QUESTIONS FOR HASBRO at Conventions – 2016

Mr. JabbaJohnL

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As always, Hasbro will be at conventions and events this year, and at some of them we're hoping to get one-on-one interview time. It's not guaranteed that we'll get interview time, so unused questions will be saved for future events.

Next up is New York Toy Fair, February 13–16.

Voting is not needed as the questions will be chosen on an editorial basis, but feel free to voice support or suggest changes to existing questions.

Also, keep in mind that we'll be asking these in person, so please keep questions respectful and reasonable.

Check out recent Q&A sessions:
- New York Comic-Con, October 2015: Steve Evans, Joe Ninivaggi, and Steve Bono
- San Diego Comic-Con, July 2015: Jeff Labovitz
- Star Wars Celebration Anaheim, April 2015: Joe Ninivaggi
- New York Toy Fair, February 2015: Jeff Labovitz
- New York Comic Con, October 2014: Joe Ninivaggi
- San Diego Comic Con, July 2014: Jeff Labovitz
- San Diego Comic Con, July 2014: Bill Rawley
- New York Toy Fair, February 2014: Derryl DePriest and Jeff Labovitz


Go ahead and voice support for these questions, and suggest your own:

  1. This year's packaging artwork from Pilot Studios is phenomenal. Is there any chance you guys could work together to sell posters or prints of this work?
  2. What sort of plans do you have for Micro Machines in this coming year?
  3. Now that the movie's out, and the Resistance Outfit Rey includes a lightsaber, do you have any plans to repack the existing Rey (Jakku) figures with a lightsaber?
  4. The marketing held back the secret of Rey using the lightsaber, but it showed Finn using it. Why do none of the Finn figures include a lightsaber? Do you have any plans to release one?
  5. So, what's up with Constable Zuvio? Were you guys told that he would be a major character in the film? Did Disney suggest characters to make, or was it up to you? Are you disappointed that he does not appear in the film?
  6. With Rogue One coming out this December, then Episode 8 a year after that, are you going to continue to produce toys based on The Force Awakens after this year? Or have we pretty much seen all we are going to see in the way of Force Awakens action figures?
  7. Your arguments for the 5 Point of Articulation figures was that they would fit the budget-friendly kid market, and released the figures at a pricepoint of $6 for 1 figure, $10 for 2 packs. However, with the release of the new movie, you've raised the pricepoint on 5POA figures so that they're already $8 and $15 for 2 packs so soon after hitting market, quite an increase in MSRP, with only build-a-weapon parts thrown in to justify that increase. Is there no concern over a disconnect between product and value at that high an SRP jump? When the movie demand settles down, will the line decrease SRP back to $6?
  8. Titanium Series vehicles seems to be a hit, many stores in urban areas are reporting fast sell-throughs as soon as new cases arrive. With that in mind, might there be a return to the 6-inch Titanium Series vehicles as well? Or would that be interfering with the Disney store die-cast vehicles?
  9. You released a "motion poster" that included images of General Organa and Maz Kanata figures. Which lines will they be in, and when are they planned for release?
  10. The new Rebels speeder bike includes an Ezra with the scars he got at the end of the first season. Are there plans to update other Rebels characters for their season two appearances as well?
  11. Will The Black Series Sabine include her look from season one or season two?
  12. Many fans have expressed disappointment at some of the materials chosen for the 3.75" Force Awakens TIE Fighter and X-Wing vehicle toys. With the main complaint being the rubbery plastic used for the TIE Fighter's wings and the X-Wing's guns. This rubbery plastic causes the toys to come out of the package with warped and bent parts and makes for some very poor display pieces. We understand that these are toys and not model kits, so there are different safety requirements involved, but are you at least aware of the problem and do you have plans to fix it?
  13. The giant 6" scale First Order TIE Fighter is really impressive, but we couldn't help but notice the 01 on the box, which seems to imply that this toy is just the first of a new series of 6" scale vehicles. So, can we expect to see another massive vehicle for the 6" line soon?
 

Mr. JabbaJohnL

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Toy Fair is this weekend, and it's not clear if we'll get interview time, but let's think of some questions just in case!
 

bigbarada

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Now that the movie's out, any plans to repack the existing Rey (Jakku) figures with a lightsaber? Or at the very least ensure that every Rey figure going forward is packed with a lightsaber?

