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Author Topic: JTA - HASBRO STAR WARS Q&A ROUNDUP - WEEK OF JAN 30th, 2009  (Read 1919 times)
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« on: January 30, 2009, 10:11:46 PM »


Thanks for dropping by and checking out JTA's roundup of all of the Hasbro Q&A sessions from around the web.  This week's answers come in a little late as Hasbro has slid back the time to answer.  The roundup is continually updating as we get more and more responses posted at the participating websites.  If you know of a site that's participating in the Q&A's but isn't represented in our roundup, please drop us a line with a hyperlink to that site's Q&A.

You can check out each site's postings by clicking on the website title.  The Star Wars Q&A's are posted alphabetically, and are followed by any Indiana Jones Q&A's that the Hasbro Lucasfilm team has fielded.

Also be sure to check back as we distill the Q&A's down to the real nitty gritty with out Q&A Headlines.  That is where we give you real news that comes out of the Q&A:  newly confirmed items, assortments, exclusive details, etc.  And feel free to post about what Hasbro is saying in the Q&A process here in the Jedi Temple War Room.

That being said, let's start of at home:


QUESTION:  We've known about the complete lineup for the upcoming EMPIRE STRIKES BACK wave since early November.  But thus far the only images we've seen have been what appears to be a Captain Needa prototype.  Can we get a peek at some of the offerings in this wave?  Perhaps a final version of the previously seen Needa, or perhaps even the eagerly anticipated Hoth Rebel Trooper?

ANSWER:  Images have been released this week already, and additional images will be made available at Toy Fair.

QUESTION:  The Q&A process seems to have been dominated with questions about the LEGACY line much more than the CLONE WARS line.  Which is interesting, since it seems that during the holiday shopping season it was much harder to come by CLONE WARS figures than LEGACY figures.  So with that in mind, we thought that CLONE WARS might be fertile ground for a Q&A session.  Has the sales performance of the CLONE WARS line been as much of a surprise to the Hasbro Star Wars team as it has been to collectors?

And on a related note, we've seen indications over the past few months that a CLONE WARS deluxe figure line is in the works.  We've also seen word that a CLONE WARS Jabba might be on the way.  Will Jabba be offered through this line?  And what about the crab droid that we saw in the "Bombad Jedi" episode?

ANSWER:  We are not surprised in the least at the runaway success of Clone Wars (both the series and the figures).  When we started seeing episodes, we knew it was going to rock the kid world, and have been planning big ever sense.  Collector questions on the Q&A are starting to turn more and more to Clone Wars, which is a sign that the "wait and see" attitude that a lot of collectors have had seems to be turning toward anticipation and excitement for future releases. We are glad to see the line getting the all-around respect that we feel it deserves.  as for Jabba - yes, he is coming in the Battle Pack lineup.  As for other segments of the Clone Wars line, stay tuned for news out of Toy Fair in a few weeks.

QUESTION:  The news of the 2010 Force Unleashed wave is very exciting indeed.  With that news come all sorts of questions.  First, will the TFU Shaak Ti that we've heard about move to this wave from the previously announced Expanded Universe wave?  And what characters from the Force Unleashed are on the Star Wars team's wishlists?

ANSWER:  Shaak Ti will stay in her wave, which is the EU wave slotted in prior to the TFU wave.  There are a bunch of figures on our wish list, which is now moving into the sculpting stage, but we're going to keep the exact contents of this wave close to the vest.  We have to have *something* to talk about in Spring 2010!

And now to continue through the collecting community:


QUESTION:  8d8 from Jabba’s palace shares a body with BGJ-38. Any chance these two will make it into the build-a-droid line?

ANSWER:  BG-J38 *will* be coming as a buildable droid Factory figure in early 2010.

QUESTION:  Will you release a new Bantha with less curly hair and > more straight hair this time like it was in the movie? Or how about some more beasts? It’s been a while!

ANSWER:  There are no plans right now to release a new Bantha, although there are a couple new beasts on the way. More information will likely be released at Comic Con, so stay tuned…

QUESTION:  Any chance we'll see the Tatooine hut from the Lars Homestead available in a pack with no or just one figure, in a closed box someday? I would gladly buy 4 of them if they were in a better package at a better price point.

ANSWER:  We're glad you like it; we agree it's a cool piece. However, we do not have plans to release the hut anywhere outside the Lars Homestead set itself.


QUESTION:  It's been a while since we've seen Hasbro visit Jabba's dungeons. Even if none of these are in the works for '09, are any on the short list for a future ROTJ wave? BG-J38, 2-1A with torture rack (we know it's not his official name, but it's fan name of the 2-1B body droid without the mouth), a tortured Gonk droid, perhaps even upgrades for 8D8 and EV-9D9... what are the chances we'll see stuff like that in the moderate future?

ANSWER:  At least one of these droids will be updated in 2009, but there are no plans right now to pursue the others. With one of our long-term focuses (focii?) to ensure that we get around to a lot of the denizens of Jabba's Palace, both organic and inorganic, we think that given time all or almost all these droids will find their way into the lineup.

