"The Rudolph DVD is often sold in a multi-pack that is marketed as the Christmas Classics, but that branding never crosses over into the licensing program," he says.
Says Jeff Frank, artistic director, First Stage: "The Rudolph TV special was conceived as a musical, so the adaptation was totally organic."The characters from the Rudolph TV special have a tremendously broad appeal and represent an important way for our clients to connect emotionally with their consumers during the holiday season," says Brent Poer, president, Liquid Thread, agency for Microsoft."It's the content and stories that matter–like the Rudolph campaign–and that people value and share." Flom says that the special's characters do not co-mingle with other characters from other entertainment either.In addition to working on various aspects of licensing for "Saturday Night Live," Flom was part of the team that assembled and enhanced the libraries that were aggregated and first sold to Golden Books in 1996, now owned by Dream Works Animation following the acquisition of Classic Media last year.With respect to Rudolph, Dream Works Animation has the rights to distribute the existing special on television and on video, but its rights do not include brand licensing or new production.Flom believes that Rudolph is more than an entertainment brand and is a property that calls for a non-traditional approach.
"Rudolph should not feel like it is just another business to the consumer, so we try to be invisible handlers," says Flom.
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Flom's daughter Danielle, who has been attending Licensing Expo since she was 15-years-old, focuses on products and creative asset development.
"Seasonal properties have inherent limitations and need to be managed very efficiently," says Flom.
"That is one of the reasons why Rudolph is best managed outside of an entertainment company or corporate environment where it might be perceived as too commercial, and the value might be undercut if it is perceived by the consumer as part of a portfolio of properties." According to Flom, Character Arts does not permit Rudolph to pitch or directly endorse products or services, but works closely with advertisers to try to find ways to work within this framework–humor is often a solution.