So, what's up with Constable Zuvio? Were you guys told that he would be a major character in the film? Are you disappointed that his scenes were cut from the film completely?

With Rogue One coming out this December, then Episode 8 a year after that, are you going to continue to produce toys based on TFA from the 4th quarter of 2016 on through 2017 and beyond? Or have we pretty much seen all we are going to see in the way of Force Awakens action figures?
 

bigbarada

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Do you feel that you were being unfairly criticized by the whole #whereisrey movement on social media? It seems that there were plenty of Rey toys available on Force Friday, but that many of them had simply sold out by the time the film premiered and weren't being replenished quickly enough.
 

El Chuxter

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There was an article not too long ago (I'll try to find it) that confirmed that Hasbro had designs, basic plot, and very little specifics, and Disney told them to not do too much with Rey.
 

JediTricks

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Your arguments for the 5 Point of Articulation figures was that they would fit the budget-friendly kid market, and released the figures at a pricepoint of $6 for 1 figure, $10 for 2 packs. However, with the release of the new movie, you've raised the pricepoint on 5POA figures so that they're already $8 and $15 for 2 packs so soon after hitting market, quite an increase in MSRP, with only build-a-weapon parts thrown in to justify that increase. Is there no concern over a disconnect between product and value at that high an SRP jump? When the movie demand settles down, will the line decrease SRP back to $6?


Titanium Series vehicles seems to be a hit, many stores in urban areas are reporting fast sell-throughs as soon as new cases arrive. With that in mind, might there be a return to the 6-inch Titanium Series vehicles as well?

Do you feel that you were being unfairly criticized by the whole #whereisrey movement on social media? It seems that there were plenty of Rey toys available on Force Friday, but that many of them had simply sold out by the time the film premiered and weren't being replenished quickly enough.
I do think they were unfairly criticized, but I don't want to waste time with them being politically correct about their response, saying "we're glad to see that people are considering such a serious issue and we want to make sure that fans know we have been making a lot of great products about this great character and will get more product out soon which will be great and also we were not allowed to say much by Disney in the early days but now it's great." If this question gets time, I hope it's after everything else is exhausted, not because I don't think it's a bad question, but will only lead to an answer that isn't useful.
 

Mr. JabbaJohnL

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I like the questions so far! I've added a few of my own based on them.

When we asked them about female figures last July, this was their response:

JL: We’ve always thought of Star Wars as for everybody. And we’re so excited, we just revealed Ahsoka Tano in a realistic sculpt from Rebels and what her figure looks like decoed. We’re very excited Sabine Wren came in second for the Fans’ Choice poll, so she’s absolutely now in the line. We were dying to do that figure. And we’ve got much more to come, certainly for the movie line, and beyond. The benefit of the new entertainment and the new television shows is that there’s so much in terms of strong female characters, and we like to celebrate it all.
It's an interesting topic, but I don't suspect we'd get anything different this time.

El Chuxter said:
There was an article not too long ago (I'll try to find it) that confirmed that Hasbro had designs, basic plot, and very little specifics, and Disney told them to not do too much with Rey.
That article stated that the meeting took place in January 2015, which would have been far too late for preliminary talks about merchandise. The whole thing smelled bogus. Rey wasn't excluded from all products, not by a long shot. I do find it a little amusing that non-collectors are now starting to complain about not being able to find the figures they want, when we've been doing that for years. :D
 

bigbarada

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Did anyone ever address the issue of the rubbery wings and guns on the TFA TIE Fighter and X-Wing toys? If not:

Many fans have expressed disappointment at some of the materials chosen for the 3.75" Force Awakens TIE Fighter and X-Wing vehicle toys. With the main complaint being the rubbery plastic used for the TIE Fighter's wings and the X-Wing's guns. This rubbery plastic causes the toys to come out of the package with warped and bent parts and makes for some very poor display pieces. We understand that these are toys and not model kits, so there are different safety requirements involved, but are you at least aware of the problem and do you have plans to fix it?
 

