Producing card sets based on movie properties is always a risk for manufacturers, but Topps officials are brimming with confidence about the prospects for its latest entertainment property.
Terminator Salvation arrives in theaters Memorial Day weekend and promises to be one of this year’s most successful films. Christian Bale takes over the role of John Connor in what will be the first of three new Terminator films.
“What we find so appealing about this license is its phenomenally successful history,” said Ira Friedman, VP of publishing for Topps. “This is far more than just another movie tie-in. This is the re-engineering of a very powerful established franchise that started in 1984. It encompassed three films that did more than a $1 billion combined, a TV show on FOX, dozens of comic books, video games, collectible toys, and of course, trading cards. It has a long, well-established history.”
Friedman said Topps was in the process of finalizing the list of autograph signers for the set, but he did say costumes worn in the film by some of the primary actors have been secured for use on Relic cards. A variety of 1-of-1 sketch cards will also be inserted into packs.
Producers of the newest film are hoping to receive a PG-13 rating (the previous ones were rated R), which would likely attract a broader and younger audience. Warner Bros. will be spending an estimated $100 million to market the movie, Friedman said.
“This license is far more than just another movie,” Friedman said. “It’s an ongoing intellectual property that we think is going to be inspiring lots of interest on the merchandising side.”
The set will arrive in hobby shops prior to the film’s release, Friedman said, and then be offered at mass market retail stores about the same time as the movie’s debut.