While this year has been an incredibly successful year for Star Trek, Playmates Toys has told TrekMovie that it is placing its future Star Trek line on hold for possible reorganization. TrekMovie has the details.
Playmates Trek On Hold
In 2009, Star Trek fans and collectors were greeted with a sight unseen for nearly a decade: the return of Star Trek toys to mainstream retail stores. One of the companies responsible for helping bring Trek items back to retailers was Playmates Toys whose line of 3.75", 6", and 12" action figures, along with role playing, playsets, and toy ships was one of the most extensive toy lines ever produced for a Star Trek movie. Playmates Toys is one of a very small group of toy companies that has the ability to bring items to the shrinking number of retail toy stores and had been successful in convincing stores to take another chance on Star Trek (2009) items.
Bridge Playset and Figures + Enterprise toy- just part of Playmates first wave of Star Trek toys released in April
Playmates recently released a few more items, such as the Star Trek Movie Utility Belt role playing set and two 12" action figures, Sulu and Pike, which are exclusive to Toys R Us. For this autumn, an entirely new wave of action figures was planned, including accessories to help complete the bridge playset and toy versions of the Narada and Jellyfish ships. In addition, there were possibilities of 3.75" action figures based on the original television show and other lines announced at a recent toy fair.
Star Trek utility belt role play toy released over the Summer
Unfortunately all future lines of Star Trek items from Playmates Toys plans are currently on hold. Some major retail stores have not yet made decisions about future orders pending what happens with their current stock of the April line of toys and online presales were not as much as required to justify the production of a second wave of figures. Some retailers such as some Target stores have reduced the price of Star Trek items to clearance and removed them from the regular aisle. Those fans who have placed preorders with online retailers should contact them for more information. Playmates Toys has told TrekMovie that they are committed to Star Trek and hope to continue the line in the future if sales make that a possibility.
Regardless, Playmates is currently working on a plan to help collectors finish their bridge and transporter playsets. Some of the pieces for the sets were set to be included in Wave 2 figures. TrekMovie will report when Playmates has more details on those bridge pieces.
Some of the figures from Playmate’s Star Trek wave 2 – now on hold
The issues with toy sales is not unique to Star Trek. In the Summer Playmates cancelled their plans for a second wave of toys based on Terminator Salvation. Other movie toy lines have also had issues, including Hasbro’s GI Joe. And even though Hasbro’s Transformers toys have sold well, many retailers over-bought the line expecting even greater sales. Bottom line is that the weak economy has not been good for toys, and so Star Trek’s big comeback to the mainstream retailers is on hold. That being said, Playmates is still hopeful for the future and still bullish on Star Trek. Playmates VP of marketing Paul Fish tells TrekMovie that they hope to pick up the license for the 2012 Star Trek sequel, and they expect that film to be even more "toy friendly."
TrekMovie will bring any information about the future of the Playmates Toys Star Trek movie line to fans as we get the information. For those wishing to complete their collection, many Walmart and Toys R Us are selling Star Trek toys, both online and at retail stores.