QUESTION:  Back on Aug 17th, '07, Hasbro answered's question about the Skiff Guards with "over the next few years you will see some more of these cool guards either get their turn for the first time or get a resculpt. You'll have to be patient though - we'll only be able to get to a couple new ones a year." 17 months later and 2008 closes without a new sculpt for any Skiff Guard, making it 10 years since the last ones. While you have confirmed 1 Nikto guard is slated for next year, do Skiff Guard fans have anything else to look forward to in 2009, as there have not yet been a "couple new ones" in '08 and so far only 1 new one in '09? Or does the patience need to be extended to 2010?

ANSWER:  This is the danger of answering specific questions in the Q&A, and opening a window into our longer-term plans. We did not have any of these guys in the '08 plans, but have slotted two into the '09 and one more into the '10 basic figure lineups.

QUESTION:  Back in October '08, you answered a question about the potential for 4 Jabba's Palace characters - Cane Adiss, Loje Nella, Geezum and Yoxgit - by saying that "long term we do plan to get to some of these guys." If you only plan on doing some of these, which one or ones do you NOT plan on doing? Are there other Jabba's Palace denizens that Hasbro has no interest in pursuing, and why?

ANSWER:  None of these are really *too* funky to do someday, although there are some strange ones there. To this point none of these have been slotted into any lineup. Geezum does make the most sense since he's a skiff guard. As far as which denizens we are not likely to do, the simple answer is that there are so many populating the palace that we just can't do them all and will need to select priorities first, which would include upgrades to major characters and species (such as Malakili or Gammorean Guards), Skiff guards, and the various dungeon droids - similar to the vintage Kenner focus. We do hope to do others over time, but our ability to really do a lot of these long-term depends on how many new figures we can produce, and continued sustained interest by collectors in the broader Star Wars line.


QUESTION:  In light of the new Astromechs we have seen in the new Clone Wars series so far:

1) R7-A7
2) R6-H5
3 & 4) Both Plo Koon’s Astromechs
5) Green R5 (from promo clip)
6 & 7) Ziro the Hutt’s Astromechs (2)
8) Copper/Gold R2-from the 1st episode
9) White/Gray R4-from the 1st episode
10) Red/white R5 (with side blasters)-from the 1st episode
11) Orange/gray R2-from the Hangar
12) Blue/Red R2 (similar to ARC Battlepack, but different) from the hangar
13) Backround blue R2-from the hangar
Here is a suggestion for release:
Single carded:

Green R5
Remaining 10 in two 5-pack exclusives
ANSWER:  Hi there - thanks for the rundown.  That is a far more detailed list than we have been keeping ourselves regarding the Clone Wars droids.  Our focus isn't on producing so many droids models for Clone Wars.  We have our hands full chasing the main characters, key Jedi, clones, main Separatists, and different battle droid species that round out the main focus of what kids are looking for. Given time, we think that we will fill in the seems with some interesting characters, but with the pace of the episodes, and the constantly changing story focus, we envision fewer background characters in the lineup compared to, say, the Original Trilogy.

QUESTION:  Okay, so you’ve made it clear that there will be no crossover between the “realistic” sculpts of the Legacy Collection and the “animated” sculpts of The Clone Wars lines, which suits a customizer like me down to the ground. At least I know what I can customize without fear of being upstaged by an Official Hasbro Product down the line.  But can I just plead the case that regarding the Clones, simple repaints could easily make “realistic” versions of the new Clones, perhaps as online exclusive sets?  For example, a set for “personalities” like Rex, Fox, and the like, or themed packs, like the Walker-Pilot Clones with the AT-TE foot insignia on their deltoid armor?
ANSWER:  There are no plans to cross the two lines over; to start with a few clones would just open the door to the inevitable, and that would be a decreased focus on new Legacy figures or new Clone Wars figures as we start to cross-over characters in each unique style.  Instead, we have chosen to keep the lines separate to best craft the strongest lineups for each.     

QUESTION:  Do you feel there are some figures which are the best there are, and the best that will ever be, and producing new sculpts would be fruitless?
ANSWER:  We do think that some figures are about as solid as we are ever going to get them.  Case in point, the current EpIV Obi-Wan about to release.  Originally planned for an Evolution pack but released as a single basic carded figure instead, this figure is about as great a classic Obi-Wan as we could have hoped for.  With the advances in articulation, sculpting aesthetics, and soft goods there are a large number of figures in this category, usually most of the characters in a given new wave any more.  We're always curious as to which figures fans believe are still wanting, and we pay attention to those as future possibilities for upgrades.   

To be continued.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2009, 05:41:56 PM by Gold 5 » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2009, 10:25:43 PM »



QUESTION:  Fans love Aayla Secura, so might we expect another new figure eventually? Maybe a Comic 2-Pack version of her in her undercover outfit as "Jayzaa" from the storyline in Darkhorse comics Republic #72 issue.

ANSWER:  There are certainly a couple cool versions of Aayla in the comics, and we have some good ones sitting in the "parking lot." One of them just missed the cut for the mainline lineup in 2010, but could find its way to an exclusive. We are confident that given time, and continued support for the comic packs, we will see some more of Aayla one of these days.

