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  1. #1

    Question Lucas scaling back marketing - what effect will this have on Saga Toys?

    Well, I'd just like to say I've been reading the boards for about a month now here and the posts are great. Kudos to all of you for the advance information - I'm also new to collecting SW figs. I have quite a few from back in the day (I'm 26 now), but I wanted to start a collection and am more ready than ever for all the new figs and vehicles.

    Here's my question/comment - what impact do you think the dismal sales (and overpopulation) of EP1 related merchandise will have on EP2. First, I think there will be a scale back on allotments, at least for now depending on how popular the figs are. I also do think that this movie will really wow alot of the people who lost faith in TPM. It doesn't seem like there is much hype for the figs right now, so many collectors will probably be able to find what they want. Right before/after May 16th, everyone might be clamoring for the figs. Here's a snippet of Newsweek's latest article:

    More damaging than the poor marketing acumen, though, was the bad taste all that merch left in everyone’s mouth. It was crass. Paired with an inferior movie, the overkill made fans suspect Lucas was taking his money and laughing all the way back to Skywalker Ranch. He got that message loud and clear. “The first prequel hurt the franchise, and it hurt tremendously,” says Jim Silver, publisher of trade magazine The Toy Book. “The collector was not in love with Jar Jar. Hasbro has scaled back dramatically. Everybody is being much, much more conservative.” (Hasbro did not return calls for this story.) Some retailers are getting out of the “Star Wars” business for good. Tiemaker Ralph Marlin&Co. won’t be back, nor will KFC’s Oleinik. Odds are that Lucas won’t miss them. To avoid a repeat of “Menace,” he sliced the number of licensees for “Attack of the Clones” by two thirds. For one thing, there will be 8 billion fewer cans of soda: Lucasfilm didn’t want a soft-drink sponsor this time around, Pepsi says.

    And here's the link:

  2. #2
    I felt more than a little overwhelmed on May 3rd of 1999. Suddenly the market was flooded with so much merchandise that I had to severely limit my spending and prioritize. For instance, action figures took precedence over Queen Amidala Hand Lotion. The soundtrack was more important to me than cup toppers, etc.

    Hopefully, we will see a seriously lack of merchandise this time around. Nothing makes you want a product more than it's non-existence. Except maybe for the hand lotion.
    Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split. - Robert E. Howard

  3. #3

    I know

    exactly what you mean. Now, I really didn't collect much Star Wars stuff in growing up as well as through college since I didn't have any MONEY. About the time TPM was out, I could go out and buy things. For some reason, I did not.

    Well, heh, I guess I know the reason. There was just TOO MUCH crappy TPM merchandise, and I didn't feel that it deserved my hard-earned dinero. Yoda cup-topper? It seemed like Lucas' marketing became the empire, and we rebels had to defy what was there. But oh well, I really like the sculpts of the new characters and everything in the new movie seems great!

  4. #4
    Registered Wolfwood319's Avatar
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    Oct 2001
    I'm everywhere you want to be...
    I think that definately overall there will be less merchandise and marketing. Like BB said, back in '99 there was everything from fast food cup toppers to hand lotion. This time around there will be a lot less in terms of products, i.e. hand lotion, toothpaste, clothes, advil, etc.

    I think overall the action figures though will not be scaled down as much. We've already gotten in reports that some stores have received more of an intial shipment for AOTC than for TPM. Now, that doesn't mean that in 2 weeks they'll be getting more shipments in though. I think that the figures will be scaled down, but not to the point of scarcity. There will be plentey to go around come May. I just don't think we're going to be seeing a whole aisle dedicated to AOTC like they did with TPM.

    I too believe that AOTC will not draw in many "outside" consumers. Most of the figure sales will come from the collectors that have been purchasing SW figures for the last few years. I don't think too many 10 year olds are going to be going ape for AOTC, and for many reasons.

    TPM did leave a sour taste in the consumer and film market. People won't have an interest in the movie as much, and I don't think that this movie will appeal to kids as much either.

    Summed up, AOTC won't be the "event" that TPM was. It'll just be like any other blockbuster movie coming out, nothing more. Marketing and merchandising has been scaled down, but not wiped out. We'll still see AOTC ly pops, party favors, and kids clothing, but just not as much as we did in '99.
    "Watch this, I'm going to horrify you into a coma..."

  5. #5

    This is scaling back???

    I honestly don't think that there will be too much of an impact on the saga line. I think the merchandising outside of the toy line (which is the most reliable and, methinks, profitable tie-in) will be clearly diminished, although you'd never know it looking at all the food products and whatnot. I'm glad there isn't as much proliferation of the tie-ins in the fast food sector. I think htat got a little out of hand.
    OK... I BLOG. YOU READ. at
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  6. #6
    Registered Dryanta's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    I agree with everyones comments so I won't add to that.I just wanted to say welcome to scruffy_ lookin'hope you enjoy it here.Jar Jar should be along with your complimentary gift soon
    Bye to all.thanks for some good times.

  7. #7

    Saga toys scaling up.

    There will be more Saga figures available on April 23rd 2002 than back on May 3rd 1999. It looks like Hasbro's production will be the same in total quantity of figures AND we will have a wider variety/more resculpts to choose from. We will not be seeing all the food promotions as before.

    30 figures on April 23rd? That's scaling up.

  8. #8
    Hey guys,

    I totally agree with you on the fact that there is scaling up on the figure assortment, and it's funny that since I showed my sister all the new figs she's going to be shopping with me too. The Jango Australian scene I downloaded last night is what got her started -

    This movie looks like it's going to be plenty awesome.

    Funny, but as the article in Newsweek (and Time I believe) said George is indeed cutting back promotions by 2/3rd. I guess the current feeling in the Lucas camp right now is that many were not happy with TPM (?), and it's time to get back to basics in a wonderful way. I wonder if mass America knows that it is coming out May 16th.

    I actually want to see much less buzz than before - you can't have too many Taco Bell drink toppers like the last one. Some of the things put out last time were downright stupid. I really want the movie to show its worth, and then have it fuel the awesome collection of characters there are!


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