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EXCLUSIVE: ICM Signs Wham-O Toy Company

Courtesy of Wham-o

ICM is playing games again.

The agency, which already reps classic gaming company Atari, has signed iconic toy company Wham-O, for representation.

Wham-O is the company that initially rode toy fads to success, introducing playthings such as the Frisbee, Hula Hoops and Super Ball to America in the buoyant 1950s and 1960s.

The toys have remained hugely popular over the decades, becoming part of the American culture, even as Wham-O added to their repertoire toys such as Slip 'N Slide, Hacky Sack and Boogie body boards among countless of other creations. The toys continue to sell millions every year.

Equally as interesting are the toys and games that Wham-O developed but that never took off, such as a do-it-yourself bomb shelter (created during the time when backyard bomb shelters where de rigeur) and the “instant fish” idea that consisted of selling mud with eggs from a unique species of African fish (they wouldn’t mate in America).

The company was founded by Arthur Melin and Richard Knerr, who traveled the world to find inspiration for many of the toys. The company was owned by Mattel in the recent past but is now privately owned and based in Emeryville, Calif.

ICM will now look to package Wham-O’s unique products for movies, television, music and online content in the same vein as it did with Atari. So far, the agency has guided three Atari properties into the film realm: Asteroids at Universal, Rollercoaster Tycoon with Sony Pictures Animation and Missile Command at 20th Century Fox.