QUESTION:  You've said that there probably won't be a second Padmé Evolution set in 2009 [or any as of this e-mail], but can we still expect at least one more non-animated realistic Padmé next year in addition to the animated Padmé in her white outfit that has already been revealed? Also on the subject of animated Padmé, is there a good chance of eventually getting Padmé in her Leia-esque battle uniform from the 4th episode of the series Clone Wars: Destroy Malevolence plot? It seems to be prominently featured on various Clone Wars books and advertising, so it deserves as much attention as the standard white bodysuit version you are already releasing.

ANSWER:  Shabby Blue - this is your lucky day. We can confirm that there will indeed be a new Queen Amidala figure in the Episode I wave this year.  As for Clone Wars Padmé, we will be releasing her in her "adventure" gear. Stay tuned!

QUESTION:  Two figures that haven't received the newer, fresher Hasbro update are Oola and the Gammorean Guard. We've heard that both have been at some phase of development, but how likely are we to see them in the near future? (Or how close are they to getting out of the "parking lot"?)

ANSWER:  Oola is not in the works to be updated, but we think she is almost a certainty as the farther-but years unfold. She has been on several lists, but has been one of the last cuts each time. The Gammorean Guard will be updated within the next two years.


QUESTION:  A question on the upcoming Clone Wars Jabba the Hutt Battle Pack - dais or no dais? And does he come with any new figures or just some sort of inevitable Anakin/Dooku/Ahsoka repacks that we're all expecting?

ANSWER:  There is no dais with Jabba. He will come with his protocol droid, but no other figures.
[editor's note: Yeah, I know - old news. This is why Q&A delays suck.]

QUESTION:  Based on what you told us last time, we won't hold our breath waiting for our Han Solo with yellow space goggles from Marvel Star Wars # 15 (though we all know it'd rock). As Han Solo fans, what should we hold our breath waiting for in the coming year? With no new Bespin Han planned until 2010 and a new Carbonite Han not in our immediate future, is Stormtrooper Han really the only new Han figure we'll see in 2009?

ANSWER:  There will be on additional version of Han later this year in the EpIV basic figure wave. After that, the next one up will be in later 2010.

QUESTION:  And finally a question submitted by one of our younger readers - "Will you make some Wookiees in the Clone Wars Animated toys?" Joe, Age 7

ANSWER:  Joe, Right now, Wookies do not appear in the animated series, so we would not want to put them into the toy line because we want the toys to match what kids are seeing on TV. However, if Wookies do start to show up in the TV show we think it would be a great idea to include some in the toy line. Thanks!


QUESTION:  Do you have any plans to release the Separatist Boarding Craft aka Pod Hunter in the Clone Wars 3D vehicle  line?

ANSWER:  No plans for that one right now.

QUESTION:  I would like to know if there are any OTC ships (especially TESB) planned for Legacy this coming year?

ANSWER:  There are no new brand-new OTC ships scheduled for '09, but there are going to be some dynamite exclusive versions of classic vehicles if the schedules hold.  We'll have more information on those at Comic Con.

QUESTION:  Do you have any plans to release the Firefighter Battle Droid from the Destroy Malevolence episode of Clone Wars in the Clone Wars  3D line?

ANSWER:  Yes indeed he will be coming, but likely not before the end of this year.


QUESTION:  I really like both the McQuarrie Star Wars figures that you made and I was wondering if you ever thought of doing a series of McQuarrie Evolutions Packs? They would be just like the 3 figure packs you already make, but they would have two figures that show the Evolution from McQuarrie's concept artwork to the final movie version. Like one could be a McQuarrie Evolutions Pack of Darth Vader (McQuarrie & Movie figures).

ANSWER:  We don't have any plans to return to the Evolution format, at least for now. If we did, it's unlikely that we would put the McQuarrie figures into the mix with actual movie characters unless there was a broader theme to the set like "From concept to screen." That is a bit of a different theme than most everything else we have done, as we prefer to work "in fantasy" whenever possible. If we do pursue more McQuarrie or other concept figures beyond the four slotted for 2009, we'd most likely do them as basic carded figures. It's possible down the road that we will re-release the McQuarrie TAC figures in multi-figure sets. Look for an announcement on that later in 2009.

QUESTION:  There's no doubting the popularity of the ‘Legacy’ comics from Dark Horse and their plastic counterparts, collectors and kiddies seem to be picking up the recent Cade/Talon and Imperial Knights packs left and right. While you've discussed future EU releases before, any indication how we may be getting these figures? Will we be seeing more comic pack issues or will figures such as Darth Krayt and Nihl begin sneaking their way into the single card assortments? The Legacy series itself presents a great opportunity for two packs; the aforementioned Sith Lords, Wolf Sazen with Shado Vao or even an Emperor Fel with a newly sculpted Marasiah Fel head on an Imperial Knight body are all great possibilities. So are comic packs the way to go to get great EU characters to the fans quickly and in quantity or will we see them gradually fill in the spots in the basic assortments?

