Exclusive: Nick Gibbs-McNeil on this summer’s blockbuster releases

Published on: 12th September 2022

Nick Gibbs-McNeil looks at the raft of blockbuster movies that have hit screens this year and how successful the accompanying CP slate has been.

Our columnist Nick Gibbs-McNeil has a particular interest in the kids’ space and the film industry, and is publisher/editor at and A prolific contributor to social media, Nick’s excitement at the return of cinema this summer, and his enthusiasm to take in all the latest blockbusters, has been much in evidence.

“There was a moment this year where, on my second viewing of Top Gun Maverick, I stood and watched punters excitedly getting ready for their cinema experience,” he writes. “Loads of people of all ages, all ethnic backgrounds, all gender profiles, all members of our beautifully diverse United Kingdom. Everyone in that foyer was nothing other than a movie fan. We were all the same and joyfully anticipating the mighty adventures we were all about embark on.”

With honourable mentions for Spider-Man No Way Home, Top Gun Maverick, Minions: The Rise of Gru, Thor: Love and Thunder, Jurassic World Dominion and the Baz Luhrmann spectacular, Elvis, Nick goes on to examine to what extent these blockbuster releases have been supported (or not) with Consumer Product Merchandise, and whether some studios have missed a major opportunity. His own Top Gun collection of merchandise should be bigger, he admits. (Fans with deep pockets might be interested in our story here.)

“Cinema has come back, just as we’d always known it before we got locked away in our homes – and audiences appear to be enjoying being back, just as much as they are enjoying watching movies/shows on streaming channels,” says Nick. “My question is do we not gamble in this business anymore? Do we play it too safe and just rely on jumping onboard once the horse has bolted and we can see it’s definitely crossing the finish line first?”

Nick urges retailers and licensees to look ahead to the next crop of upcoming blockbuster releases (he mentions DreamWorks Puss in Boots, The Flash, DC Superhero, Aquaman, Black Panther and the first of the Avatar sequels), to avoid missing out.

To read more of his thoughts, see the full article, which appeared in the September edition of Toy World, here.


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