The Walt Disney Co. is taking an interesting tack to boost revenues for its consumer products and interactive media unit, by encouraging Star Wars fans to create their own video stories and skits using the latest line of action figures ahead of the premiere of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Videos will be featured on the Star Wars YouTube channel.
Disney partnered with creative network Tongal to make the first set of fan-generated videos, which debuted on Wednesday.
Clearly, the company hopes that the fan-made videos will generate enthusiasm around the release of the newest action figures in the Star Wars franchise. Last year, Disney teamed with Maker Studios’ stable of creators for a series of “unboxing” videos featuring action figures released in tandem with The Force Awakens.
Enthusiasm around last year’s film release along with the new toy line contributed to a 7 percent overall rise in sales for the U.S. toy industry, a Bloomberg article noted.
The new toys, created by several licensees including Hasbro, Lego, Mattel, Jakks Pacific and Elite, hit the retail market on Sept. 30 – giving Disney a month to build buzz around the products. Tongal, which produced the first chapter of the “Go Rogue” series, will publish new installments on the Star Wars YouTube channel throughout this month.
Beginning Sept. 30, more fans can enter their own Rogue One-centric videos featuring the new toys into a contest, and winners will be invited to a screening of new movie in San Francisco.
“The Go Rogue campaign was designed with Star Wars fans in mind -- we want them to be front and center in the run up to Rogue One by imagining and creating their own Rogue Stories,” said Jimmy Pitaro, chairman of Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media, in a release.