ANSWER:  We're concentrating on delivering Legacy figures in the comic pack format, and do not have plans to introduce them on basic figure cards. Many of the figures you cited will be coming within the next couple of years. Stay tuned!

QUESTION:  The articulation on the new Marvel Universe 3 3/4" figures seems to be pretty nice, any chance of testing out this style with Star Wars figures in the future?

ANSWER:  We have no plans of changing the Star Wars aesthetic, which relies on a seamless marriage of sculpting and articulation. Other figure lines make different choices that are best for their needs, but we have been following the current (and highly successful) path for some time and plan to stay on course.

To be continued.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2009, 05:28:34 PM by Gold 5 » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2009, 01:27:07 AM »



QUESTION:  In the US release for TLC wave 4, the BAD parts are with all the new figures, and the 327th Clone Trooper - which is merely a repaint of the Evolutions Clone Trooper - comes with a redundant BAD part since he's not exactly "new" enough to warrant making collectors buy him again just to build the droid. However, in the UK release of this wave, the 327th Clone comes with an original BAD part - the right arm - while new figure Bail Organa is the one with the redundant part. Why did Hasbro change the BAD parts in wave 4 in the UK, leaving a new figure with a duplicate unnecessary part and an old figure with a vital part... or could this be factory error?

ANSWER:  We did not change the recipe for wave construction in the U.K., as far as we know.  The assortment ratios and part assignments should have been exactly the same.  As the new figures in the wave were Commander Faie, General Grievous, King and Queen Organa, FX-6, and Stass Allie, getting those six should have netted the complete droid.  It's possible you have seen a factory error, and if so, we do not know how widespread it is.

QUESTION:  Some of the Galactic Heroes Cinema Scenes and 2008 Comic Packs have been not been seen in the UK.  Will any effort be made over the coming weeks and months to try to ensure we have a chance to buy some of these items (only 4 of the recently released GH Cinema Scene's were officially available over here [Vader's TIE, Obi Wan's Starfighter, Rancor's Pit and AT-RT] meaning that we're missing out on X-Wing Fighter on Dagobah, Pit of Carkoon, Escape from Mos Eisley and Geonosis Battle)?

ANSWER:  We are doing our best to ensure that all toys see distribution in the UK, but that does not always mean that we have enough consumer support to get all toys in all of our assortments to retail.  In this case, we are struggling with both of these to make the release quantities for all items, so we have to pick and choose.  With time we hope to grow the market, but for now it's the best start we can get with these assortments.

This next question was sent before the UK Toy Fair that took place this week - you can read our report from the Hasbro stand tomorrow and find out exactly what we did see and can say!

QUESTION:  As normal the UK Toy Fair precedes the US Toy Fair by about 2/3 weeks.  Last year, a movie year, we weren't allowed to see ANYTHING related to Star Wars on the Hasbro stand.  Will we be able to see anything new at the UK Toy Fair this year or will everything be held back for the US? ...please say we'll be able to see something - fingers crossed!

ANSWER:  You will indeed be able to see quite a number of new things at the UK Toy Fair, but whether you will be able to actually talk about them is a different matter!  Seriously, there should be some good news there, but the rules about what can and can't be shared publicly until NY Toy Fair will be discussed by the UK team upfront.


QUESTION:  Our first question/comment comes from some forum discussion regarding the recent Previews Exclusive Crimson Empire: The Crucible figure set. The set is a cool idea because Crimson Empire is really a popular storyline it seems, but some of our readers have expressed concern/disappointment in some parts used to make the Royal Guard Trainees... In particular, there were complaints about the use of the "Training Fatigues Clone" legs, as the ankles aren't articulated and they are sculpted at sharp angles. Was there a reason these legs were used over other more poseable legs? The lack of ankle articulation is pretty detrimental to posing these figures, mostly due to the way the ankles are sculpted in such an extreme stance. The Crimson Empire storyline's a very cool EU subject to go with it seems, but there does seem to be some disappointment in the poseability of the 4 trainee figures in the set just due to the leg choice.

ANSWER:  The choice was based on the best fit and available tooling. For this one, we had to start with an existing torso since the arms, heads, helmets, and weapons were al new, and we thought it was the best match and the tools were not in use elsewhere. We're glad you like the concept of the set; we think the Royal Guards story is an exceptional piece of EU storytelling and we're glad we could bring this one out.

QUESTION:  In case we missed it, what happened to the R2-D2 that was going to utilize the R4-G9 body that was supposed to come out this year as part of a set? If it was scrapped, when can we expect to finally get our ultimate clean R2-D2 that doesn't utilize the inferior Early Bird body? Fans are pretty anxious to get an R2-D2 figure based on that R4-G9 sculpt since it's so awesome!

ANSWER:  Actually the set that was to have used this version of R2-D2 had to be dropped. We know that's a great version of R2-D2 to do, and will find a way to bring him out, probably in 2010.

