Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 3, 2012 01:27 PM
Fresh off her global Olympics cameo reading an excerpt of “Peter Pan” to the bazillion viewers who gaped at the London 2012 Games Opening Ceremony, author J.K. Rowling now gets to turn her attention back to her own magic-fueled kid-lit fantasy that ended up spanning a few generations: Harry Potter.
Rowling earlier this year announced she's writing a book for adults, her first foray beyond the Potter Empire that has kept her busy since Harry hit bookshelves back in 1997. Moving on from Potter publisher Bloomsbury with the move, Rowling stated, "The freedom to explore new territory is a gift that Harry’s success has brought me, and with that new territory it seemed a logical progression to have a new publisher. I am delighted to have a second publishing home in Little, Brown, and a publishing team that will be a great partner in this new phase of my writing life."
The last Potter book came out in June of 2007, and the last movie last year, but Rowling can't quit Harry — not just yet.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 2, 2012 04:02 PM
Just because rapper Ludacris has let loose on such NSFW songs as “Move Bitch” and “Get the F--- Back” doesn’t mean the guy is not safe for your family. In fact, the 34-year-old native of Champagne, Illinois, would like to be part of your family’s life if you’ve got young kids.
The man who is known as Chris Bridges in the rest of his life is relaunching his interactive website for kids, karmasworld.com, that he designed with his 10-year-old daughter, Karma. The site will feature 11 new tunes and artwork from Bridges.
The focus of the website is teaching elementary-school kids “about math, science and geography as well as ethical and social issues like manners, honesty and kindness, through original songs, games and stories,” a press release states.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 1, 2012 02:02 PM
Update: This story has been updated with statements from the Nelson Mandela Foundation and Company B, which holds the license for 466/64 Fashion in North America — click here for our update.
Nelson Mandela spent 27 years in prison, many of them wearing the ID number 466/64 on Robben Island, which is not far from Cape Town, South Africa. Along the way, he became a symbol for democracy and the anti-apartheid movement, and is now upheld worldwide as an elder statesman.
That prison ID number, though, has ended up sinking Mandela into the world of crass commercialism. 466/64 Fashion is a relatively new fashion line (it just launched in the U.S. on July 18th — Mandela's 94th birthday) that had sold itself as either being overseen by Mandela or at least involving him along with claiming that it would give some of its proceeds to a Mandela charity (see its Facebook banner, above).
The word from Mandela's reps, however, is that he has nothing to do with any of it — and did not spend 27 years in jail for a fashion label.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on July 11, 2012 03:14 PM
Americans are known as a forgiving people. In the latest test of that maxim, Michael Vick plans to launch his own clothing label, with the backing of celebrity clothing-line mogul Ruby Azrak and designs commissioned "to Vick's specifications."
It could be said that the star quarterback long ago put his past as a criminal dog abuser behind him. Nike last year picked up the endorsement deal with him that it previously had dropped, and Fuse Science started one. The Philadelphia Eagles committed as much as $100 million to him in a new contract. And he has been accepted on the speaking circuit by the Humane Society and other animal-welfare causes.
But Vick himself previously set the bar for complete restoration of his personal brand at the point where he could launch a successful apparel line. "Just like when you envision yourself having a shoe as a young kid, you also envision yourself going a step further and having a clothing line," he said, according to the Wall Street Journal. He also told WSJ he thinks his brand has been restored up to 75 percent of its previous status.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on June 27, 2012 02:11 PM
It may be only a matter of time before Tim Tebow's sustained reputation as the NFL's "good guy" runs smack into his growing chops as an underwear model, like some unfortunate tailback trying to run through a hulking defensive lineman. But don't count on that happening any time soon.
For now, as he readies for the next buzz-worthy chapter in his short but colorful professional-football career and practices for his first season with the New York Jets, Tebow and his most notable corporate sponsor, Jockey International, are trying to have it both ways.
In previous campaigns, they have been fully willing to flaunt his considerable physique to ply Jockey underwear. But the star and the brand have been careful not to do so in ways that would undermine Tebow's devotion to personal chastity and his Christian faith.
That was the case again when Jockey asked Tebow to kick off its "Hot City Cool Down" campaign at a fashion show in Orlando. Tebow, dressed in a Jockey t-shirt and jeans, emceed the affair while male and female models showed off Jockey undergarments — and he left the modeling to the professionals.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 26, 2012 01:01 PM
The fever pitch of Linsanity has died down a bit since mid-February, when every move New York Knicks point guard Jeremy Lin made was scrutinized and revered. His spot on his brother’s couch was ballyhooed as the mark of a man who overly impressed with himself and his status as an NBA player. His entire manner was an antidote to the general self-promoting boorishness that is generally expected from his fellow NBA players.
Plus, the guy went to Harvard! And helped build the Asian market even further and bring in more bucks for the sport! Not to mention being the very model of a modern Asian American. What else could the league ask for?
A few others, of course, saw Lin’s rise as a big opportunity to make some money for themselves as well and went ahead and filed for the “Linsanity” trademark. As we recently noted, Lin — who is not yet confirmed to be returning as a Knick — did the same in an attempt to keep himself from potentially seeing his own name on hot pads and t-shirts and ice-cream flavorings (and, naturally, make a few dollars down the road as well).Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 15, 2012 02:12 PM
David Cassidy has probably sung “C’mon Get Happy” about seven zillion times since he joined the cast of The Partridge Family in 1970 and became a teen idol at the age of 20. That doesn’t mean that the now 62-year-old is pleased with the show or its producers. In fact, he’s furious.
After all the T-shirts, lunch boxes, posters, games, dolls, trading cards and other collectibles with his picture on them, not to mention the years of dodging screaming fans, Cassidy says he only made $15,000 in merchandising fees. He’s been on a long legal battle to get some of that dough, which could equal around $10 million, according to a press release.
An L.A. Superior Court judge is currently considering if he will hear the case against Sony in front of a jury. Cassidy isn't the only disgruntled '70s TV star, either. Some of the cast members from Happy Days are also suing CBS over their cut (or lack thereof) in merchandising sales related to the show.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 6, 2012 11:16 AM
Lance Armstrong has beaten cancer. For seven straight years, he beat every top cyclist in the world in the Tour de France. He’s also beaten every drug test he’s ever taken. But he coudn't beat Big Tobacco.
In tandem with the American Cancer Society, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and others, Armstrong was a proponent Proposition 29, a proposed $1-a-pack hike in taxes on cigarettes that would have raised millions of dollars for cancer research projects. Except that Californians narrowly voted it down on Tuesday. Naturally, the proposed tax was vigorously opposed by tobacco companies, "who dramatically outspent" supporters of the bill as Forbes notes.
Armstrong leveraged his personal brand and platform as a healthy living advocate (via Livestrong) to help lobby California to hike up its cigarette prices, even changing his Twitter avatar to the "Yes on 29" logo. The Golden State is generally thought of as bastion of liberal politics so it would seem that tobacco would have been a target long ago. But California has lagged behind other states in hiking up the prices that consumers have to pay for their smokes, according to CBS News.Continue reading...