Warner Bros. Awards Harry Potter Toy License to Mattel

Posted on February 11, 2000

Harry Potter Warner Bros. Worldwide Consumer Products has signed the much-coveted licensing agreement for the literary phenomenon Harry Potter with Mattel, Inc., making Mattel the worldwide master toy licensee for the literary characters as well as for the upcoming feature films from Warner Bros. Pictures. The Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone book is currently being developed as a theatrical film for Warner Bros. Pictures.

"Harry Potter has cast a spell over kids of all ages, and we have been very strategic in choosing our master toy licensing partner," said Dan Romanelli, President, Warner Bros. Worldwide Consumer Products. "We believe that Mattel's vision and commitment to the property will push the envelope, with both technology and innovation, outside the realm of a traditional toy line."

Warner Bros. Worldwide Consumer Products gained all worldwide licensing and merchandising rights for the Harry Potter children's book series as part of an overall deal when Warner Bros. Pictures signed with author J.K. Rowling. The deal includes development of two films based on the first two books of the series -- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Mattel's worldwide toy licensing agreement involves the first two Harry Potter books and theatrical films.

"The launch of Harry Potter products will be a worldwide effort. Our intent is to judiciously roll out the product and not flood the market," said Romanelli. "We're looking to support the literary and film property as a long term franchise. Strategies and timing will be determined on a market-by-market basis. In the U.S. and U.K. (where the series first gained its loyal following), the product launch will be concurrent."