So you've won the license, now what? This week in Toy Stories we look at product that anchored a successful brand launch. Toy Stories Chapter 10: Harry Potter Games!
Presentation theatrics aside, the primary reason Mattel won the Harry Potter business was that our product was awesome, and that especially applied to what Jim Keifer and his Games Design Team delivered. Long before we even knew who we were pitching to, we started creating concepts, because we knew someday someone was going to make a movie out of these great books. In fact, the Pitch line was so cool AND so do-able, that most of it ended up in either the pre-movie or the Movie #1 lines, and thus we ended up being ahead of the game from a development schedule standpoint. Not only could we launch in market seemingly basic (but challenging!) games like HP Trivia, Mystery At Hogwarts and the Quidditch Card Game mere months after the pitch, but also it allowed us to spend more time refining other more complex concepts into even better product. I believe it was Jim Elliot that showed us an air-powered platform that levitated a foam ball through an obstacle course. It featured Mickey Mouse as the Sorcerer's Apprentice from Fantasia, which we replaced with Harry, who turned to follow the path of the ball, and whose wand hand raised and lowered depending on the strength of the airflow controlling the ball height. It was perfect.
The Harry Potter Levitating Challenge blew WB away, and Hasbro was so upset that we won the games business, they insisted that WB make us pitch again, with no fancy sets or special effects, because they thought that there was NO WAY Mattel could beat them on games. Although extremely confident in our concepts, we were nevertheless concerned, because our strategy for the property over all was to focus on products that delivered the Hogwarts experience, rather than simply deliver on character replicas. We went back in with a simple tabletop presentation, and confirmed our win of the business based solely on our amazing product. Levitating Challenge was one of our most successful products in the line, worldwide, because it really gave kids the magical experience of learning magic at Hogwarts. Years later, the game was repurposed as Mindflex. The gift that keeps on giving!
Film Review: Lightyear
Film Review: Transformers: The Last Knight
Sunny Su, POP's New Chief Digital Officer, Leveraging digital Technologies and Platforms to Enhance the Overall Toy Experience
Jane Bredemus - Looking for the Kind Gentlemen who Introduced me to my First Licensor, Crazy Aarons!
SINGING MACHINE ANNOUNCES NEW CARE-EOKE INITIATIVE AND SOCIAL GOOD MISSION ON NATIONAL SING-OUT DAY
Kirsten Koe: Do you have what it takes to Hunt A Killer?
Determined to refresh old-school fun, Harrison Brooks kicks off second card game: Fourth Down™
Toyfully Yours: Top 15 Coolest Quotes from Toy Inventors Over the Past 30 Years
Adam Unger - Curator and Matchmaker for Products, People, Factories and Brands
People of Play Welcomes Jenna Stirling as Executive Director!
Randy Klimpert Shares his Ukulele Collection
Steve Casino Peanut Art
Everyone's Talking about POP!
Princess Etch - a Multi-Talented Etch A Sketch Artist
Joseph Herscher of Joseph' s Machines.
Matt Leacock created Pandemic... the game!
Scott Brown and Tim Swindle... are Launching a New Sport!
Daryl Andrews says... "GO TO CONVENTIONS!"
Ed Gartin is... the Evel Knievel of Inventor Relations!
Matt Leacock talks Game Design...
POPDuo: Richard Dickson, Mattel’s President & COO, and Kedar Narayan, Young Inventor Challenge AMB
POPDuo: Will Shortz and Josh Wardle
POP Duo: Elan Lee, Co-Founder, Exploding Kittens.and Jeff Probst, Host and Exec Producer, Survivor
POP Duo: David Fuhrer, MNG Director, Blue Sq Innovations & Shawn Green, past Dodgers & Mets MLB Star
POP Duo: Bob Fuhrer, Founder, Nextoy and Tom Fazio, Golf Course Designer
Toy Inventors--The Heart and Soul of the Industry
Brian Turtle: 'Endless' Stories, Advice, Kevin Bacon and More! tBR Person of the Week
Jonathan Levy on Jon2.0 - from Co-Founding Mastermind Toys to Spin Master
Andrew Perlmutter's Journey from Glencoe to Funko with Crazy Ideas that turned out Golden
Tait & Lily, Inventors of Betcha Can't!