QUESTION:  Wilrow Hood got yet another mention in another Q&A from you guys recently, and we've got to ask it... Is there any chance you can give us some kind of update on Wilrow? Like perhaps could you share maybe some concept/design art for him, or where he is at in the production process so far? We'd love to see something here at Jedi Defender where the ICMG movement began.

ANSWER:  He will probably be on-shelf around November at this point, as part of the second EpV wave. At this point we have input drawings only for him. We are pleased to give you a first look at the input for Willrow.



QUESTION:  Would Hasbro ever consider doing large-scale versions of some of the smaller figures? I don't mean 12" bodies with cloth costumes, like Sideshow does and Hasbro used to do, but literal larger versions of some of the best figures. 4-ups, let's say.

ANSWER:  It's highly unlikely at this point. We discontinued the Unleashed 8" format for the reason that the line only attracted a small following despite extraordinary production costs in terms of time and tooling. Any other collector-targeted size or format that we pursued would likely also attract a niche audience or take away focus on growing the primary 3-3/4" play pattern and other popular expressions we have in motion such as Star Wars Transformers and Galactic Heroes. We will continue working with Sideshow on their 12" figure program.

QUESTION:  Will we see a figure of the Clone Wars Mon Calamari Jedi, Nahdarr Vebb?

ANSWER:  There is no Nahdarr Vebb figure planned.

QUESTION:  Would Hasbro consider doing Star Wars-themed fashion dolls again? Especially now with more female characters to choose from in Clone Wars, it could be a broader line than just Leia and Padme.

ANSWER:  We would not consider pursuing fashion dolls again. The primary audience for Clone Wars remains boys and (secondarily) their dads.


QUESTION:  With all the attention being paid to the EU with The Clone Wars (although one COULD argue that TCW is not really EU) and the Comic Packs, and all of the attention being paid to the Prequel Trilogy this year, can you reassure fans of the Original Trilogy that they have not been forgotten? I know there are several waves dedicated to the OT coming in 2009, but OT fans can't help but feel left out in the cold, what with the OT waves getting pushed back farther and farther away (2008's TESB wave), or seemingly abandoned (Whatever happened to Willrow Hood?). Say it ain't so!

ANSWER:  While 2008 was light for basic figures, there was plenty of reason to celebrate the OTC with the Millennium Falcon, some cool battle packs, buildable Droid Factory figures, and several exclusives including a revamped A-Wing and both a Lars Homestead and Sarlacc Pit (we never dreamed that we could deliver both of those, but were able to do it). So if pure-OTC fans thought we neglected them last year we really beg to differ!

Anyway, since the focus seems to be keenly on basic figures, we believe OTC fans will have a fantastic year in 2009. There will be five new waves (if we count the EpIV wave which is shipping now) along with some very special non-basic figure announcements which will come later in the year that will make this a year to remember. Willrow is slotted for the second ESB wave for late 2009.

QUESTION:  On the other hand, from a fan of the EU...the Dark Horse comic book Jedi characters are very popular with fans. It's great to see Sharad Hett, K'Kruhk, Ki-Adi-Mundi What are the chances we'll see action figures based on T'ra Saa, Badoo Bok, a REAL Jedi Quinlan Vos, or my personal favorite....Tyvokka the Wookiee?

ANSWER:  We agree - the Dark Horse run of Republic was an amazingly fertile ground for key character introduction and storytelling, and if fans haven't sought out this series they really ought to (available in trade paperback under the Clone Wars reprint volumes). We will be exploring a good number of characters from this series over the next couple of years, including T'ra Saa and others.

We just released a Jedi-robe version of Quinlan Vos, so look for him now packed out with the Scout Trooper version of Commander Faie (unless we misunderstood your point about a REAL Jedi Quinlan Vos?).

We are not sure who Badoo Bok is as we are not tracking him in our parking lot, unless you are referring to Bok the Morgukai warrior, who is indeed AWESOME but not in the lineup yet (hopefully, some day).

As for Tyvokka, he remains one of the figures that is off limits to us and will not be produced.

Dan's Note: A bit of a private joke here...Badoo Bok is a fan-fiction Rodian Jedi Knight, so that of course wouldn't get past Lucasfilm's scrutiny. But an upgraded version of the figure from the Jedi Knight Army set WOULD be cool, wouldn't it?

QUESTION:  It's already been revealed that there will be a Podracer pilot in the Episode I wave in 2009. Will this be a 2-pack, or will we see a single figure release?

ANSWER:  It will be a single figure release. We would like to be able to do multi-figure packs, but it all comes down to what we can manage to get into the lineup based on costing, etc.

QUESTION:  Since this is the 66th Q&A, we gotta ask a clone question (hello? Order 66!)....How soon if at all can we expect an upgrade for Bacara and Cody, after what you did with Gree I'd really like to see these two Commanders get theirs, they are the only two left from ROTS that need to be updated.

Dan's Note: I tried to sneak this 4th question in, but they were wise to me...

To be continued.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2009, 05:29:26 PM by Gold 5 » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2009, 02:08:13 PM »



QUESTION:  Is it possible to you confirm what figures you have made for the live action TV series for next year if any? If so what?

ANSWER:  There is no word on the live action TV series as of yet.

