Did you hear? Vikings took over Times Square!

23 Mar


True Story!

Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images North America

Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images North America

On my way into the office today, I made a stop in Times Square and found it overrun by Vikings!

This could sound a little scary- but they were all smiling, taking pictures and generally enjoying the fact that their 40 ft Viking Boat was grounded in the heart of NYC (Being a native New Yorker, I have to say it was grounded in the heart of America).

The celebration being held was for Dream Works’ new movieHow To Train Your Dragon

I could not help myself- I took a few pictures with these cheerful warriors and then listened to actress America Ferrera (Ugly Betty and the voice of Astrid) talk a little about the movie and its exclusive toy partnership with Walmart, both which launch across the country this Friday!

While there are a lot of great movies that come out every year, not all translate into merchandise (specifically toys) very well.

So how does America’s giant retailer decide when and how much muscle to put behind a new movie launch/property?

After having the pleasure of spending a few moments with Walmart’s SVP and General Manager of Entertainment, Gary Severson- I began to understand a little more what sets some movies apart from the rest when it comes to toy merchandising.

Children are going to undoubtedly love this movie and the story it tells about Hiccup, a Viking teenager who just doesn’t fit in and the dragon that challenges him and his fellow Vikings to look at the world differently.

Compound this sure-fire movie appeal with the years that Dragons have been a popular play pattern in the toy world (especially with boys) – it was clear to both Walmart and the first toy partner—Spin Master— that this had great potential to be something big.

Available exclusively at Walmart,  there will be a vast array of toys starting Friday- such as foam helmets and swords (of course!), snacks, apparel, and other products to keep the story alive.

We will also see the DVDs later in the year so be ready to add it to your holiday list! (Yes, its March– and I said Holiday!)

Now the real question is which item(s) will be on your little Viking Warrior’s list?


3 Responses to “Did you hear? Vikings took over Times Square!”

  1. Top Lyrics March 24, 2010 at 8:38 am #

    Hey this is a great post. I’m going to email this to my friends. I stumbled on this while googling for some songs, I’ll be sure to come back. thanks for sharing.

  2. Lisa Hernandez March 28, 2010 at 11:48 pm #

    I’m actually heading to Wal-Mart right now!! LOL!

  3. Tim Kimball March 29, 2010 at 12:02 am #

    I love to shop at Target and Wal-mart, but I feel Wal-Mart just has a better selection of everything!

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