We’ve slowly been getting more information on the new Bakugan project. First, an executive at the Canadian toy company Spin Master stated the project would launch in either 2018 or 2019. Then the CEO at Canadian media company Corus Entertainment confirmed their Nelvana division, Japanese animation studio TMS Entertainment and Spin Master would collaborate on the new series. Now it’s Spin Master’s CEO dishing details.
At the company’s fourth-quarter results presentation, Spin Master CEO Ronnen Harary confirmed Bakugan will be relaunched next year. He stated that the seven-year hiatus between the original and this series was integral to ensure a new generation of kids would be able to experience the franchise. To appeal to this younger audience, the show’s format has been retooled. Rather than a single 22-minute story in each episode, a new Bakugan episode will contain two 11-minute ones.
The new toy line, which features “advanced innovation,” will be revealed to investors this spring, before the brand launches globally across television, toys and online in 2019. Harary also stated that Spin Master is looking into the possibility of launching a movie within the “next few years.” He later added that Asia will be a key market for the relaunch.
There’s a lot to digest here. While the 11-minute episode format is becoming increasingly common in children’s animation, it has historically been limited to western animated shows. Is the new Bakugan going to be animated in the west? The involvement of TMS Entertainment suggested otherwise, but who knows. The news of a movie might get fans excited, but it’s important to remember that in 2008, Universal Pictures announced their intent to launch a live-action feature based on the property. That never happened.
Last month, Spin Master filed a lawsuit against two Chinese toy manufacturers alleging that they violated the Canadian company’s Bakugan patents.