Following an uproar over the production of 8-inch action figures based on the main characters in Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained," the film's studio, The Weinstein Company, has asked toymaker NECA (National Entertainment Collectibles Association) to discontinue production of the figures -- and its already sparked an online buying frenzy.
Produced and released last month were figures of Django (Jamie Foxx), Schultz (Christoph Waltz), Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio), Broomhilda (Kerry Washington), Stephen (Samuel L. Jackson) and Butch (James Remar).
The Los Angeles Times reports that the studio received complaints that figures were offensive and trivialized the horrors of slavery, and the likes of The Rev. Al Sharpton and his National Action Network called for a national boycott of them.
The Weinstein Co. issued a statement Friday, saying, "In light of the reaction to the 'Django Unchained' action figures, we are removing them from distribution. We have tremendous respect for the audience and it was never our intent to offend anyone."
Weinstein also noted that the figures were "meant to be collectibles for people 17 years and older, which is the audience for the film."
Not surprisingly, the figures have found a lucrative secondary market on eBay. A complete set of six figures -- which retailed at approximately $30, sold for $5,100, and figures of Django alone have gone for as much as $800.
NECA, meanwhile, still has the figures featured on their website, although they are not listed for sale there.
"Django Unchained," which received Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay (Tarantino) and Best Supporting Actor (Waltz) Oscar nominations, has earned more than $130 million at the North American box office to date.