The original film debuted back in 2002, a time when Pixar was being widely lauded for its animation techniques and pulling in major audiences. It’s probably fair to say that the success of Ice Age came out of the left field somewhat, but the spot on animation, the likeable characters and storylines which appeal to kids and adults alike, have helped to turn it into a multi-billion dollar franchise. Indeed, it’s made over £1.2 billion at the worldwide box office.
Ice Age 2: The Meltdown followed in 2006, breaking box office records with the biggest March opening ever of $68 million. To date, for both films, more than 60 million DVDs have been sold worldwide.
All this means that it should come as no surprise that Ice Age 3 – Dawn of the Dinosaurs – is a priority picture for Fox. Hitting cinemas worldwide on July 3rd (in 2D and 3D), there are more than 200 licensees globally for the franchise covering every imaginable category.
In the US, two of the biggest deals include partnerships with HarperCollins – for a collection of story and puzzle books – and Hallmark, for cards and party goods.
In Latin America – where, in Mexico, Ice Age 2 was the most successful theatrical release ever, animated or live action – Fox Licensing will oversee some 15 Ice Age 3 promotions with partners such as Kraft, Bimbo, Sabritas/Frito Lay and Casino. In addition, Fox has made a direct to retail deal with La Falabella in Chile, Peru, Argentina and Colombia for apparel, underwear, sleepwear, blankets, thermos, duvets, melamine sets, beach towels and plush dolls.
Moving into Europe, and over 70 licensees have been signed up across all key categories including toys and games, stationery, apparel, gift, accessories, food and housewares. Worldwide partners include Activision (video games), Glu (mobile games), Gravity (online games), HarperCollins (activity/story books), DK Publishing, The Promotions Factory (figurines), Pez International (confectionery) and Panini (sticker collections).
In the UK, licensees include Posh Paws (master plush), Ravensburger (board games and puzzles), Winning Moves (Top Trumps), Alligator Books (colour/activity books), PMS (amusement plush) and new partner RDP (clocks/watches).
Additional key categories include Aykroyds (kids’ nightwear), Fashion UK (kids’ outerwear), GB Eye (posters, pin badges and postcards), Mr Lucky Bags (novelty confectionery), BBS (party paperware and melamine), Beiersdorf (plasters) and Bon Bon Buddies (chocolate advent calendars).
Major international theatrical promotional partners include Ferrero for products across the Kinder range and Unilever for a line of Ice Age 3 ice creams.
Meanwhile, this summer the Finnish/Swedish ferry line Tallink Silja will be decorating five of its cruise ships with an Ice Age 3 theme, creating an ‘Ice Age Play Land’ on board. Significant direct to retail deals have also been inked with C&A across multiple territories, as well as with X5 in Russia for the first time.
X5 will launch a range of Ice Age 3 branded household products in 1,500 stores across the Russian Federation, as well as a themed retail promotion in 196 of its largest stores.
“The program is a true testament to the strength and appeal of the Ice Age brand and Fox as a global entertainment and licensing company,” says Elie Dekel, executive vice president of licensing and merchandising at Fox. “Our teams are working together to make sure that fans of the film can continue to embrace Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs even after stepping out of the movie theatre.”