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Mattel Disney Pixar CARS & PLANES & TOONS – 2016 & Beyond

There was a Toon, “To Protect & Serve” promised last year but seems to have disappeared – what happened? Of course, this is purely speculation on my part but I think it had to do with the diecast license up for renewal. With the uncertainly of whether Mattel was going to get the new license, I think the contract was tied in to properties so if the Toon had aired when it did in Spring of 2015, it might’ve have lengthened Mattel’s contract to Spring 2016 when they needed to lock things down by December 31, 2015. But since it’s all resolved, we should see the Toon soon.

If you can’t wait, you can read the book – should take you about 3 minutes. 🙂


It looks like the Protect & Serve 3-packs diecasts are arriving back in stores (thanks, John H) … so maybe the Toon will air in Spring 2016.


I think this also explains the strange non-distribution of the Neon Racers book. It seems the few copies that arrived in stores is more of a leak but now that the contract is signed and Mattel probably has the license for another 5 years, we’ll probably get a real release of the Neon Racers book as well as the remaining diecasts from the race released. Thanks for the great pic, “Quercy.”


So, what happened to PLANES 3? Well, I think a couple things. Again speculation on my part but when they decided to do the PLANES movies way back in the ancient days of 2011/2012 (for 2013), there was a two-fold reason:

  1. The theatrical marketplace supported quality “second tier” animated films when there were gaps in the schedule (after 5 weeks of a major animated release, kids and parents were willing to pay to see a second tier title).
  2. While internally, they knew CARS 3 was coming, at the earliest, there was still potentially 5-6 years before CARS 3 and they needed a “CARS World” property to serve as a reminder for kids … to them a year is about 33% of their lifespan, 🙂

But the world changes fast. The theatrical marketplace for animation has changed because the theatrical marketplace has changed even in the few short intervening years. There are only 52 weeks in a year (pretty insightful I know but wait for it). Each studio is releasing 5-6 movies a year they expect or hope to do $400 million dollar MINIMUM on average. With 5 major studios, with 5-6 potential blockbusters – that’s pretty much 30 WEEKS blocked off and of course, the expectation is that they’ll stay #1 for two to three weeks at least … and if you subtract out the slower periods of the year, JAN/FEB/SEPT/OCT – you can see there’s not much room left. This new market dynamic is why we’ve lost most adult dramas except for the few months leading up to Oscar season. They are mostly tiny indie films now because only an action adventure film can break out and do hundreds of millions to billions.

Of course, some movies will bomb but a year out, it’s not easy to tell and of course, there are surprises. But basically, with so many weeks on the line and so few releases – Disney has basically a Star Wars, a Pixar movie or two, a Disney main animation release and at least one Marvel movie EVERY YEAR – they just don’t have the bandwidth to market a smaller title. It’s like the old adage that it costs Bill Gates money and a waste of his time and money to stop and pick up a $100 dollar bill on the ground. 🙂 Basically, why bother with pocketing $50 million from a PLANES 3 when they can make an EXTRA $200 million for the same marketing on a Pixar or Disney Animation main release? Or note – Star Wars: Force Awakens did about $250 MILLION dollars in its opening weekend. Now, obviously there was a little pent up demand for this title but why bunt when you can swing away, right?

Also, when they moved CARS 3 up a year to 2017, there wasn’t the need to have a “reminder” property with kids. The MAIN CARS World property would be getting  a refresh for this generation of kids.

So, we’ll probably get a PLANES 3 probably in 2019 or sooner but most likely it’ll be a VOD release as people are more comfortable with just click to download.

Of course, we’re at 1,000 diecast releases without PLANES … so by 2018, we should be well on our way to the next 1,000.

Keep your cash/Venmo/OneClicktoPay/PP/ApplePay handy.

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