QUESTION:  This coming wave of New Hope figures have given us, the fans, 4 more Mos Eisley/Cantina aliens, and Kudos to you because I always wondered what Dice Ibegon would look like with a body. We have Trinto, Dice, Pons (Brainiac) and Wioslea, but we are missing ONE last crucial alien for the cantina. I am of course referring to BOM VIMDIM. Wheres the figure love for are favorite horned patron?

ANSWER:  There are a couple more significant Cantina aliens coming this Fall, but Bom won't be among them.  Right now, we think you can look for him near the end of 2010 as long as things stay on schedule.

QUESTION:  I'm just wondering if you plan on giving any consideration to expanded universe material from the pre-Thrawn trilogy era (70's & 80's) apart from the Marvel comics material. There is actually quite a bit to draw from such as the Holiday Special (which you have stated can't be touched), the Ewok movies, the Droids and Ewoks cartoons, novels such as Splinter of the Mind's Eye, the Han and Lando novels, and storybooks that originally included records like Planet of the Hoojibs and Droidworld. True, none of them have a lot of exposure today, but they would certainly be remembered by collectors that grew up in a time when these were some of the only sources of Star Wars fun apart from the OT.  So what do you think? Is there any chance that figures based on some of these sources could ever be made, perhaps as chase figures, exclusives or some other type of release?

ANSWER:  There is simply so much great Star Wars reference that we can't cover it all, so we try and hone in on the things that have the most pent-up-demand, or things which we feel tell a great story and can be executed within our tooling and cost constraints. Some of these - like the Ewoks and Droid series, which have seen DVD distribution - are definitely possible if we find the right format. This would most likely be as exclusive multi-figure packs.  They are not high on our list given some of our other choices but remain possibilities as we look to flesh out our plans farther down the road.  Splinter of the Minds Eye is likely in comic 2-pack form and was high on the list for 2010, but did not make the final cut.  It is a strong possibility for 2011 if comic packs are still doing well. The rest of the sources you cite have much lower resonance and would not be under consideration.


QUESTION:  2008 marked the 25th anniversary of ROTJ, however there was no fanfare, no commemorative figure sets, no special packaging, nothing from Hasbro mentioning the milestone. Is there a reason it got snubbed while ANH has enjoyed Hasbro products for both its 25th and 30th anniversary? Will 2009 pass without anything celebratory of the TPM 10th anniversary? What about ESB's 30th anniversary the year after? Judging by some of your Q&A answers over the last 6 months, it seems like there's thinking about maybe doing some cool ESB stuff in 2010 - like a Tauntaun, e-web cannon, Bespin Han, and Boba Fett - are those hints suggesting ESB 30th anniversary special stuff?

ANSWER:  2008 was the year of Clone Wars and our focus was geared toward that as the big new story, with a portion of the very big spotlight being shared with the Millennium Falcon launch. The main story for both 2009 and 2010 will be the second and third seasons of Clone Wars, respectively, but it does not mean that the spotlight can't be shared to some extent. In 2009, there will be a celebration of the 10th Anniversary of EpI, small but significant, and details for that should be released at Toy Fair. For 2010, we are still looking at whether there is a program for the 30th Anniversary of EpV, but nothing is concrete right now.

QUESTION:  Longterm collectors have noticed that, in the past, sometimes Hasbro ends up with spare figures at the end of a particular line - either unsold merchandise or even bought back from retailers like in the Saga line. Take for example the HasbroToyShop 8-packs of TAC Farmboy Luke, or Darth Vader, sold as "party favors". Collectors have always wondered, what happens to those extra figures: Are they melted down and recycled back into plastic (and wouldn't their paint make that difficult)? Are they repacked into new sets like battle packs or Saga Legends (which seems expensive to take them out of original packaging and put into a different package)? Are they sold off to toy liquidators, or donated to childrens' charity as a write-off?

ANSWER:  This is an interesting question, and one we're glad you asked since we have seen some speculation that our Battle Pack or figure choices are dictated by leftover or excess (or, as implied, returned/unwanted) inventory. This could not be further from the truth; we select figures and sets based on the anticipated wants of the groups we are targeting, and match our existing library to those needs. Some Battle Packs may rely on older figures, but if they are kid-targeted (as many Battle Packs are) then many of our older figures are perfect for the audience. We have not brought figures back from retail in many years, but if we did, they would not be repacked into new sets like Battle Packs or Saga Legends. Production of all new toys takes place in Asia, and it doesn't make logistic sense to ship them back for reworking when it would be much less expensive to initiate new production. As for what has happened to figures in the past, it is likely that a variety of options were pursued to move the inventory, including the figure 4-packs that were sold to retailers in the past.

QUESTION:  Fans may be a mixed bunch, but when it comes to the latest Sarlacc Ultimate Battle Pack exclusive for Target, while fans were really looking forward to this concept, their overall take on the finished product seems to be a less-than-positive one. The complaints range from weak execution on the set to poor paint on the figures to not enough product for the newly-increased pricepoint over the '07 models. What is the Hasbro Star Wars team's take on the final product that made it to retail, both its successes and its failures?

