'The Walking Dead' Action Figures Announced
TV and Comic Figure Lines Coming Fall 2011 from McFarlane Toys
Friday, April 01, 2011
As avid The Walking Dead enthusiasts, announcing The Walking Dead licensing deal at this year's Toy Fair in New York, was pretty exciting for us. For many media folks, retailers and other attendees, this was the highlight of Toy Fair. Combine the announcement with an incredible display of The Walking Dead comic book prototypes, and you're as a close to toy heaven as it gets for McFarlane Toys collectors.
So here the skinny on the deal--McFarlane Toys has secured two separate deals concerning the licensing rights of The Walking Dead. The first is with AMC to create action figures based on the original series that premiered on the network in October of last year. AMC's The Walking Dead is the most watched drama series in basic cable history. The Walking Dead had 49.1 million total viewers watching the show across all episodes (premiere and encores) over the six week season. The series was also nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Television Series -- Drama.
"AMC is excited to be working with McFarlane Toys to develop The Walking Dead TV Series collectibles, which will capture some truly unforgettable characters in all their intensity and gear," said Theresa Beyer, VP of activation and promotion for AMC. "McFarlane Toys has an exceptional reputation in the action figure category, and we’re looking forward to developing figures that really capture The Walking Dead."
The second deal is with famed comic writer Robert Kirkman to produce action figures based on his hit comic book series The Walking Dead. Robert Kirkman is a New York Times bestselling author known for being the cultural zeitgeist of the comic book industry. Kirkman won the 2010 Eisner Award for Best Continuing Series for The Walking Dead. The series tells the story of the months and years that come after a zombie apocalypse. It follows a group of survivors, led by police officer Rick Grimes, who travel in search of a safe and secure home.
The comic goes on to explore the challenges of life in a world overrun by zombies who take a toll on the survivors, and sometimes the interpersonal conflicts present a greater danger to their continuing survival than the zombies that roam the country. Over time, the characters are changed by the constant exposure to death and some grow willing to do anything to survive. The comic book series was adapted into an AMC television series last October. The first season was released on DVD and Blu-ray on March 8, with the second season set to debut in Fall 2011.
Todd McFarlane and Kirkman have a history of comic book collaborations (Haunt, Spawn) and both are fans of the other's work, but this is the first action figure collaboration and both are totally stoked.
"Kirkman has created a world that is macabre and suspenseful with deeply drawn characters: both human and zombies," said Todd McFarlane, McFarlane Toys' creative force and CEO. "Working with the creative talents of Kirkman and AMC, we have planned figures lines that authentically represent both the television and comic series -- including mind-blowing details, likenesses and play action. We want to push the envelope so that the true essence of 'The Walking Dead' series is captured."
"I simply cannot contain my excitement over working with McFarlane Toys," said Robert Kirkman, creator of The Walking Dead comic-book series. "For nearly two decades McFarlane Toys have proven themselves to be leading the pack when it comes to making cool looking, innovative toys, and I'm thrilled that they're going to continue to do so with The Walking Dead.
This is the first time action figures have been produced and both lines are available to retailers this Fall as follows:
The Walking Dead Comic Book Series 1 releases September 2011, and contains four fan-favorite characters, including Officer Rick Grimes, Michonne, Zombie Lurker and Zombie Roamer.
November 2011 will bring the release of The Walking Dead AMC Television Series line-up of Deputy Rick Grimes, Daryl Dixon, Zombie Walker and Zombie Biter.
Now, if that isn't exciting enough for you, we have more tricks up our sleeves. Can you say tons of articulation and play action?! Each human figure includes multiple interchangeable accessories and several points of articulation for limitless possibility and customization. Each zombie figure features unique, gory, play action such as exploding heads and removable limbs. Figures are expected to sell for around $14.99 at retailers nationwide.