Sitting down to watch the blockbuster that was 2013's G.I. Joe: Retaliation, it is very easy to forget that you are witnessing a live-action adaptation of a toy. The popular children's action figure spawned an animated television series but it would be the 2009 title G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra that brought the character back into the mainstream conscious again after a lengthy absence.
Hasbro have been the leader in seeing their products go from the toy shelves to the big screen, paving the way forward with Michael Bay's Transformers franchise that raked in millions for all parties. But it is with G.I. Joe that the company are looking to adapt their operation alongside Paramount Pictures.
A G.I. For The 21st Century
Speaking with the Los Angeles Times this week, Hasbro's Simon Waters from the consumer products division referenced G.I. Joe to put the case forward that the character needs to appeal to millennials.
“The world has changed, and I think you’re going to see G.I. Joe changing with it,” Waters remarked. “There’s going to be a much more contemporary approach to the whole franchise, and that will allow us to develop different characters."
Head of Hasbro Stephen Davis told the publication that the company are wanting to have their cake and eat it too, by introducing those that are unaccustomed to the franchise and appeal to the diehards at the same time.
"We hope to create a head snap. It’s a different kind of ‘Joe’ — one that still resonates with ‘Joe’ fans but brings in an uninitiated audience and expands the audience internationally and domestically."
Movies Packaged and Profited From Just Like Toys
Chief analyst at Boxoffice.com Shawn Robbins inadvertently referenced a number of other Hasbro properties like ROM, Micronauts, Visionaries and M.A.S.K. to intimate that a raft of other toy-based movies are on their way.
“It only goes so deep in terms of toys and board games. But that’s not to say that demand can’t be manufactured on some level. Nostalgia is a big driver.”
This new trend doesn't appear like going away anytime soon as the facts and figures simply fall in their favor. Managing director at Liolios Group Sean McGowan affirmed this, arguing that for every flop of the genre, there are two or three success stories when it comes to the commercial side of the business.
“Toy companies probably have no more likelihood of succeeding at making a profitable movie than anybody else. It's still risky and expensive. There are a lot of cautionary tales. But there's still an allure.”
Source: LA Times