, figures, plus and playsets all centering around Cosmos and Wanda, two well-meaning sprites and the main characters.  Applause will also introduce a line of plush and figurines of the Fairly Oddparents.  JAKKS Pacific's Flying Colors division will create a line of toys based on the show, currently #2 on all TV with kids 2-11, right behind SpongeBob SquarePants. Under this new license, the line will feature plush toys, dolls and accessories, figures and playsets, role play, handheld electronics and novelty toys. JAKKS Pacific will also create a full line of activity toys and stationery products based on the property, under an earlier license agreement. 

Other licensees for The Fairly OddParents include Applause, which will introduce a line of plush, key chains, magnets and figurines.

More Strawberry Shortcake and Care Bears; Cat In The Hat

There is a definite nostalgia//back to basics trend for dolls and toys in 2003.  Of course, electronic beeping, talking and walking toys were at Toy Fair this year, but the buzz surrounded old favorites and new, solid, imaginative play toys.  A good place to see this trend was in licensed products.  Everything from Strawberry Shortcake dolls (from Bandai) to Care Bears (from American Greeting, Playmates, Cadaco) to Cat in the Hat to My Little Pony (Hasbro) licensed product were being updated and were again popular.  Some old perennials, like the Cat In The Hat, will be tied into new media projects this year, such as the upcoming Cat In The Hat movie staring Mike Myers as the Cat.  For Strawberry Shortcake, and there will be 4 television specials on Fox Kids featuring Strawberry and her friends.  These specials will also be released on DVD.  Other very popular dolls and toys didn't beep, buzz or think, and those included board games, Bratz and My Scene Barbie dolls, building sets for girls and miniature cars of all types.  In fact, Barbie sales were up over 6 percent in 2002.


Other Links To Toy Fair News
General News Licensed Products
New Doll Releases Barbie, Mattel


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Article, Graphics Copyright © 2001 Denise Van Patten

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