AFI just received our latest batch of answers from Mattel’s monthly Q&A they are doing with some selected websites. Catching up on some housekeeping I thought I’d post the two latest rounds of Questions and Answers up on the News Page. If you have questions for Mattel be sure to ask them in this thread over on the message boards and we’ll try to include them in the next round of Mattel Q&A. You can also check out the answers that other sites have received and join in the discussion in this thread. You can check out AFHub.com’s latest batch of answers here.
Q&A from 12/15/07
Q1:Is there an estimated time line on when we might get some information on future of the JLU line? What new figures and were they can be purchased?
A:We will be announcing this in the February issue of Toy Fare magazine.
Q2: Regarding DCUC, will characters such as the flash and kid flash get extra articulation to get into their trademark running poses?
A; This is something we are looking into. Our designers and the Four Horsemen are always striving to bring the best quality figures for every single character.
Q3: When DCUC launches in January, will Big Lots continue to get new product like with the Cyborg Superman wave? I had never before or since found a wave of DCSH with such ease.
A: With a major DC movie next year(Batman the Dark Knight) a lot more retailers will be taking our DCUC line. This should make figures a lot easier to find. We are also looking into ways or re-releasing some harder to find figures such as Cyborg Superman, Batgirl and others.
Q4: Can you speak to this email that many JLU fans received from BigBadToyStore.com regarding their JLU pre–orders?
"RE:Justice League Figures – Assortment ‘999F’ Case
Hi – Mattel has informed us that due to high demand from Walmart,Target, and other big box stores, our order for the Justice Leaguefigures has gone unfilled – the inventory was sent to the national retailers instead. We are working with a new contact at Mattel who’s main job is to grow and satisfy the collector market – he has told me that they are going to try to work this figure into some 2008 product mixes made especially for the collector market. I just wanted to let you know that we are still working on getting these items, and we did not expect them to basically ignore our substantial order. It is unlikely this preorder will fill until sometime in 2008, so feel free to cancel your preorder if needed and I apologize for the supply problem. Mattel has been a bit difficult to deal with lately with their inventory policies, but they have assured me that things will improve in 2008."
A: Toy Guru has been working with both the sales department and directly with online retailers such as Big Bad Toy Store and Entertainment Earth to avoid situations like this in the future.
Q5:Are the Grodd 6-packs and the Fire, Ice and Mr. Miracle 3-packs still on target to hit before the new year?
A:Grodd should be out any day now. The 3 packs you mentioned will hit after the 1st of the year and will help fill in our Spring 08 line up. Look for more news in the Feb issue of Toy Fare magazine.
Questions from 1-15-08
Q1: Is Mattel considering a DC version of Hasbro’s 2" Marvel Super Hero Squad / Star Wars Galactic Heroes?
A: We’re always exploring new scales and styles and are looking forward to presenting some great new toys at Toy Fair in NY and at Comic Con later this year. We can’t reveal any new details quite yet, but there will be some neat surprises and fan requests in store for our DC brands.
Q2: I have a question regarding DCUC, I know that a release date of January 1st has been set in stone since these figures debuted in July, but with the Christmas season upon us I’ve been noticing that a lot of brick and mortar stores (not to mention online stores) have their fingers crossed for a mid-late December release. How likely is it that Mattel will meet this demand? And more importantly, have enough units been produced in order to meet the demand that comes with the holiday rush?
A:Our DCU brand was always meant to “street date” after the New Year. Demands are constantly coming in from retailers and we work with them and our production plants in Asia to meet the ever growing demand.
Q3: It has been mentioned that WM has decided to take a wait and see approach to carrying the DCUC line. Is this true? If so, does this create a potential set back for the re-branding/re-launch of a DC area on every retailers toy aisle? Not everyone has access to Target or TRU ( I have access to only one of each of those and they are out of the way and do not carry very much to begin with)and this seems to be a very negative strike for the line before it even hits the ground. What is your "planB" for this set back?? Will you make sure you provide the online retailers enough product to supply those hard luck cases unable to find your products at retail? Lots of folks will not even see your products in my area until WM gets on board.
A: Currently Wal-Mart has not placed orders for our DCUC figures. They are available for online and other new retailers to order. As always, if you are not seeing your favorite Mattel brand at your preferred retailers, you should contact them directly to let them know what brands you are interested in buying from them.
Q4: Reports are starting to surface about sightings of the long-awaited Mr. Miracle three-pack, which is great. What strikes some fans as "less great" is the fact that this item appears to be packed one-per-case, which means that Mr. Miracle will be just as hard to find as many of the new JLU figures that have appeared (then promptly disappeared) from shelves this year.
You have indicated that we would see more collector-friendly case-ratios. Can you comment on what Mattel is doing to make it easier for fans to actually purchase JLU figures, with regard specifically to the question of case-ratios?
A: Mr. Miracle (along with Fire and Ice and a new Ultra Humanite repack 3-pack) will be hitting shelves this Winter ‘07 and Spring ‘08. The case packs have all been remixed in a much more collector friendly way. (i.e. it will not be all Superman and Batman, but will be much heavier for the secondary characters collectors love). We are also mixing in other harder to find 07 products like the Deadshot 3-pack, Obsidian 3-pack and Blue Devil single figure. Hopefully by the end of Spring ’08 fans should be able to find all the missing pieces that were difficult to hunt for last year.
Q5: Point blank question: Is JLU Dead?
A: Point blank answer…far from it. Look for a major announcement about the future of the JLU line in ToyFare magazine this February.
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