ANSWER:  Good question. We understand that not everyone was satisfied with the pricing and execution of the set, and, as with everything, it is up to the individual fan to decide whether the materials and execution are up to their own individuals standards. Not everything always turns out exactly the way we want it, either; we do the best we can within our parameters for costing and what we can afford to produce. We are proud that we do take chances on things that otherwise we would never be able to do, and both the 2007 Ultimate Battle Packs and the 2008 versions are examples of such chances. Pretty much every choice we make is a compromise of some sort, with our strategic objectives always in mind. In this case, it was delivering a set that could retail for the same price as the 2007 Ultimate Battle Packs (actual retail pricing is out of our control). We are thrilled to have delivered a Sarlacc pit to fans, and we put in as much value as we could into the set, including the skiff, as many figures as we could, and the newly tooled parts that offered both versions of the Pit itself. While the larger base was vacu-formed, the set would not have been possible without this approach, and really is the key factor that ensured that the set existed in the first place. We worked hard to get this one out with as many components as we could, and are proud of the results, and hope that many fans share the same enthusiasm toward getting a Sarlacc Pit that otherwise could not exist.


QUESTION:  In a previous Q&A you said the Republic Commando in the upcoming Evolutions set would feature new knee and ankle articulation, and that you did not change the upper body. When you said that you did not change the upper body, did you mean that you did not make the helmet removable and the backpack will be one we have seen before? At this time, can you release information on the other figures in this pack?
ANSWER:  The other figures are Alpha-17 (aka Alpha) in red armor and an Imperial Shadow Commando.  We did not modify the torso or head for this set, instead using the existing upper torso. 

QUESTION:  Overall reaction from our listeners to Hasbro's Ultra Battle Backs in 08 has been overwhelmingly negative, with complaints ranging from too expensive to the bases being too flimsy and ready to crack to the unimpressive figures chosen (POTF2 Beru and Owen Lars) to the paint apps (especially on the ROTJ Sarlaac pit set). What feedback have you gotten on these packs, and how will that feedback influence any possible '09 releases?

ANSWER:  Extreme costing challenges impacted the contents and the price we could deliver the sets at for 2008 and we packed them with as much content as we could.  Even though the Clone Wars set was wildly successful, we do not have plans to go back to the format for '09 or beyond given the costing challenges.   

QUESTION:  It's been a few years since we saw a figure carrying case released and decades since one that doubled as a cool toy was made in the SW line (the Rebel Transport of the Kenner line being the only one that comes to mind). This might be a good way to get some more big vehicles made that otherwise wouldn't get a chance to be produced, like the AT-OT Clone Transporter, Turbotank, MTT Droid Carrier or even Jabba's Sail Barge. Is a carry case a realistic prospect in the years ahead, perhaps with some limited play features, like an opening cockpit or one or two articulated elements, or a handle that folds out so as not to disrupt the aesthetics of the vehicle too drastically?
ANSWER:  A new carrying case like you suggest would not be a focus, given the high productivity needs of retail shelf space and the extreme cost that such a large case would bring.  If we do focus on bringing out a case, it would be bringing back the Vader case, since that is super iconic and does its job well.       


QUESTION:  If Evolutions are going away, what's the chance of seeing a return to deluxe or Ultra figures?

ANSWER:  We will have an announcement at Toy Fair regarding the return of "Deluxe" aligned to the Clone Wars series.  There will be no Deluxe-type offering for the Legacy collection.

QUESTION:  I was disappointed to see that the upcoming Dark Empire Luke has this extremely wide leg pose (which severely limits posability and prevents him from easily sitting in vehicles). I do however love the sculpt and would be happy to own this figure if a more neutrally-posed version is released. At some future date, would Hasbro consider kitbashing him with more neutral limbs and add a softgoods cloak?  It'd be great to see a Dark Empire Luke released in one of the EU slots on basic card.

ANSWER:  We are very unlikely to do another version of this figure any time soon. It would be a great candidate for release on a basic figure card someday, but we'd likely repack the comic version.

QUESTION:  Since you're pumping out all those ARC Troopers there is one left to do who would be very cool IMO, Alpha-66 (Muzzle) from the Aurodium Sword Mercenary group, any plans to release a figure of this guy?

ANSWER:  There are no plans right now, but thanks for reminding us of that Underworld article.  Definitely a great read.

To be continued.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2009, 05:34:24 PM by Gold 5 » Logged

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Gold 5
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« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2009, 06:48:51 PM »



QUESTION:  So far we have seen numerous Rebel Pilot figures but we have yet to see one of the Grey Squadron Y-Wing Pilots from ROTJ. Is there any chance we may see one of these in 2009 or 2010?

ANSWER:  There are no plans right now, but we are very interested in continuing to explore the Rebel Pilots and would not rule it out for sometime down the road.

QUESTION:  You have released details for the 2nd Imperial Pilots and 3rd Rebel Pilots Evolution sets. Can you tell us the other 2 figures which will be included with Fi in the Commandos set?

