With the imminent release of Toy Story 4 on the horizon, Toy World spoke to Darran Garnham, CEO of Thinkway’s UK distributor MTW Toys.
Thinkway Toys has been a master toy partner for the Toy Story franchise since the first movie aired back in 1995, with the company partnering with Pixar on virtually every single movie the studio has produced. Recreating the magic of the Toy Story movies is at the heart of every toy Thinkway produces, and therefore the company places a firm emphasis on true-to-movie scale.
“While other products are available, especially when other licensees come on-board during movie release years, Thinkway’s 12” scale remains No. 1 in terms of quality, price and play,” explains Darran. “Woody and Jessie’s pull string feature is only carried by Thinkway, which really helps it translate from the big screen into real life. This is a significant point of difference. One of our media partners coined the phrase ‘It don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that string!’ We know fans want authenticity in their Toy Story toys and are willing to invest in them, so this will be a focus within our PR and communication.”
Thinkway’s Fall Down Feature Buzz and Woody, which drop to the floor just like their movie counterparts when given a verbal command, have generated a huge amount of excitement at recent trade shows and previews. The company aims to push development and innovation into new areas with each and every toy, keeping its offering unique and engaging to fans.
“The features built into our Fall Down Buzz and Woody, which allow them to interact with the consumer, are exciting enough, but to be able to trigger the fall down action on command is really very special,” Darran says. “Kids will feel in control. The line also offers our first free standing Woody. Given that this cowboy has rather skinny legs, it’s an incredible piece of engineering. Sometimes it seems that consumers can overlook how much work and skill has gone into developing a mechanism like that, or may not be willing to place the correct value upon it. We offer toys that match the content in the movies, providing fun and quality that can be passed down through the generations.”
He adds: “We have images of Thinkway fans with their Buzz and Woody toys of 25 years ago, alongside those bought more recently for their own children. Not many toy companies have achieved this multi-generational connection.”
To read the full interview, which was published in the 2019 Licensing World supplement, click here.