Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Wheeling and Dealing

Wow, there has been so much news about the animated Astro Boy movie over the past few days, it has been difficult to keep up with it all. I'll try to consolidate the most important recent news-bites in this post.

At the American Film Market last week, Imagi had a screening of the trailer for the upcoming film for potential buyers and distributors in the industry. Imagi's own Felix Ip writes that the teaser trailer is attached to DreamWorks' "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa" and Disney's "Bolt", so it will be seen this month! The picture above is a huge promotional standee.

The Hollywood Reporter has an article about Imagi and Astro Boy at AFM. Check out "Imagi hopes to animate 'Astro' buyers". They also have a more general article about animated films at AFM. Check out "No shortage of animated product at AFM".

Next, we know that Summit Entertainment is releasing the Astro Boy film around the world except for in China, Hong Kong, and Japan. It has just been announced that the movie has been licensed to Golden Harvest in Hong Kong, Enlight Pictures in China, and Kadokawa in Japan. It is here that we learn that the budget for this movie has moved up from its previously announced $40 million range and is now pegged at $65 million! This news comes from Variety articles "Imagi sells 'Astro Boy' rights" and "Kadokawa nabs rights to 'Astro Boy'".

And finally for this post, several licensing and marketing deals have been announced. In addition to the previously disclosed toy deal with Jazwares and video game deal with D3Publisher, there will be stationary coming from American Greetings, books from Penguin, and comics and graphic novels from IDW! Woah!

As far as bringing all this stuff to us, Imagi has announced marketing partnerships with Striker Ent. and Rogers & Cowan. Looks like everyone worldwide can look forward to a wide array of Astro Boy products, with a focus on marketing to the 6 to 14 year old age group. Check out Imagi's press release (pdf) as well as this article from Animaton Magazine.

Long story short: There is a big-time marketing machine behind this movie,it's rolling right at us full steam ahead, and we're going to be getting a whole lot of cool stuff as a result!