Earlier today came the startling announcement that Saban had terminated its partnership with Bandai, the company that has produced ‘Power Rangers’ toys since the first U.S. iteration in 1993, for every season of the show and each movie including last year’s attempted reboot. The Bandai deal will end in 2019, allowing the toy company to continue producing playthings through the series 25th anniversary. The big question arose as to which lucky company would inherit the licensing juggernaut. Now the answer has arrived– toy titan Hasbro.
Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner announced:
“We’re particularly excited to partner together to help reignite and drive this brand for the next 25 years and more. It’s a partnership that is very collaborative and feels very good to us to be in business with Saban and to help power Power Rangers.”
It should be noted that Goldner was previously President of Bandai Namco America for three years, starting in 1997. Haim Saban discussed his many-years-long friendship with Goldner, saying:
“Our friendship started, as a matter of fact, when Brian left the advertising agency he worked at and moved to Bandai, which had the license at the time. Since then, we’ve been in touch on and off, on different subject matters. From time to time, Brian would say to me, ‘So when are you coming to Hasbro?’ [Laughs] This is just the culmination of events that have been happening for some time. We’re just beyond thrilled.”
Habsro is already the home of another giant mecha brand, ‘Transformers’. Their decades’ worth of experience with that brand should make them perfect to tackle a new generation of Zords. And it seems that is Saban’s focus, as the recent disappointment of the big budget Lionsgate movie and weaker-than-normal ratings for the show’s latest season ‘Ninja Super Steel’ seem to indicate that the older fans who grew up with the brand are starting to move on from it. (It took 25 years, so that’s nothing to be ashamed of.) Hasbro will be bringing on more creators and establishing a team specifically dedicated to the ‘Power Rangers’ line, with a keen eye on attracting youngsters. But die-hards are not being forgotten.
“We’re particularly excited to introduce the brand to the youngest Power Rangers fans, but we’ve also talked for many years about the growth and development of the fan economy. We do believe that fans today have more interest in, and more access to, fan-oriented products. The online retailing world allows us to retail products at higher price points, along with conventions, to move product that are aimed at older fans. You can only imagine with the amazing creativity of the Power Rangers show, as well as Haim’s own creativity, that this allows for some very exciting things as we move forward.”
Are you an old school ‘Power Rangers’ fan? How do you feel about the move to Hasbro?
Source: The Hollywood Reporter