VEGAS 09: Marvel heading to expo on a high

Momentum from excellent 2008 is being continued says exec VP; Iron Man 2, more Spider-man and Super Hero Squad booth highlights.
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The executive vice president of Marvel Entertainment International has told that the firm has been enjoying a positive start to 2009 and is looking forward to showing its portfolio in Vegas this week.

Sandrine de Raspide stated that Marvel generated over $850 million in theatrical revenues, shipped over 22 million DVDs and expanded its licensing programme globally (including in territories such as India) in 2008.

“The release of Marvel’s first wholly-produced movies introduced new characters to consumers of all ages and cultural backgrounds,” she said. “It allowed for new retail partnerships to be born and also introduced fresh properties into our licensing program.”

Visitors to Marvel’s booth at Licensing International can expect to see “more movies, more animation, more Spider-man and pop culture” according to de Raspide.

The firm has been putting in the ground work with retailers for Iron Man 2, which is due to launch in May 2010, while it is also due to announce some new partnerships during the expo. Other upcoming film releases it will be focusing on include Thor, Captain America and The Avengers.

On the animation side, Marvel will be showcasing the Super Hero Squad, which is due to premiere in English territories over the fourth quarter. Licensed products featuring a refreshed Spider-man classic guide will also be on the booth, along with Marvel Comics.

However, while de Raspide is confident in Marvel’s line-up, she admits that the overall market and the consumers are still extremely nervous due to the current economic climate. “We need to rediscover the spirit of having fun with our life and work,” she said.

“This is what consumers and retailers alike expect us to deliver, as licensors. Hopefully our entertainment properties will manage to achieve just that.”


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