The first official Q&A of Spring. It's Hasbro's answers to SSG questions for April 10th, 2009. Thanks again to Hasbro for the answers, to all the folks who sent in questions and especially those who voted on them.
Hasbro Q&A for the week of April 10th
SSG: When it comes to prequel Senators, we haven't seen much lately. The most asked of them is the Senator Grebleips figure, the E.T. alien - will we ever be getting this figure, is it just unlikely because it's a background alien, or is it totally off-limits because it's an easter egg from another film? Also, what about seeing senate figures from Ep 1 like Edcel Bar Gane, Sei Taria, Toonbuck Toora and Mot-Not Rab?
Hasbro: Senator and Separatist figures have been very slow sellers for us, so while we're not ruling them out, they are not high on our list of figures to target. We're confident that we'll get around to more some day, especially if the collector base rebounds as these figures are 100% collector-targeted. Until then, they'll stay on the sidelines. Grebleips is off limits per Lucasfilm, joining (among a few others) the oft-asked for female Cantina denizens, Holiday Special live action figures, and Tyvokka as figures we cannot/will not pursue.
SSG: With the new Droid Factory sets, included is a Corran Horn / Whistler 2-pack. As Corran Horn is an EU character, he is seen as not likely to get multiple figures, so as such, why is this 2-pack coming with a standard orange flight costume rather than Horn's more distinctive green-hued version? Whistler also is lacking his overall green tinge, but since this seems like it may be the only Corran Horn figure fans will see, why not make it as characteristically accurate as possible?
Hasbro: This one is in the orange jumpsuit, which is one of his outfits from the novel and the one we went with. Regarding the coloration of Whistler, we take Lucasfilm's direction on all deco, with the intent of being as accurate as possible to the reference material. As for additional Corran Horn figures someday, we would not rule out the possibility, and the green suit would be a great alternate deco for further down the road. How far, we don't know, considering how long it took to get him into the lineup in the first place. We're stoked to be bringing the pair out, in any case.
SSG: With the Build-A-Droid line, there's been some confusion about the naming with a few of the figures. First off, there's R2-N6 who was properly named at last year's Comic-Con presentation yet later got renamed to R2-L3. Second, there's the upcoming U-3PO figure that has a silver tone rather than the slightly brassy look from the movie, and is shipping in an ESB wave, a film which already has a silver protocol droid, E-3PO, except that character has white instead of yellow eyes. What's the deal with these build-a-figures and their identity issues?
Hasbro: We do not select the droids to match the film theme of the wave, but instead based on which ones we feel are important to do; as one of the first droids we see in EpIV, we felt U-3PO was the choice to go with. As to the R2-L3, it turns out that R2-N6 was not an official Lucasfilm-given name for this droid, so we later switched based on Lucasfilm direction. This reversal has happened a few times with the buildable astros, since we have targeted several "unmade" droids who had not yet been given official designations.
And our questions at CollectionStation.com:
- Some collectors shy away from EU items unless they tie into major characters from the films, or strongly tie into the movie saga story. With that in mind, what are the chances of seeing figures of these influential EU characters: the ghost of Luke Skywalker (Legacy), Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas, Darth Plagueis, or even a young Count Dooku?
- Based on your slideshow at Toy Fair, there seems to be a discrepancy on the subject of exclusive 2-pack figures. The Wal-mart Grievous Droid Factory figure with new cloth cloak shown in the slide was the 4-armed basic figure from 2005's ROTS line, however what was said during the slideshow was that it'd be the super-articulated 2008 figure. Which Grievous will actually be coming in that set with the new cloak? Also, it was noted that that the Target-exclusive Geonosis Arena figure pack Jango Fett would be tweaked, but there was no explanation given and the figure looks the same as the Evolutions version. What's the change there, can fans hope that the evo figure jumpsuit's lilac color is finally being changed to a more blue-gray look as seen in the movie?
- As shown at Toy Fair, the upcoming Geonosis Assault battle pack is coming with the long-requested Gunship pod turret and 2 clone pilots. Since each gunship had 2 turrets in the film, that will require buying 2 sets, making 4 pilots. However, the gunship is manned by 2 pilots in the cockpit, and 2 standard grunts in the turrets. While thrilled to get the pods and more clones, could we get a regular clone trooper helmet as well as, or even instead of 1 of, those pilot helmets so the gunships can be accurately, completely manned?