Animation and licensing industry veteran Marc Harrington announced the launch of Lucky Helmet, a new business focused on assisting creators, producers and other intellectual property owners, with commercialization strategies on existing brands as well as with the development of new content-based franchises.
Lucky Helmet, headquartered in Los Angeles, CA, will work with property owners in setting-up procedures, securing the right merchandising-licensing partners, expanding beneficial collaborations and building communities around their original characters and content – all of which support improved awareness and longer-term brand success.
“The landscape, for kids’ content especially, has changed dramatically in the past few years; discoverability has become a huge challenge,” said Harrington. “Property owners cannot depend on distribution partners to build their brand, and while retail will surely return in force, rights holders are going to need to take more responsibility than ever before for attracting consumers directly, and for engaging with fans.”
Additionally, Lucky Helmet will work with artists and creators in the earliest stages of brand development to integrate play patterns, wish fulfillment and other elements that can make a property more attractive for toy and gaming companies to work with, while also making it more accessible to enthusiasts.
Harrington added, “Most importantly, an authentic voice and an emotional connection with the story and characters must come across – but, when you have that right, there are certainly decisions that can be made, and elements that can be incorporated, in order to improve opportunities for consumer product programs and for the range of a property’s appeal.”
The four-time Academy Award nominated animation studio, Cartoon Saloon, has signed Lucky Helmet to consult on licensing and merchandising opportunities based on its original IP, including the animated feature film Wolfwalkers, the Puffin Rock series, Puffin Rock – The Movie and Silly Sundays series.
Wolfwalkers premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival to enthusiastic reviews. The film opens theatrically in the U.S. on November 13 through GKIDS, and will begin streaming on Apple TV+ on December 11.
Puffin Rock – The Movie is based on the beloved preschool series, which has received an International Emmy Award nomination, two Kidscreen Awards and a Royal Television Award. The film will be released in the fall of 2021.
Silly Sundays is currently in pre-production and is slated for release in 2022.
Brian Tyrrell, General Manager, Brand Development with Cartoon Saloon, stated: “Marc has been very helpful in setting-up processes for our ancillary rights business and for introducing Cartoon Saloon to highly respected potential partners. We look forward to working with Lucky Helmet on a number of upcoming projects.”
Prior to Lucky Helmet, Harrington developed and managed toy integrated animation projects with Dentsu Entertainment USA, where he executive produced the original animated series Mega Man: Fully Charged and Monsuno and where he distributed and licensed Japanese originated series LBX and Yo-Kai Watch (all of which had global Master Toy programs attached). Prior to Dentsu, Harrington was responsible for branding initiatives, merchandising and other partnerships for Genuine Character, Marvel Entertainment and Paramount Pictures.