Mattel continues their push into film, as J.J. Abrams will be helping the toy company bring The Beastlies to life. Abrams has had a lot of success not only in crafting films and TV, but in producing various content across both mediums. From Lost to Cloverfield to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the storyteller’s influence has continued to expand and he and his company Bad Robot have a lot on the horizon.
Though The Cloverfield Paradox was poorly received, there’s still a fair amount of buzz behind Cloverfield 4. Likewise, the Super Bowl trailer for Westworld season 2 proved that the heady HBO series overseen by Bad Robot still has the ability to entice audiences. Along with those franchises and the director’s return for Star Wars: Episode IX, J.J. Abrams is working on a new sci-fi show. The series will be the first series he’s fully created since Alias and his major return to TV following his co-creation of Fringe. Now, the creative has another interesting project in the works in a medium he’s yet to dabble in: toys.
Deadline is reporting that J.J. Abrams and Mattel are working together to bring the toyline The Beastlies to life. Created by sculptor Leslie Levings, Abrams first spotted the creatures in 2010 and eventually pitched the idea of a franchise to Mattel during filming for The Force Awakens. No other details on the potential franchise are yet known, but the adorable figures certainly have potential for all sorts of merchandise and animated offerings.
The venture may be an unusual one for Abrams, but it’s clear he’s long loved the toys and developing a more family-focused project would make sense. What’s more, being on the ground floor of what could become a popular multi-platform IP is certainly a wise move for Abrams. Mattel will also gain a new line of toys and yet another way to break into film. They will similarly be bringing a live-action Barbie film to life in teh foreseeable future, in the hopes of competing with rival Hasbro on the big screen.
For Hasbro’s part, they’ve got films based on Micronauts and G.I. Joe coming up, along with Transformers. In fact, Hasbro announced their new film slate and it seems Transformers will be getting a reboot after Bumblebee. Mattel’s offerings certainly differ from the more action-focused work Hasbro has in mind, but the competition could soon be moot.
A recent rumor suggested Hasbro may buy Mattel, merging two of the biggest toy companies in the world. If the deal goes through, Hasbro would have considerably more might to adapt their many toys and IPs into films and TV shows. For now, however, Mattel and Abrams will be working on their own to develop The Beastlies into something.
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