12:40pm PT by Graeme McMillan
Disney Unveils Plans to Bring Marvel's 'Avengers' to the Kitchen
If there's one thing audiences think about when they think about Marvel Entertainment's Tony Stark, it's the dangerous combination of exciting new technology and a character who drinks too much — so, obviously, it only makes sense that the world will soon see an Iron Man minifridge, right?
The unusual merchandise is just part of a new push for Marvel's superhero properties, with Disney Consumer Products announcing what it calls "one of its biggest-ever licensing programs" around the upcoming Avengers: Age of Ultron, in addition to increased focus on Spider-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy and other Marvel characters.
In a statement, Disney Consumer Products executive vp global licensing Josh Silverman said that Marvel "has become a super-brand in its own right thanks to its outstanding universe of aspirational, relatable characters and the incredibly broad appeal of not only its movies but its comics, books, apps, games and TV series, that continually deliver epic storytelling with action, heart and humor," and that Disney plans to "build on this huge momentum and the incredible buzz around the next Avengers movie with a series of product initiatives appealing to fans of all ages."
That means extending agreements with existing partners including Hasbro, Lego, Funko and others, while also expanding the focus of licensing opportunities beyond the norm. In addition to home goods, Disney has specifically identified "a dedicated focus on action sports and fashion-forward apparel" for the Spider-Man brand, and "new opportunities for product lines with more sophisticated and edgy fashion style, as well as new collector-focused opportunities, aimed at teen and adult fans" for Daredevil and the other Marvel properties being developed as Netflix programming.
Additionally, Disney intends to roll out Marvel-branded food and sporting goods to promote an active and healthy lifestyle for kids, with Sage Fruit, Conagra granola bars and Chobani already on board that campaign.
Quite where the prospect of an Avengers-branded waffle maker fits into that plan remains to be seen, but it appears that Earth's Mightiest Heroes will be available for any and all of your dietary needs — or, apparently, almost every other possible concern — in the upcoming months.