Sunday, February 24, 2013

Awesome new #toys for #MonstersUniversity and exclusive #Disney #Pixar interviews! #MonstersUToyFair #TF13 #TFNY #ToyFair

Getitng my picture with Sulley after we found the photobooth the next day, #MonstersUToyFair, Monsters University preview
Alright, I'll be honest...as I threw on my Vanellope shirt that morning, I had no idea what Disney adventures it would take me on. It must be the Disney magic I so believe in. Fast forward through the rainy morning and the metro ride and I arrived to see a sight for sore eyes...Monsters U campus orientation!!
Monsters University Orientation, Press event, #MonstersUToyFair
Are you ready to preview what I saw? A fun-filled presentation, preceded by a marching band, walked us through some of the new characters and toys that will be coming out with the movie with the director (Dan Scanlon), producer (Kori Rae), Executive VP of Global Licensing (Josh Silverman), and the famous voice of Sulley, John Goodman.
Monsters U Orientation with Dan Scanlon & Kori Rae, #MonstersUToyFair, John Lasseter
At campus orientation, we learnt about the upcoming prequel to Monsters Inc., Monsters University. The burning question in our mind though was, "Why so long? It's been 11 years." Dan Scanlon (Director) responded by saying that at Pixar, they don't want to do anything until they're for sure it'll be a great movie. That answer makes me happy because the first was epic so I wouldn't expect any less from the second one.

Monsters University is the story of how Mike and Sulley first met. Mmhmm, fans of Monsters Inc. may remember differently (I'll explain in the Q & A section below). They didn't always get along. Mike actually aspired to be a scarer so things got competitive with Sulley, the natural scarer, the jock if you will. In fact, they got kicked out of school rather quickly because of that. To get back in, Mike comes up with a loophole but it means he must team up with Sulley and work together with a bunch of rejected scarers from school. Together, they form their own fraternity.
Monsters University Oosma Kappa Fraternity, New Toys for Monsters University, #MonstersUToyFair
The Oosma Kappa Fraternity of rejected oddball scarers have set up HQ in Squishy's mom's basement. The members are comprised of:
-Don Carlton (Joel Murray) is the older, mature student who's gone back to college to chase a dream of becoming a scarer.
-Twins Terry (Dave Foley) and Terri (Sean Hayes) are the bickering brothers who wanted to be scarers but it just didn't work out. Terri is the younger twin and is now a dance student.
-Scott Squishy Squibbles (Peter Sohn) is the guy that doesn't know who he wants to be.
-Art (Charlie Day) is the college guy who you don't really know anything about, the weird guy who hangs out in his room all day. For some reason, he's become quite popular according to Dan and Kori and I can see why after seeing the new clip that I'm not allowed to tell you about. What I can tell you though is that there will be cameos from first film and you should watch the backgrounds for them! You'll also see Randall Boggs as an 18 year old and see how his path first crossed with Sulley and Mike.

Now that we've learnt a bit more about the story, let's talk toys!! Check out this clip from Disney Living of John Lasseter describing the new line of Monsters University toys.
Most of the toys can be found starting May 10th, 2013. I'm going to quickly highlight a few of my favorites...what am I saying? I loved all of them. The Roll-a-Scare Monsters (MRSP $6.99) were super adorable and are these little balls that pop up into characters. You can use them in the Roll-A-Scare Toxic Race Playset (MRSP $19.99) where only the first to cross the finish line will pop up! They actually created a larger version of Roll-A-Scare Sulley especially for John Goodman and I will not deny the fact that I would've loved one of those.
#MonstersUToyFair Press event featuring the hottest toys and apparel from the Monsters University movie
My Scare Pal Sulley ($39.99) is a piece of work. 3 modes of play to switch from and all you do is shake him. Press the left belly and he does something, press the right, he does something else, press both and it's another action! Scare Off Sulley ($69.99) has sound and light detection technology that allows him to sense his environment and change play modes. Get taught by the scare master and then try to scare him in return. Sulley will actually fall backwards if you succeed. Scare Off Sulley isn't available until Fall 2013. Sulley Monster Mask ($24.99) is an innovative, 100% kid powered mask. Sometimes, even big kids! Moving your jaw also allows the mask's eyebrows and lips to move creating quite a bit of fun for everyone.
#MonstersUToyFair Press event, Spin Master toys, Etnies shoes, Monsters U apparel, Monsters university
Oh, then something crazy happened. John Goodman (voice of James P. Sullivan) came out! To step back into the role of Sulley was "just like getting one of Lasseter's Hawaiian shirts as a gift!" John felt great getting back into the role and loves the family atmosphere. On similarities to college life, he said the "fact that he didn't fit in", although Sulley fit and had a cocky attitude, which was completely opposite to his own experience in college. However, they both discovered fraternities at an early age and it helped. John Goodman is confident that "anyone who knows college life will feel right at home".

Do you know what happened next? We actually got to interview Josh Silverman, Dan Scanlon, Kori Rae, and John Goodman. Here's the meat of the Q&A.
Josh Silverman (VP of Global Licensing)
Q: We caught a glance at some of the apparel so far, the 4 armed hoodie, will there be more coming out?
A: There are a lot more apparel coming out. This is Toy Fair so it's toys now, but it's only a small sampling of the great products that we have. There are 125 licensees so there are a lot of items across many categories like figures, role play and so on.

Q: Do you have a particular favorite product?
A: The mask was so great. Josh tried to focus on tech and innovation. Innovation doesn't necessarily have to be plugged in and with batteries. He loved how the mask just has facial movement...the eyebrows and mouth moves.

Q: Who is involved in product ideas?
A: John Laseter is really passionate about the process but the producers and directors are all involved.
John Goodman, Josh Silverman, Dan Scanlon, Kori Rae, #MonstersUToyFair Press event
Dan Scanlon (Director), Kori Rae (Producer), John Goodman (voice of Sulley)
Q: Scariest part of being in college?
A: Showing up and realizing you're not as good as what you thought you were.

Q: In the first movie, there was a line about how they met in fourth grade, how do you explain that?
A: They had actually thought about that line but in the end, they want to tell the right story and the best story. So in order to tell it the right way, they had to take some creative liberties. They even joked that the fourth grade line could be like monster "slang".

Q: In terms of artwork and characters, how do you make them look younger?
A: At first glance they do look younger, brighter and more vibrant colors were used.
Disney interactive and my limited edition 2013 Toy Fair Exclusive Sulley! #MonstersUToyFair
This is only the tip of the iceberg, you should've seen it all! The apparel...the shoes...I must get myself a pair! The new Disney interactive game and my very own limited edition 2013 Toy Fair Sulley figurine. I can already see it...it's going to be a Monsters University frenzy. Monsters University hits theaters June 21st!

What do you think so far? What's your favorite?

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Disclaimer: I attended the Monsters University Press Event at Toy Fair. Opinions expressed belong to Whirlwind of Surprises and are NOT influenced in any way. Please view my full disclosure, TOS, and privacy policy. Please take the time to enter my other giveaways while you're here.

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