Tag Archives: sequel

Mattel Disney Pixar Diecast CARS: CARS 2 Coming, What to Expect For the 1:55 Diecast Line?

mcq-mater.jpg

This is exactly the question Mattel is trying to plot out. We are just about exactly 4 years until the sequel returns and the toys for CARS 2 hits the shelves. We are in unknown territory. Most sequels these days are spaced no more than 12-18 months apart or when there is unexpected “next” part fans are eager for like THE HOBBIT, most marketing and especially the action figures just take a rest. There might be some expensive statues or swords (in the case of LOTR) just so you don’t 100% forget but there’s nothing really on the toy shelves until the movie is really ready to come back … but here, CARS, 2 YEARS later, almost to the day is going just as strong if not actually stronger than it was April 2006 when expectations for CARS was pretty low when merchandise started to hit the shelves.

Yes, 2 years later, people are still stripping the shelves clear. Sure Mater & LM might sell a little slower than April 2006 but not much slower and sure, there are pegwarmers but out of a box of 18 that hits the shelf, what’s really left out of that 18 for long? Not many. There are kids turning 1.5 or 2 or in many cases, 39 🙂 who just realized as they watched it on ENCORE this month – hey, this movie is actually GOOD and these CARS are nice …

In case you hadn’t noticed, CARS is the STAR WARS of diecast.

Like STAR WARS, the action figure/toys – it makes its own rules.

There has never been a diecast licensed film line that has sold over 100 DIFFERENT cars and is still going strong. The James Bond cars sold well and you can always sell a Speed Racer Mach 5 or a 1966 Batmobile but none of those lines are 100 cars strong and with NO END IN SIGHT.

Not many diecast car lines – let alone a movie licensed one that almost literally has people bursting at the seams and eager to spend upwards of $300 for the Speedway of the South Piston Cup racer set.

So, what will the 48-month gap (from now) between CARS movies mean for us, the 1:55 diecast scale collector?

The normal course of action is easy – look at Speed Racer, you flood the market and you hope to ride it out until the holidays (when the movie DVD comes out also) – after that, you pretty much let the line wither but CARS is still going strong – even with lulls, gaps, recalls and empty shelves, we came back when the CARS came back. So how does Mattel sustain it for 4 more years?

SEPARATE THE HERD

You might divide out the long-timers/serious from the casual/newbies. So, you keep the sealed individual boxes with mostly CARS that appeals to casual/newbies – after all, if they don’t see LM, Mater, & Fillmore, maybe they’ll just wait to buy it for the 2-year old. You only add new CARS that are visually appealing to newbie/casual collectors like Chuki, Elvis RV, etc … this also helps Mattel space out the remaining CARS that we know have names (from the Blu-Ray finder game) and maintains a steady selling pace at the stores instead of feast or famine and this way, even CARS like Sheriff becomes a mini treasure hunt as he might only appear every other month now that there are over 100 different CARS out. Because while us rabid collectors are eager for every variation – to most – Pit Crew Fillmore with the gas cans is much less enticing than than just regular Fillmore.

Of course, there are another 500 CARS without names or not in the Blu Ray Finder game that people would still be willing to buy … the Pizza truck? Camera Crews?

Or variations without specific mention in the Blu Ray Finder such as perhaps Ghostlight Mater with a blue light or Parking Boot McQ. I’m sure we could come with 50 CARS in 4-minutes time.

For the serious collectors, Mattel makes more money with the Gift/3-packs by limiting them to the Piston Cup racers – of course, not only reselling you the racer but not everyone might want ALL the crew chiefs or ALL the pit crew so by bundling them, Mattel doesn’t have to take a chance that the precious single peg space is clotted with a non-important peg warmer and this way, they also sell you a higher margin $9.99/$10.99 3-pack (probably with at least one CAR you already own also) – same with the launchers. A $3.99 CAR packaged with a $1.00 piece of plastic is nice at $7.99 (well, for Mattel). And of course, for gift giving, both seem nicer so Mattel wins either way. At the holiday, grandma will probably buy a launcher and a 3-pack since they are clearly “more” CAR

And of course, serious collectors are certainly not going to stop buying single carded CARS but a newbie parent who thinks “Lil Josh” is now ready for diecast CARS, who is Dudley Spare? They’d much rather have a Mater or even Wingo … and as long as there is a new CAR or two every 3-4 weeks, the pace might even be better for long term collectors … sure, it was a fun thought that maybe 50% of each case was new but this way, we also don’t have to hunt as hard … and maybe we won’t drop out from giving up …

WHAT ELSE?

And I’m sure we’ll see more exclusive playsets, probably at TRU.

The 4-year gap is also presumably good news for those awaiting Frank, Banshee, the RV’s or the trailers.

