Find out what the Toy Box is about!
Want to know what the new show on ABC The Toy Box is about? Me too! Oh, wait it was me that went on a trip to Pixar to learn more about this show. I have the info you’re looking for. The Toy Box reminds me of a fun, family tv event that you’ll want to bring your kids in to watch weekly. I would say it’s similar to Shark Tank but it’s not. The only similarities are that an inventor brings in an item to show in front of a panel of judges hoping for approval. But there are no mean judges hoping to buy into your product. Just a small group of toy industry panelist and if the inventors get approval and make it through them then they face the kid judges. I laughed so much during the program. My kids and family will be sitting down tonight to watch the first episode. You’re going to love it. Don’t forget to watch it on Fridays at 8/7 CST on ABC.
While at Pixar I was able to be in on the interviews with Jen Tan who is in Pixar toy development. Check out what I learned from her.
Interview with Jen Tan Pixar toy development
Jen talks about the Toy Box. 7 questions you have about the Toy Box, toys and Cars 3 answered here!
When will we see who the winner is on The Toy Box?
Jen: After we see the 7 episodes the 8th is all about who is going to be the winner. That night they pick the winner and the toy will be available the night it airs at Toys R Us online and the next day in stores.
What do you look for in a toy?
Jen: I always look for a toy that has multiple uses. Not a one trick pony. Something that allows them to be creative and have a lot of fun. Classic, simple toys that seem to do that. A lot of these toy makers appearing on this show are classic toys that are fun. Many of our inventors do sell their toys already at mom and pop shops.
How did you get hired for the job? What is your background?
Jen: They reached out to Pixar and asked if I could be a person to be a judge on the show the Toy Box.
The judges see the toys for the first time when the inventors bring their toys in. My background is in toys. I went to FIT in New York and there’s only 2 or 3 in the country with a toy designing degree. Jen has a background in toy design.
Were you nervous about being on TV?
Jen: Yes, I wish I had a makeup and wardrobe team every morning. This wasn’t like anything I have ever done before but it was fun. So there was no audience just the crew. It’s shot in New York and they did it in about 2 weeks. Production wrapped last summer. I really enjoyed doing the show.
What was your favorite toy of all time?
Jen: My favorite toy of all time is Speak and Spell and plush stuffed animals.
How long do you have to start the process for a toy in a movie?
Jen: It takes 18 months to get a toy to store. So for Cars 3 we look at the film parts that they have ready about 18 months before so that we can get a product on the shelf when the movie comes out. We work hand in hand with the movie studios because a lot of times things changes.
Any Cars 3 toys coming out?
Jen: There’s a lot of Cars 3 products. They’re doing the RC toy. Spero’s working on something for Cars 3 and will be a cool diecast. Feature vehicles from the crazy 8 segment that will be coming out. Wooden toys with KidKraft for Cars 3 too. There’s some diecast from the Legends of Racing too. They’ll be available in the assortment sets. There’s a crazy 8 playset too. Fun! Cars 3 toys will be available 6 weeks before. You should see some of it trickling in around May 1.
Check out the Toy Box trailer and meet the Judges and the Mentors
Eric Stonestreet From ‘Modern Family’ Hosts The Toy Box on ABC
What this week’s episode on The Toy Box is about?
“Episode 101” – The premiere of the ultimate toy-competition series, “The Toy Box,” airing on FRIDAY, APRIL 7 (8:00–9:00 p.m. EDT), on The ABC Television Network, features five passionate amateur inventors who have put their hearts, souls and a lot of money into their unique toy concepts with hopes of impressing the mentors and making it to The Toy Box where young, no-nonsense judges determine if they will earn the chance to compete for the grand prize.
This week’s toy inventions include:
Arya Ball – a reimagining of the soccer ball with special surprises inside
Inventor: Babak from Carlsbad, California
Wacky Worm Racing Game – a racing game where players dressed in a worm costume race to cross the finish line
Inventor: Cedric from Orlando, Florida
Niya Doll – a multicultural doll collection who sings and speaks in multiple languages
Inventor: Darla from Columbia, South Carolina
Swurfer – a backyard swing inspired by a surfboard
Inventor: Rob from Charleston, South Carolina
Party Cannon – a party game that launches toys, prizes, and candy
Inventor: Rick from Miami Springs, Florida
In each episode of “The Toy Box,” inventors present their toy concepts to a group of mentors that include Dylan’s Candy Bar owner Dylan Lauren, toy guru Jim Silver and Pixar creative director of Consumer Products, Jen Tan. If the toy maker gets past the mentors, they will move on to The Toy Box where a panel of young, no-holds-barred judges that include Sophia Grace Brownlee (“The Ellen Degeneres Show”), Aalyrah Caldwell (“Uncle Buck”), Toby Grey (“The Unexpected John Cena Prank”) and Noah Ritter (“The Ellen Degeneres Show”) decide which toy moves on to the finals and eventually crowned the winner. That winning toy will be sold exclusively at Toys“R”Us® after the series finale.
“The Toy Box” is from Mattel, Hudsun Media and Electus. Michael Rourke, Chris Grant, Drew Buckley, Richard Dickson, Catherine Balsam-Schwaber, Julia Pistor, Susan House and Hamilton South are executive producers.
Twitter: @ TheToyBoxABC