Entertainment One is in the process of ‘figuring out which of Hasbro’s brands to bring to life,’ the company has stated following the toymaker’s $3.8bn acquisition of the content producer-distributor at the end of last year.
Speaking at UK Screenings this month, Pancho Mansfield, eOne’s president of global scripted programming, said that Hasbro has a ‘treasure chest’ of IP that the company is looking closely at as it works out what out of the firm’s some 1,500 brands will translate well to screen.
The obvious choices have already been highlighted, with the likes of Dungeons & Dragons, GI Joe, Power Rangers, Action Man, Furby, and Transformers among them.
“We’re just wrapping our arms around it and we’re excited to begin,” Mansfield told Deadline. “We’re going to continue doing what we’re doing and we have this great treasure chest of IP and worlds to bring to life.”
Much of the noise around Hasbro’s acquisition has – until now – been focused on eOne’s slate of pre-school properties such as Peppa Pig and PJ Masks, giving Hasbro a firmer foothold in the competitive yet highly lucrative pre-school content sector.
For a number of weeks, questions have been left hanging over what this meant for the future of eOne’s scripted drama output.
Noel Hedges, executive VP of acquisitions for eOne has now gone some way to alleviate those fears. He told Variety: “Drama is a huge part of eOne’s business and Hasbro bought the business not to shrink it, but expand it.
“If anything, eOne is now supported by a very complementary business. We will support Hasbro’s in-house IP and now find ways of bringing that to screen internally. Hasbro wants eOne to thrive, and from a distribution point of view, they want us to be the portal through which we can take that content to the world.
“Even if it’s a kids’ brand, it could be integrated into a cross-generational family offering. Hasbro is a family business but there is a lot there that isn’t just in the kids’ space.