The problem is two-fold – as metal, they would be hella heavy and hella expensive in the amount of metal they use but of course, Mattel could charge an appropriate amount but I think the amount of people willing to pay for a in-scale Frank at $19.99 or Banshee at $29.99 is limited (and just as importantly, retailers would not be very excited) so maybe Mattel will launch a real points redemption program – it’s one way to clear the Boosts off the shelves so maybe when Mattel is ready to switch from the WORLD OF CARS motif, they will launch a points redemption program to buy an in-scale Frank for $12.99 if you send 5 WOC card backs (retailers will rejoice as you buy up the ‘old’ CARS to mail away). Sometimes it pays to never throw away anything … but if Mattel is going to do that, they’ll probably launch some CARS Club … for $29.99, get a “free” Red Ransburg CAR plus the right to buy limited edition CARS such as Frank & Banshee … because there’s no way to guess the actual number of people willing to buy a much more expensive part of a set, it’s better to create the illusion of limited availability and charge the full amount (instead of making only wholesale).

More so with the RV’s. What is the interested number? A thousand? Ten thousand who would buy 90% of the RV’s but after that number, the % of interested parties falls to a single digit. I think the Rv’s fall into two camps – you want or do not want – so how is Mattel supposed to guess and what’s the difference if it’s all plastic or some metal? Does that change the buying interest by much and of course, price. To retailers, they won’t really get it – how much shelf space do you want us to devote to an RV? Again, it might have to be a club item … perhaps a box set of 4 for $19.99 or $24.99 (all plastic would be my guess).

Now, the truck trailers are visually more enticing but they take up room. There’s no way any retailer is going to be interested in 36 of them … Dale Jr, The King & LM? Of course. Mood Springs? Gasparin? Not so much … these might be a mix of stores and the club or Mattel could just sell a giant box set NEXT year for $249 … (all plastic, of course).

THE WILD CARD

The wild card in the 4-year gap is the CARS short – is it a mythical short? Is it coming as soon as Wall-E or in front of next year’s Pixar’s movie? Because within a 5-minute short, you could pretty much introduce 500 more CARS with a few pans across the vista or speedway or LM & Sally going to an award show … you could add this short to the CARS Blu Ray SE with a CARS short Blu Ray Finder Game II … if that’s the case, it revitalizes collectors eager for … the 6 mythical Piston Cup racers? A Wall-E car? … and fills in the gap for 2011 until the previews start appearing for 2012 and early CAR releases.

BRANCHING

Of course, some purists might claim the ‘short’ is not really the full CARS movie and doesn’t count … but like the Mini’s, Mattel just starts jumping off to other tangents and are less concerned than being ‘canon.’ Maybe we really get a ‘flashback’ cards with Stanley as a real CAR and not an accessory/statue? Or CARS from the video game? Or the main CARS with more moving elements – maybe McQ with lencular eyes or Mater’s tow line that really unspools?

It will be interesting to see how Mattel is able to maintain interest but keep bringing in new parents/family & kids …

11 Comments

Filed under Advertising, Film, Marketing, Media, Retail, Toys, TV

Pixar CARS 2 Sequel: Rumors, Rumors, Rumors

mcq-doc.jpg

According to JV Pixar News, there are rumors of a CARS 2 sequel already in the planning stages.

But Pixar said they hated sequels:

True, but that was because when they signed their distro deal with Disney, they didn’t realize Toy Story 2 didn’t count in that tally – that they needed a total of 5 original films to complete their contract so of course, making sequels just extended the contract further and creatively, sequels do tend to be less satisfying. But now as part of Disney, whatever films they actually release doesn’t matter whether it’s Toy Story 3 or Wall-E.

Straight to DVD sequel?

“In a major strategy shift, the Walt Disney Co. said it will stop making lucrative direct-to-DVD sequels of such classic animated films as Cinderella, a move that reflects the growing influence of former Pixar Animation executives John Lasseter and Steve Jobs, who once called the films “embarrassing.”

In other words, no.

Pixar takes years to make a movie …

True. So, according to “normal” schedule, we shouldn’t expect a CARS 2 very soon.

Pixar does one movie a year …

Yes, you are correct, sir so maybe 2011? Since 2008 is Wall-E, 2009 is “Up” and 2010 is TS 3 …

200px-wall-e.jpg

But now as part of Disney?

They prefer to only make one movie a year but CARS might be different. The change from TS1 and TS 2 was also technology but now technology is fairly stabilized – sure, you can get more processing power cheaper but a leap in technology? Not really. CARS might be simpler since the only the front and eyes of the car changes as it’s moving along so maybe a sequel can be completed faster.

No evidence of sequel

Unless they’re taking on the secrecy of Apple Computers, no actor claims they are working on the sequel. There apparently is a ‘short’ that might play in front of next year’s “Wall-E.”

Paul Newman and 2009?

Apparently Paul Newman said something about a CARS sequel in 2009 but maybe he was refering to the short? Also from JV Pixar News via MiceAge.

