A heavy-hitting lineup of stars helped Disney Consumer Products introduce upcoming boys' toys product linked to eagerly anticipated film and TV releases this morning at the 2014 American International Toy Fair at New York’s Javits Center.
First up was Dane Cook, voice of Dusty Crophopper in Planes: Fire & Rescue, the animated comedy-adventure that opens July 18.
Crophopper, Cook said, “has great heart.” The talking air racer plane character was represented by Mattel’s Fire Blastin’ Dusty toy, which can shoot “water” balls at “fire” targets to realistic sounds and phrases.
Next came The Amazing Spider-Man 2, which is due on May 2. On hand were stars Andrew Garfield and Jorge Vega, who introduced film footage screened exclusively for Toy Fair along with complementary toy product, most notably Hasbro’s Spider-Man 2 Giant Web Slinging Spider-Man Figure, a 14-inch Spider-Man that shoots either Spidey Shot Web Fluid or water by means of a button on the figure’s back.
Garfield, who plays Spider-Man, thoughtfully related his ambivalent feelings toward the super-villain Electro, played by Jamie Foxx.
“It’s important to remember that villains aren’t born bad, [that] they were once a baby,” said Garfield. Foxx, he noted, “elicited so much empathy” in remaining a tragic character one could still care about.
“The idea is, Spider-Man is everyone,” said Garfield. “Everyone has Spider-Man inside.”
Chris Pratt, who plays Star-Lord in Marvel’s upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy, appeared via video to introduce toys deriving from the film, which opens Aug. 1. He was particularly pleased with Hasbro’s Star-Lord action figure, which features his voice and likeness, as well as the Star-Lord Quad Blaster, his signature weapon, which has double blasters and fires four NERF darts.
Freddie Prinze, Jr. closed the presentation on a particularly high note.
Prinze voices good guy Kanan in the animated TV series Star Wars Rebels, which launches in the fall on Disney XD. LEGO Star Wars Rebels Ghost Ship was on display, with Rebel mini-figures in the two cockpits, a 360-degree rotating turret, two spring-loaded shooters and storage for a spare missile, and a Lightsaber.
“If you’re anywhere near my age,” said the “close to 40” Prinze, “Star Wars is pretty much in your DNA.”
He added: “You’ve heard ‘May the Force be with you’ as much as you’ve heard ‘Have a nice day.’”
Prinze also gushed over the fact that he was now up there in action-figure stature with Harrison Ford, whom he revered when he himself was a fan of the original Star Wars franchise.
“I hope a kid comes up to me with a Kanan toy!” said Prinze. “I’m eight-years-old again all of a sudden. I don’t want to be talking about this, but play video games and play with toys.”
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