Warner Bros. Consumer Products UK has partnered with several UK firms on special retail promotions to support The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.
UK bookstore Waterstones is featuring an installation in its Piccadilly store which transforms the whole of the children’s area into Hobbiton.
This features custom-made decoration and furniture where families can read and complete themed activity sheets alongside a green screen photo opportunity for fans who can then share their photos on the Waterstones Facebook page.
A full range of licensed products are on sale and Waterstones are supporting the initiative on its website and through social media channels.
Other retail activities launched in the UK include a competition with Argos to win a Lonely Mountain map signed by Richard Armitage who plays Thorin Oakenshield.
Toys “R” Us and Cartoon Network are promoting a limited-edition The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug poster with a TV spot and through their online hub, following the success of a similar promotion back in September.
Children’s website Swapit is running an eight-week competition with brand partners including LEGO, Vivid and HarperCollins to win tickets to an exclusive screening of The Desolation of Smaug while The Entertainer is has a competition that offers the winner an exclusive screening of film for the whole family.
“Last year’s campaign with Waterstones succeeded in bringing the magic of the big screen into a traditional retail environment," said Paul Bufton, general manager of Warner Bros. Consumer Products UK.
"The result was high volume product sales and an unforgettable store-in-store experience for the fans, and we’re thrilled to be working with them again this Christmas.
"The success of the first film demonstrated the enormous potential of The Hobbit Trilogy and we are delighted that retailers have been getting behind The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug with such force.
"We’ve put together a strong schedule of retail activity that will be crucial to ensuring that the superb licensed merchandise stands out during this highly competitive retail period.”
Partners on board to create licensed The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug products include co-master toy licensee Vivid Group with action figures, collectors’ figures and role play toys in support of the films.
LEGO has released a LEGO Games build-and-change construction game, as well as construction sets inspired by key moments from the films.
Elsewhere, Rubie’s has created costumes and accessories based on the leading characters and HarperCollins has published a range of tie-in books.
Fans can also don the latest fashions from Middle Earth thanks to apparel partners including TV Mania and Fabric Flavours.