But Cars wasn’t a massive hit

Yes, but DVD sales are strong and while people mumble about sequels, they go and see them even if they are middling efforts like Ice Age or Shrek 3.

Merchandising

In case you hadn’t notice, CARS merchandise is selling like the movie came out yesterday. The diecast line is flying off the shelves a year later – rare for movie licensing now and virtually unheard of for a diecast line … (In case you’ve missed out, our post to get you up to speed).

People are clamoring – whether Pixar is interested or delivers a sequel is another matter … right now, I would think 2011 is much more likely than 2009.

All the Cards & CARS Lining Up?

Coincidentially or NOT, 2011 is the 10th anniversary of Disney’s California Adventure and they are unveiling a new CARSLAND section.

2_1.jpg

From Disney’s Annual Report (link above), they offer up drawings of future rides and attractions – lots of Pixar rides & attractions.

So, what could be a better tie-in? A new ride and a movie to open on the same day – June 17, 2011? (Friday and the beginning of summer break)? See you in line.

UPDATE – RUMORS CONFIRMED

Our latest post.

OUR OTHER CARS POSTS:

THE BASICS

If you want a recap of the Mattel Pixar CARS line from the beginning.

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: It’s What to Collect

Unlike other toys/hot items that stay hot for a few weeks or months – this Mattel Pixar CARS diecast line has pretty been SIZZLING for 16 months – not just rare but almost un-heard of.

Of course, we would love to tell you that if you show up here at 7:00 AM, you are assured of seeing it on the shelve un-touched … or course, that is not really possible with this line due to real demand and eBay “re-distribution” demand but we have tried to sum up why it’s seems impossible and some buying tips that while not foolproof, might make things slightly easier …

Mattel Pixar Cars: I Want to Buy But Where?

BUYING CASES & WHAT’S NEXT

First, one way to skip the driving around is to buy sealed cases, here is a brief rundown on what that is AND what are the CARS coming this holiday season (the last two months of 2007):

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: New Sealed Boxes

And what’s coming in 2008:

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: New Sealed Boxes Holiday 2007 & 2008

Or what the latest on the shelf cards & CARS look like?

Mattel Pixar: What’s in Stores Now

HOW TO COLLECT

For those on the intermediate & advanced stages of this obsession (yes, I has the fever! I has the fever 🙂 ) … you’ll want a “field guide” to spotting what’s what:

A Basic Checklist (in spreadsheet form)

The checklist offers a few versions on how you like your poison 😉

Then of course, a more indepth guideline on how to collect them – just one of each? one of each available on a different card?

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: How to Collect

As you progress further, you might need or want a guide to understanding what do the three different designs on the front indicate and how complete of a collector you want to be:

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: Card Backs

Info on the Blu-Ray Dinoco “Blu” CAR

The LIMITED & EXCLUSIVE Disney Blu-Ray “Blu” Dinoco McQueen

MORE INFORMATION THAN NORMAL

Of course, by now, you’ll want to know everything and plan your budget carefully … Mattel will definitely release 35/36 of the Piston Cup Racers in one massive collector’s set but will they release them in smaller sets? Our speculation on why rioting is probably not necessary:

Mattel Pixar Cars: All the Piston Cup CARS-Speedway of the South Box Set

Did you know the Blu-Ray DVD (for HDTV’s) will include a “name-spotter” feature that will let you see the names of 217 CARS within the movie?

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: It’s What to Collect-Part II – 217 CARS?

And while we’re at it – pure speculation on our part as to what might be coming next?

Mattel Pixar Cars: What’s Coming in 2008 or 2009

Mattel Pixar Cars: What’s Coming in 2008 or 2009? Part II

Mattel Pixar Cars: Mia & Tia – All the Possible Variants

MORE USEFUL INFORMATION

Details on the Mattel sponsorship & CARS charity auction for CAAF (Children Affected by AIDS Foundation):

Mattel Pixar Cars & Children Affected by AIDS Charity Auction

While Frank the Combine on eBay seems enticing, you might want to know that he’s very small and all plastic but there are some other options …

Mattel Pixar CARS Movie: Frank the Combine – eBay Warning

Too much money in your bank account – starting collecting the other CARS line …

NEW Mini Adventures CARS & Playsets

The Sarge Recall:

Mattel Recalls Pixar CARS Sarge Diecast Metal Car

Nothing very insightful about what’s coming but still good to know that CARS is bringing in money and everything is looking smooth.

Mattel Pixar Cars: 3rd Quarter 2007 Earnings-Financial Numbers

CARS 2, THE SEQUEL?

Yes, more speculation & answers on our part but the stars and other things seem to be syncing up for a 2011 sequel:

Pixar CARS 2 Sequel: Rumors, Rumors, Rumors

12 Comments

Filed under Computing, Film, Financial, Marketing, Media, Toys