PAWTUCKET, R.I.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Hasbro, Inc (NASDAQ:HAS), and Paramount Pictures, announced today that G.I. JOE: RETALIATION will now be released in 3D. The film, originally slated for release in June 2012, is scheduled to be released March 29, 2013.
“It is increasingly evident that 3D resonates with movie-goers globally and together with Paramount, we made the decision to bring fans an even more immersive entertainment experience,” said Brian Goldner, Hasbro’s President and CEO.
“In 2012, we continue to have several strong motion picture and television entertainment backed properties that are selling well at retail and our entertainment strategy remains strong and on-track,” Goldner said. “Through our own Hasbro Studios for television and in partnership with several movie studios including Paramount, Universal, Sony and Relativity, we are creating entertainment experiences around many of our highly popular iconic brands. For the full year 2012, we continue to believe, absent the impact of foreign exchange, we will again grow revenues and earnings per share.”
This was the press release put out by Hasbro, Inc yesterday announcing the retooling of the new film and the resultant delay of release. It should go without saying that fans are outraged; but who cares, right? It’s just a delay of release. We’ll still get to see the movie in less than a year. And it’ll be “better” with newly redesigned content to maximize the impact of the 3D release. Which – hey – I recently had my first 3D movie-going experience with the Marvel Movie Marathon and Avengers, and it was pretty decent. When done right, it can add some oomph, and that’s something a blockbuster action movie ought to have. So everybody wins, right?
Theoretically? Sure. Except there’s a reason production companies don’t release trailers a full year in advance of their film’s release: burnout. By the time GI Joe: Retaliation hits theaters, there is a better than average chance it will have lost some of the steam – some of the hype – it has going for it currently. Adrienne Palicki (at left, playing Lady Jaye) just graced the cover of Maxim with a full spread (ba-dum-tsh!) inside. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (above, playing Roadblock) headlined this year’s Wrestlemania. The original animated series just saw release on Netflix. Wheels are in motion to promote this big budget summer blockbuster, that now won’t come out until early next Spring. It’s a marketing fail worthy of ArbCo. Are we to assume that a similar push will accompany the film’s new release date? Between Hasbro and Paramount, their pockets run deep and their clout is significant, but with only two notable female leads, there are only so many Maxim covers left, and I don’t see The Rza popping up in next year’s Royal Rumble. But that’s just the ancillary promotions. What about the elephant in the room?
Hasbro has released to retail a full court press of Retaliation toys and tie-in merchandise. Retailers have committed to their orders and most have received their first wave of merch, at least. And it’s selling. Of course it’s selling. Collectors are ravenously snatching up Red Ninjas left and right. But this is a toy line based on a major motion picture and, as such, the toy line is designed with kids in mind. Collectors are significantly less likely to be purchasing the Snake Eyes roleplay kits and Roadblock Battle Kata Blasters, and kids aren’t going to know or care what “Battle Kata” even is if they haven’t seen the film. However, since stores can’t afford to simply sit on this product until next March, it WILL be put out for sale, rest assured. Will it sell? That’s another question entirely. And if it doesn’t, what then? Will we even see the later waves that Hasbro had slated for release throughout the summer? Will they be pushed back until the film’s release? Will retailers be gun shy ordering new product after the first few waves have sat on shelves at clearance prices all throughout the summer and fall? WILL I GET MY 3 3/4″ BRUCE WILLIS FIGURE!?!?!?
It’s sad to say, but Hasbro and Paramount may have just dealt a more crippling blow to GI Joe than Cobra Commander ever dreamed of.
So what do you think about this latest development, Joe fans? Will this plan backfire? Is 3D worth the wait? Leave a comment or contact me directly at email@example.com