Toy Fair 2011 – London Olympia

Today, Tuesday 25th January, was press day at the 58th Annual Toy Fair. The event, hosted by the British Toy & Hobby Association, is the place for manufacturers, buyers and the press to see the latest innovations in the toy industry.

I had a very enjoyable, productive and busy day and it was great to put faces to names/voices/emails that I’d spoken to over the past months.

Work-wise we managed to speak to everyone we needed to so I was also spotting movie-related toys and collectables. In particular I was very impressed with LEGO. Not only did they have life-size LEGO models of Darth Vader, C-3PO, Harry Potter and others, but they also have some very exciting new additions to their Star Wars range.

Unfortunately, we were unable to take photos of the new products but let me tell you that they will appeal to everyone: 7-year-old kids, Star Wars fans and the adult LEGO collector. On the subject of LEGO – a fun fact from the BTHA – there are 915,103,765 different ways of combining six eight-stud LEGO bricks of the same colour!

I was also quite taken with the Star Images stand. On display was a large collection of highly-detailed action figures from Edward Cullen to Jack Skellington.

These action figures would appeal to the adult collector and here’s another fun fact from the BTHA – over £230 million is spent on toys purchased for people over the age of 18. Now that I definitely can believe. I could have quite happily purchased the majority of the toys I saw today!

34 toys in 11 categories took home awards for the Toy Fair Best New Toys for 2011. Mattel’s Jet Pack Buzz Lightyear scooped Toy of the Year.

Film-related toys making an appearance in the awards included a win for LEGO for their Hogwarts Castle in the Construction category, a win for Corinthian Marketing with their Star Wars Slingers in the Pocket Money category and a win for Hasbro with their Electronic Lightsaber in the Role-Play category.

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