We just got back from Hasbro’s showroom and their roll out for 2009. Their old showroom space (the one you see in the movie BIG…is now a Home Depot). They rented space this year in the Times Center.
The space was big but still it’s just not the same experience. Toy Fair used to be heavy on the glitz. Each big new toy would have actors that would act out a scene related to the product. The Barbie show room had life size women dressed up as all the new Barbies of the season (really). The reveal would come on a moving stage and there would be smoke and a tremendous amount of pink…pink lighting, pink carpet, pink costumes, pink jewels! And for years the actor who looked like Robin Williams was a staple of our toy fair experience. I wonder where he went?
There would also be collectibles for the press of special toy fair editions of Matchbox cars, Star Wars…you name it. And the press kits used to be heavy and given in big totes with the brand names boldly printed. Today we got a thumb drive in a little plastic envelope. That’s it. No toys, no samples, no chocolate even…just a thumb drive. Makes sense…but it’s still a little sad.
So we start the process and as always I’ll be updating you on all the new products that will compete for those scarce toy dollars this year—I just needed to share how things have changed.