Mr. JabbaJohnL

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Did anyone ever address the issue of the rubbery wings and guns on the TFA TIE Fighter and X-Wing toys? If not:

Many fans have expressed disappointment at some of the materials chosen for the 3.75" Force Awakens TIE Fighter and X-Wing vehicle toys. With the main complaint being the rubbery plastic used for the TIE Fighter's wings and the X-Wing's guns. This rubbery plastic causes the toys to come out of the package with warped and bent parts and makes for some very poor display pieces. We understand that these are toys and not model kits, so there are different safety requirements involved, but are you at least aware of the problem and do you have plans to fix it?
They did send out straighter X-wing guns to people who wrote to customer service (which reminds me I still need to do that), so they're at least working on that, even if it's not an ideal solution. But it's a good question so I'll add it and rework it a little.
 

bigbarada

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They did send out straighter X-wing guns to people who wrote to customer service (which reminds me I still need to do that), so they're at least working on that, even if it's not an ideal solution. But it's a good question so I'll add it and rework it a little.
Huh, I wonder if they would send out new wings for the TIE Fighter. I've been considering buying a newer release TIE and, assuming the wings are less rubbery, returning my warped version.

Speaking of TIE Fighters:

The giant 6" scale First Order TIE Fighter is really impressive, but we couldn't help but notice the 01 on the box, which seems to imply that this toy is just the first of a new series of 6" scale vehicles. So, can we expect to see another massive vehicle for the 6" line soon?
 

figrin bran

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I wanted to tack on a bit to JT's question about Titanium vehicles and ask that with the relaunch of Titaniums as well as Micro Machines, is there any possibility for a relaunch of Action Fleet?
 

mtriv73

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Is there any chance for some sort of compromise on articulation that would at least bring back knee and elbow articulation?
 

Mr. JabbaJohnL

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Hasbro's new PR firm ran things much differently this time around, with one 45-minute Q&A session for everyone together as opposed to individual 10-minute sessions for each site. I'm having trouble finding the link just now, but I know JTA put up the audio. I may transcribe it if I can find the time.

On the one hand, this means a longer session for all involved, and no redundant questions from different sites. On the other hand, it means we won't be able to ask as many specialty questions anymore.
 

bigbarada

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Can we add some new questions:

With the success of TFA and the continued popularity of Captain Phasma, have you considered rereleasing her 5POA figure but this time with a vac-metalized coating? It really would make for an impressive toy.

The super-articulated Stormtroopers that we have been getting recently all have parts dating back to 2004. With Rogue One coming out, is there hope that we might see a completely new 3.75" super-articulated Stormtrooper soon?
 

Mr. JabbaJohnL

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Can we add some new questions:

With the success of TFA and the continued popularity of Captain Phasma, have you considered rereleasing her 5POA figure but this time with a vac-metalized coating? It really would make for an impressive toy.

The super-articulated Stormtroopers that we have been getting recently all have parts dating back to 2004. With Rogue One coming out, is there hope that we might see a completely new 3.75" super-articulated Stormtrooper soon?
The restructuring of the interview process means we won't get as many questions asked in the future, but we can at least keep collecting them.

I discussed vac-metal with them last time. It's not going to be happening anymore due to environmental concerns (though I believe Jakks put out a vac-metal C-3PO as an exclusive). They're looking at alternatives, but we'll see what they come up with. Since she's in Episode VIII, I expect to see a new figure, and hopefully it will be shinier.

They put out a new 5POA stormtrooper in the SDCC booth, so they're at least doing a new one in that line. The next event isn't until a few weeks after the Rogue One items hit, so we'll likely know before then if they have plans to make a new SA one.
 

El Chuxter

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Apologies if this has been asked:

"With new collectors entering the hobby, as well as some longtime 3.75" collectors warming up to the 6" figures [I don't want to say "because there are so few high-quality smaller figures," nor do I want to mention $6 clearance sales :p], many new fans of the 6" figures are finding that some core characters that have been produced in the past are difficult to find for reasonable prices on the secondary market. Do you have plans to rerelease (or revisit in some form) important characters like Boba Fett, R2-D2, Darth Vader, or Darth Maul?"

"There are quite a few characters who play important roles in the Star Wars saga (particularly the prequel trilogy), but are controversial (to put it mildly) among the fan base--while they definitely have their defenders, they've got plenty of detractors as well. Such characters include Ewoks, Jawas, C-3PO from Episodes I-II, Sebulba and the other podracers, Boss Nass, Captain Tarpals, young Anakin Skywalker, and, of course Jar Jar Binks. With The Black Series geared more toward adult collectors, what are the chances of getting such characters made in the 6" scale?"
 
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