jonutah wrote:But, I personally think doing sets for Sands of Time, Cars, Avatar, and the like is a mistake. I don't sense they sell particularly well and they move Lego toward a more run-of-the-mill "capitalize on this quick opportunity" brand like Mattel or Hasbro.
Sands of Time was part of a package deal and it seemed to fit the LEGO brand (buildings, animals, characters, generic I know but that is what most of the LEGO themes boil down to) and if offered an opportunity to make Middle Eastern esque buidlings/settings without having to use something more politically charged (the Crusades, anything modern) so I understand why they would do it even if it seems like it didn't work out how they hoped. Presumably the movie was expected to do much better than it did as well. As for PotC, the first three were successful and popular and there is a fourth on the way. Barring a massive miscalculation at some point in the production, part 4 will be successful and presumably lead to more movies. This was one of the Disney licenses I would have specifically sought out were I in TLG's position.
As for comparisons to Hasbro or Mattel,(spoilered to avoid wall o' text for anyone not interested)
that seems like a poor comparison to me. Hasbro produces GIJoe and Transformers and has doing so since the early 80s with very few, and very brief breaks in production. GIJoe toys, for instance, have been produced every year from 82 to present except 95, 96, and 99. That's 25 years (out of 28) of production. I believe that is longer than a number of LEGO themes. They also produce Star Wars toys and have done so since the mid to late 90s (after the Kenner merger and before the release of the Special Editions), and we've already established that SW isn't a "quick opportunity". Those are on top of Play Doh and a number of games that have been around for at least as long as I have been alive. Mattel makes Barbie and Hot Wheels, both of which are long running lines. Both companies make licensed toys and seem to be the better for it while still making very long running lines for which they are quite well known. So, I honestly don't see what kind of comparison you are trying to make because botth companies are known for their long running lines and not their "flash in the pan" ventures, just like LEGO.
Maybe you are referring to the Iron Man toys. they are part of the deal with Marvel to produce their figures. Toy Biz did the same thing when they had the license. Iron Man toys alone aren't the end goal, the entire license is. Iron Man, XMen, Fantastic Four, SpiderMan, Avengers, etc. They all have movies or will have movies in the next couple of years. Similar to the Disney deal with TLG, I doubt they were after one specific brand. Rather, they were after the whole collection. In that light, they don't all have to be a smashing success for it to be considered an overall success.
As for the possibility of PotC LEGO sets, I say go for it. I liked the movies and I look forward to new ones. The figures of the crew of the Black Pearl and the crew of the Dutchman (both in monster form) would make nice figures. Those two ships would also make good sets if they make them somewhat accurate to their movie appearances. Playsets/locations might be a little short though. Off the top of my head I can only think of the island at the end of part 2 (with the abandoned buildings where everyone fought it out for the chest with the heart), various buildings in Port Royal, likewise with Tortuga, Feng's hideout/surroundings, the tiny island that Jack and Elizabeth are left on in the first movie with the Rum.
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