ANSWER:  The other figures are Alpha-17 (aka Alpha) in red armor and an Imperial Shadow Commando. We did not modify the torso or head, using the existing Commando body.

QUESTION:  Are there any plans to produce Force FX blasters at any point?

ANSWER:  Our focus remains on getting up to speed in the Force FX lightsaber business. We do not have plans, at least for now, to produce Force FX blasters.


QUESTION:  The recent "Lair of Grievous" Clone Wars episode seemed to beg this question – Are there any plans for a Battle Damaged General Grievous in the Clone Wars Line complete with removable legs and battle damaged face plate?

ANSWER:  We will be updating our Grievous sculpt for 2009 with some cool new touches….you just may like what you see. Stay tuned!

QUESTION:  Due to their prominence in the series, can we expect to receive a Clone Wars Super Battle Droid version that incorporates the large cannon-like arm in 2009?

ANSWER:  Yes, yes indeed.

QUESTION:  Since last week you clarified the some of features of the new Super Vulture Droid, what else can be said about it? Is it able to be transformed into its "walking" droid mode and has it indeed been "EU-ized" to carry a pilot/droid of some type?

ANSWER:  It will indeed be a walking-type model and we'll have more details at Toy Fair. However, due to the need to have a reasonable-sized pop-out head to complete the aesthetic, we decided against having a cockpit that would fit other figures and directed our energies to make the legs split and added firing missiles.


QUESTION:  Over the Holidays I purchased 1 of each of the AT-TE and the BMF. Both are very well loved by my 5 year old. I was so impressed with the Falcon that I bought a second for myself to display, because it really took me back to my younger years. My questions is since Hasbro has this kind of production capabilities to put into a vehicle. Why is this not applied across the board with other ships etc? On the action figure side, I bought my son almost 40 figures, I have to say the most impressive was the TLC GRIEVOUS that seems to be the correct scale. I have to ask, are you going to make one with a cape? That was the only disappointment. Keep up the good work and make more big ships. We want them all!

ANSWER:  We're glad you are thrilled with the results on the Millennium Falcon and AT-TE. We're a little uncertain what you mean when you ask why this type of production capability is not applied to the rest of the ships in the line. As a matter of fact, the exact same engineering and design team that worked on the big vehicles also delivers the $20-$25 SRP vehicles.

Each one is crafted to pack in as many details and play features as possible given our cost constraints; we do not deliberately short any Star Wars vehicle when it comes to features, fun, size, deco, and the like. If you mean to ask why Hasbro doesn't pursue more $100+ vehicles, which can be made much larger and packed with tons of features, the simple answer is that there are very few vehicles that we are confident can carry demand at that very risky price point, and it would be very dangerous for us to expand this focus against an uncertain economy.

What we know has been extremely successful is our focus on delivering newness in the $20-$25 vehicles, which have been extraordinarily well-received as a significant complement to the 3-3/4" figure line. We will have an announcement at Toy Fair regarding the status of the $100+ vehicle program. As for Grievous, we just could not afford to include a soft goods cape with him. There is a strong possibility that he will come out someday, perhaps slightly different, with a soft goods cape.

QUESTION:  In regards to the Jodo Kast figure - Any chance you will re-release him with a real articulated body like the Mando warriors offered through EE? The current release has a lack of features. Will we ever see Jodo Kast on a better, articulated body?

ANSWER:  It's unlikely that we will release another Jodo Kast figure. It took so long to fit this one into the lineup as it is…

QUESTION:  We have along wish list for figures from Clone Wars, to name a few Clone Trooper (scouts on Teth, from the movie) , Senate Security Clone Trooper (with pauldron, from Ambush), Nahdar Vebb, Jabba the Hutt's protocol droid, Clone Trooper (in Star Destroyer uniform), Senate Security Guard (from Cloak of Darkness), Nute Gunray, Toydarian king, and guards, Jabba's aliens (Weequay and Nikto), Trandoshan Trader (from Downfall of a Droid), Commander Gree, Lok Durd, Cad Bane and Twi'lek civilian! Make our Holiday and let us know which ones we will see in 2009 and share any pictures you may have!

ANSWER:  The good news for you is that with the staggering success of Clone Wars that we have a great lineup of basic figures and other formats (Battle Packs, etc) lined up for 2009. Many of the figures you have asked about are in the mix, although not all. The reality is that with so many characters coming fast and furious in various episodes, there is just no possibility of getting to everyone, but we are doing our best to get to the important ones who appear across episodes. That means some characters who only appear once, like Nahdarr Vebb or background characters, stand a very low likelihood of getting a figure. Given time though we are satisfied that you will love the rich Clone Wars lineup. We won't be releasing any images this close to Toy Fair; look for a full report from the websites covering the show in a few weeks.

Keep checking back for more Q&A postings as sites continue to file their own sessions with Hasbro.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2009, 05:35:04 PM by Gold 5 » Logged

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Gold 5
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« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2009, 05:24:05 PM »


***  Added two sites:
Creature Cantina
SW Action News
« Last Edit: February 06, 2009, 05:36:55 PM by Gold 5 » Logged

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