NEW YORK -- From the sheer number of properties shown at the Licensing 96 Show, retailers can expect a fresh wave of licensed products to hit the market next year.
The sponsoring organization, the Licensing Industry Merchandiser's Association, moved its annual exposition into the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center here for the first time last month to accommodate over 340 exhibit booths showing about 2,500 individual properties. Among the properties represented were entertainment, trademarks, sports and fashion.
Although no one was predicting the next hot license, it was evident there were a lot of choices in the field to bet on.
Many of the studios were showcasing properties planned for next year and 1998, while others were reminding retailers, manufacturers and brand marketers about the endless possibilities for tie-ins with their now famous and soon-to-be familiar properties. Here is what SN spotted.
"The Borrowers" is a feature-length, live-action movie due in 1997 from PolyGram Filmed Entertainment, Beverly Hills, Calif. Based on the book of the same name, it's about miniature people who live in the cracks of a house's floor. They borrow things from their host family -- like a missing sock to make clothing and crumbs to create a gastronomic feast -- and, of course, get into predicaments. "This movie presents a tremendous opportunity for tie ins with packaged goods manufacturers because every product on the kitchen shelf or in the refrigerator will look huge," said Karin Muff of Chiat/Day, PolyGram's ad agency. Sony Signatures World of Licensing and Merchandising, Los Angeles, is banking on "Harold and The Purple Crayon," due out in summer 1998. It is a fantasy that combines live action with computer-generated and traditional cel animation. Planned for the spring of next year, "Stinkers" is a live-action motion picture about misfit school kids that plan to rescue Slappy the seal. Sony already has over 50 licensees to back "Mask of Zorro," an action adventure expected next spring. Arriving in supermarkets next month is the new "Cabbage Patch Kids" video from BMG Video, New York. New to the arena is Carrot Top, a red-haired clown with his own show this fall on the Cartoon Network, "Carrot Top's A.M. Mayhem."