Henson taps topper for toy unit

Segal to relaunch consumer products division

The Jim Henson Co. has added a key puppeteer to its ranks, tapping Melissa Segal to relaunch the company’s consumer products division.

Segal, who founded licensing and product development agency Brandolution, will serve as senior VP, global consumer products, a new post.

Brandolution, which Segal founded in 2006, has been handling certain elements of Henson’s consumer products efforts, namely for two of its newest series, the preschooler-targeting “Sid the Science Kid” and upcoming animated “Dinosaur Train,” both on PBS.

Company said its new slate of TV and film properties encouraged it to relaunch the inhouse arm. So did the fact that a longterm consumer products deal with HIT Entertainment, which involves most of its classic brands such as “Fraggle Rock” and “Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas,” ends in April.

Segal, who reports to Peter Schube, prexy and chief operating officer of the Jim Henson Co., will oversee new shows including “The Skrumps,” an animated series based on the collectible toy line; as well as the company’s “Labyrinth,” “The Dark Crystal” and “Farscape” fantasy brands; and classic properties. Rights to the Muppets are now owned by Disney.

She will manage deals for its movies, which include a feature-length “Fraggle Rock” pic, as well as redo of “Dark Crystal” and “Happytime Murders,” based on its more adult-themed “Puppet Up” stage show.

First products for “Sid” will come out later this year.

As part of Segal’s hire, Brandolution will be renamed Brandolution JHC and become a banner inside the Jim Henson Co. In addition to Henson’s properties, it will work with outside clients.

Before forming Brandolution in 2006, Segal spent eight years at Disney Consumer Products, working on “Winnie the Pooh,” “101 Dalmatians” and “Toy Story,” rising to the post of VP of the U.S. toy business.

She also served as senior VP for “Mommy and Me,” before it was bought by DIC Entertainment.

In 2003, she co-founded Evergreen Concepts, an indie licensing agency which repped Build-A-Bear Workshop, Alvin & the Chipmunks and Little Golden Books, among others. She sold the company to form Brandolution.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Scene News from Variety