As studios hide behind a veil of secrecy, toys uncloak the mystery.
Everyone is clamoring for the first look at Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Unlike the reveal for The Force Awakens, that started promotion in earnest on November 28th, 2014 with the teaser trailer, information on The Last Jedi has been minuscule. No posters, TV spots, or trailers have been released thus far. The best guess would be the Star Wars Celebration on April 14th, 2017, but otherwise the roll out for The Last Jedi is nonexistent.
That all changed this week, but it was unusual in the way it was presented. The official Star Wars Twitter account posted an image of the box art for the upcoming Star Wars: The Last Jedi toy line:
Your first look at #TheLastJedi product packaging dropping out of hyperspace on September 1 for #ForceFridayII. https://t.co/KSFdXbfBHq
This was basically used as promotion for Force Friday II, the first opportunity the public will have to get goods for The Last Jedi. This is the box art those figures and items will come in.
While showcasing the box art for their upcoming toys, they have also introduced the world to some new Star Wars information. Just from that image alone we can deduct that Finn survives his fate at the end of The Force Awakens and that Rey will become much more confident with a lightsaber in the new film. Certainly this isn’t groundbreaking, but when there is nothing coming from Disney about The Last Jedi, this new information is exciting nevertheless.
As audiences are clamoring for new Star Wars footage and news, the media are also greatly anticipating information as well. Countless news posts have been made proposing dates of when the new trailer will be released and what to expect. There have even been websites analyzing the title for The Last Jedi in different languages and trying to determine whether it is plural (it is). Whatever the reason Disney has decided to withhold starting promotion for The Last Jedi, everyone has been dying to find out what happens after The Force Awakens.
Movies are having characters revealed due to new toys than ever. While it has happened plenty throughout the years, there seems to be more attention than ever placed upon the reveals from toy companies. Plenty of new characters were shown during the New York Toy Fair, from companies trying to sell their upcoming product. Disney in-particular seems to encounter this issue.
A toy for the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2 was shown during the fair and it shows the best look of Kurt Russel’s character, Ego the Living Planet. Even though there have been plenty of trailers showing Star Lord and company, Kurt Russel’s character has been absent throughout. The first look is a two-pack father/son package with Star Lord included.
Disney isn’t the only studio showcasing their movie properties at the Toy Fair. Warner Bros was also showing toys for the upcoming Wonder Woman movie. ToyArk took pictures of the display and among the figures present were Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman, Chris Pine’s Steve Trevor and Connie Nielsen’s Queen Hippolyta. Also there was a look at Wonder Woman’s famous nemesis, Ares, who has not yet been featured in a trailer.
It is believed that Harry Potter actor David Thewlis will be the voice actor for Ares, while he will be created via CGI and practical effects.
This is where we are when it comes to covering upcoming movies. As more studios hide behind a veil of secrecy regarding their properties, so does the fervor to get more information. Due to the industry of selling toys, toy fairs and comic book conventions show new characters far before audiences will see them in action. Whereas trailers for blockbuster properties carefully pick and choose what to show, toys are made to showcase every character. That means many will get their first introductions to a character through a plastic model, rather than on the big screen.