DreamWorks Animation and Mattel's Fisher-Price Subsidiary Announce Exclusive Licensing Relationship
NEW YORK, NY, February 10, 2011 – Mattel, Inc.’s (NASDAQ:MAT) subsidiary, Fisher-Price®, Inc., and DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. (NASDAQ:DWA) today announced that they have entered into an exclusive licensing relationship in which Fisher-Price, the world’s leading brand of infant and preschool toys, will serve as the worldwide master toy licensee for a number of DreamWorks Animation’s theatrical feature film releases and television series.
Under the Mattel brand, Fisher-Price will debut the first of its new toy collections for Kung Fu Panda 2 and The Penguins of Madagascar at Toy Fair 2011. The additional DreamWorks Animation theatrical releases featured under the licensing relationship include Puss In Boots, The Croods, Madagascar 3 and Legend of the Guardians and the television properties include Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness.
“We believe that entrusting DreamWorks Animation’s beloved characters to the world’s number one toy manufacturer will ensure a fun, innovative and world-class brand presence in stores across the globe,” commented Kerry Phelan, head of worldwide consumer products and licensing for DreamWorks Animation. “Together with Mattel and Fisher-Price, we have crafted a new ‘pre-cool’ strategy to deliver compelling toy lines and unique play experiences that are age-appropriate for 3 – 8 year old movie fans.”
“We’re excited and proud to be working with a true innovator in high-quality entertainment,” said Diana Dunn-Graves, Fisher-Price vice president of marketing. “This alliance is a great fit for Fisher-Price because we put into children’s hands the fun-loving characters that DreamWorks Animation brings to life on the big and small screens.”
Po and The Furious Five return to the theatres on May 26, 2011 in DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda 2, a sequel to the blockbuster movie that generated over $631 million at the worldwide box office. The studio plans to launch the Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness television series on Nickelodeon during the fall of 2011. An online virtual world featuring the characters from Kung Fu Panda is available on www.kungfupandaworld.com.
This spring, Fisher-Price introduces the Kung Fu Panda 2 toy collection, including action figures, mini collectible figures, role play, and plush. The hallmark item of the collection is the plush Kung Fu Po Wrestler, which will be made available beginning in May, in conjunction with the film’s theatrical release. Kids can “jump into the ring” to bend, twist, flop, squeeze, and squash the soft, oversized 15-inch plush – perfect for wrestling. Po knows when he’s been challenged to a kung fu wrestling match and responds to kids with quick-witted phrases and comical sound effects.
In 2010, The Penguins of Madagascar TV series was the second highest-rated animated program on all of TV with kids 2 – 11, and it continues to generate excellent ratings on Nickelodeon, remaining the number one program during its Saturday 10:30 AM time spot on broadcast and basic cable with both kids and total viewers. Additionally, the DreamWorks Animation series now airs every weekday afternoon on Nickelodeon. The well-loved Penguin characters will make an appearance in DreamWorks Animation’s Madagascar 3, which is scheduled to be released theatrically on May 25, 2012.
This fall, Fisher-Price will introduce The Penguins of Madagascar toy collection, including figures, playsets, role play, and plush, highlighted by the new Regurgitating Rico Launcher. One of the most popular characters from The Penguins of Madagascar is ready to spew… popcorn balls that is! Inspired by the fan-favorite, Rico the penguin, kids can act out his trademark skills with the Regurgitating Rico Launcher. To start the action, kids simply feed up to three balls through Rico’s mouth to get ready for the launch. With a swift pull on his legs, Rico lets out a squawk, and boom! Watch those popcorn balls fly! Rico’s kooky sound effects are triggered by pulling his legs back and pushing his feet forward.
About DreamWorks Animation
DreamWorks Animation creates high-quality entertainment, including CG animated feature films, television specials and series, live entertainment properties and online virtual worlds, meant for audiences around the world. The Company has world-class creative talent, a strong and experienced management team and advanced filmmaking technology and techniques. DreamWorks Animation has been named one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” by FORTUNE® Magazine for three consecutive years. In 2011, DreamWorks Animation ranks #10 on the list. All of DreamWorks Animation’s feature films are now being produced in 3D. The Company has theatrically released a total of 21 animated feature films, including the franchise properties of Shrek, Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda and How to Train Your Dragon.
Fisher-Price, Inc., a subsidiary of Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) located in East Aurora, N.Y., is the leading brand of infant and preschool toys in the world. The company’s legacy of high quality toys has enhanced early childhood development for more than 80 years. The Fisher-Price Play Laboratory, celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, was the first child research center of its kind in the industry. Herman Fisher established the Play Lab to observe real children playing with the company’s toys during various stages of development. The Play Lab remains at the heart of product development today. Some of the Company’s best-known “classic” brands include Little People®, Power Wheels® and View-Master®. Fisher-Price is also a leading developer of baby gear products (infant swings, bouncers, high chairs), as well as a wide array of character-based toys inspired by high quality children’s programming such as Dora the Explorer™, Kung Fu Panda 2™, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Penguins of Madagascar™ and Thomas & Friends™ The Company’s web site, www.fisher-price.com<http://www.fisher-price.com>, provides valuable information and resources to parents and grandparents.
Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
This document includes certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company’s plans, prospects, strategies, proposals and our beliefs and expectations concerning performance of our current and future releases and anticipated talent, directors and storyline for our upcoming films and other projects, constitute forward-looking statements. These statements are based on current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections about the industry in which we operate and management’s beliefs and assumptions. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions which are difficult to predict. Actual results may vary materially from those expressed or implied by the statements herein due to changes in economic, business, competitive, technological and/or regulatory factors, and other risks and uncertainties affecting the operation of the business of DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. These risks and uncertainties include: audience acceptance of our films, our dependence on the success of a limited number of releases each year, the increasing cost of producing and marketing feature films, piracy of motion pictures, the effect of rapid technological change or alternative forms of entertainment and our need to protect our proprietary technology and enhance or develop new technology. In addition, due to the uncertainties and risks involved in the development and production of animated feature projects, the release dates for the projects described in this document may be delayed. For a further list and description of such risks and uncertainties, see the reports filed by us with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our most recent annual report on Form 10-K and our most recent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. DreamWorks Animation is under no obligation to, and expressly disclaims any obligation to, update or alter its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in assumptions or otherwise.
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