News for Jul. 16, 2005

Universal Studios Consumer Products and Playmates Toys to Unveil Highly Anticipated 'King Kong' Toy Line at Comic-Con International

7/16/05, 9:42 am EST - Xoanon

'King Kong' Action Figures and Accessories From Master Toy Licensee to Hit Retail Later This Year

COSTA MESA, Calif., July 15 /PRNewswire/ -- After months of eager anticipation, Universal Studios Consumer Products Group and Playmates Toys will unveil the complete line of "King Kong" toys, based on Universal Pictures' December 14th release, "King Kong," from three-time Academy Award® winner Peter Jackson ("The Lord of the Rings" trilogy), at Comic-Con International this weekend in San Diego. Following the worldwide trailer debut of the film last month, the toy line premiere allows fans another sneak peak at the new world of "King Kong."


As Universal Studio Consumer Product Group's master toy licensee for "King Kong", Playmates has brought Kong and his adversaries to life in a variety of different action figure collections, role play toys, playsets and battling action games. The toys will arrive on retail shelves October 1st. During Comic-Con, the "King Kong" line-up will be displayed at Diamond Comics, booth #2401.

Universal Pictures' "King Kong" arrives in theaters December 14th.

Playmates Toys' launch season product line includes:

Basic Figure Asst.:
- 6" scale (8 styles total)
- Available this fall at mass market retailers for the suggested retail price $9.99

Deluxe Figure Asst.:
- At a towering 11", the Deluxe Roaring Kong and Deluxe Bull T-Rex action figures
- 11" scale (2 figures total) -- Deluxe Roaring Kong and Deluxe Bull T-Rex
- Both figures feature 14 points of articulation at the neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, hands, hips and knees
- SRP $17.99

14" Feature Kong Figure:
- Highly detailed 14" figure features sound effects including roaring, stomping and ambient jungle noises
- With 22 points of articulation, this Kong walks around on his front knuckles and when standing up, Kong shakes his arms in the air
- SRP $24.99

Role Play Toys:
- Role play set includes Kong mask and breakaway chains
- Deluxe, electronic Kong arms allow children to experience the power of Kong
- SRP $9.99 and $19.99

Battling Action Game:
- Kong vs. T-Rex Battle Game including 6" Kong and 6" T-Rex
- Game features posable Kong and T-Rex figures that twist and swing to attack, each monster has a collapsible feature, and unique fighting techniques
- SRP $14.99

Skull Island Playset:
- Multi environment playset inspired by the mysterious Skull Island
- Designed to play with the 6" action figure collection
- SRP $29.99

Soft Figures:
- 8" Kong basic soft figures
- 11" roaring Kong soft figures includes chest-activated roaring sounds
- SRP $5.99 and $9.99

About "King Kong"

Triple Academy Award® winner Peter Jackson ("The Lord of the Rings" trilogy) directs the dramatic adventure "King Kong," bringing his sweeping cinematic vision to the iconic story of the gigantic ape captured in the wild and brought to civilization where he meets his tragic fate. Jackson assumes directing, producing and co-screenwriting duties and surrounds himself with a list of superlative filmmaking and acting talents. Jackson re-teams with longtime collaborators Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, co-writing the screenplay with three-time Oscar®-winning partner Walsh and their "The Lord of the Rings" co-writer, Academy Award® winner Boyens. Jan Blenkin, Carolynne Cunningham, Fran Walsh and Jackson produce the film under their WingNut Films banner.

Academy Award® nominee Naomi Watts ("21 Grams") portrays Ann Darrow, an actress from the world of vaudeville who finds herself out of a job in Depression-era New York. Her luck changes when she meets Carl Denham, played by Jack Black ("School of Rock"). Denham is an entrepreneur, raconteur, adventurer and filmmaker who is struggling to make a name for himself in the entertainment industry. Bold, ebullient and charismatic, Denham has a natural sense of showmanship and an appetite for greatness, which ultimately leads to catastrophe. Academy Award® winner Adrien Brody ("The Pianist") steps into the role of Jack Driscoll, a New York playwright, who becomes an unlikely hero in a romantic adventure story which will test his physical courage and his heart.

Andy Serkis (who performed the role of the CGI character Gollum in "The Lord of the Rings" Trilogy) provided both on-set performance reference and motion capture performance for the title character of "King Kong." Serkis also appears onscreen playing Lumpy the cook, in service aboard the tramp steamer Venture, bound for Skull Island, under the command of Captain Englehorn, played by Thomas Kretschmann ("U-571.") Colin Hanks ("Orange County") portrays a production assistant to filmmaker Carl Denham and Kyle Chandler (television's "Early Edition") takes on the role of Bruce Baxter, a 1930's movie star cast opposite Ann Darrow in the film Denham is shooting.

Visual effects are again accomplished by New Zealand-based companies Weta Digital, under the direction of Oscar® winner Joe Letteri and Weta Workshop, under the direction of Oscar® winner Richard Taylor. Visual effects and miniatures will supplement practical locations in creating the primordial jungles of Skull Island and the bustling metropolis of '30s-period Manhattan.

About Universal Studios Consumer Products Group

Universal Studios Consumer Products Group is responsible for global licensing and retail strategies as well as building brand recognition of the extensive catalogue of NBC Universal properties. Universal Studios Consumer Products Group is a unit of NBC Universal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. Formed in May 2004 through the combining of NBC and Vivendi Universal Entertainment, NBC Universal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, and world-renowned theme parks. NBC Universal is 80%-owned by General Electric, with 20% controlled by Vivendi Universal.

About Playmates Toys

With more than thirty-five years of experience, Playmates Toys, Inc., is among the most well respected and innovative marketing and distribution companies in the global toy industry. Playmates has a proven history in the creation of profitable, long-term brand franchises.

Among the company's best-known proprietary brands are the unique water-filled "Water Babies®" dolls that have sold more than 15 million units, "Speedeez(TM)" micro vehicles and play sets and the "Amazing" brand of interactive dolls and plush toys. Core licensed character and entertainment brands include Disney® Princesses and classic characters, Universal Studios'/Peter Jackson's "King Kong," Nickelodeon's "everGirl," Breakthrough Entertainment's production of the Cartoon Network's television series "Atomic Betty" and Mirage Studios' "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles." From its offices in Hong Kong, China and the United States, Playmates designs, develops, markets and distributes its products in over sixty countries worldwide. Playmates Toys, Inc., is a division of Playmates Holdings Limited, a Hong Kong-based company whose stock is traded on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.