Glendale, CAÂ â€“Â Star Wars: The Force AwakensÂ products are set to be unveiled in the worldâ€™s first-ever global live toy unboxing event. Unfolding over 18 hours in 15 cities and 12 countries, the event will see highlights from the range of epic merchandise revealed in a rolling New Yearâ€™s Eve style celebration featuring top digital stars from the Maker Studios network.
â€œStar WarsÂ toys have always played an important role in how our fans interact with the Saga,â€ says Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy. â€œTheyâ€™ve inspired multiple generations to relive the experience of the movies and to create new adventures all their own. These spectacularÂ Star Wars: The Force AwakensÂ products will continue that tradition.â€
Kicking off in Sydney, Australia on the morning of September 3, and continuing through Asia,Â Europe, Canada, and North & South America, selections from the new toy line will debut to global fanfare leading up to retailers around the globe opening their doors at midnight.
â€œOver the course of 18 hours, some of Maker Studiosâ€™ biggest stars will each be unboxing a new toy from theÂ Star Wars: The Force AwakensÂ product lineÂ in a different city around the world and sharing the experienceÂ liveÂ on YouTube.â€ said Leslie Ferraro, President, Disney Consumer Products. â€œWeâ€™ve seen tremendous excitement for these new products and canâ€™t wait to see the global reaction from theÂ Star WarsÂ fan community.â€
TheÂ Star WarsÂ YouTube channelÂ will host the live stream, which kicks off with the first unboxing in Sydney, Australia at 7:45 a.m. local time on Thursday, Sept. 3 (5:45 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, Sept. 2), with the grand finale at Lucasfilm in San Francisco at 8 a.m. PDT Â (11 a.m. EDT) on Thursday, Sept. 3. Each of the 15 locations will reveal a new product inspired byÂ Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
These â€œunboxingâ€ videos will feature online personalities sharing the excitement of opening the newÂ Star Wars: The Force AwakensÂ toys. Unboxing videos overall have captivated millions of Internet viewers and continue to grow in popularity.Â Eighteen of the top 100 most viewed YouTube Channels worldwide are dedicated to toys and toy unboxings. These 18 channels accounted for 8.1 billion views in Q1 2015.
â€œWeâ€™re excited to be part of this first-of-its-kind initiative,â€ said Chris M. Williams, Chief Audience Officer, Maker Studios. â€œThe unboxing world continues to expand rapidly as audiences around the world connect with digital creators who share their passions. This shared fandom helps attract billions of monthly views and consistently puts the genre at the top of the YouTube charts.â€
The global unboxing event will incorporate traditional toy unboxers such as the popularÂ EvanTubeHD, channels featuring families such asÂ Bratayley, lifehack specialists such asÂ ExpCaseros, gamers such asÂ AlexBy11Â andÂ Star WarsÂ fans from around the world, includingÂ Chris Pirillo, bringing with them a broad audience and appeal. The global line-up includes:
|COUNTRY||CITY||MAKER TALENT||LOCAL TIME 9/3||EDT|
|Hong Kong||Hong Kong||Dante Basco||12:00||00:00 9/3|
|Brazil||Rio de Janeiro||Malena010102||08:30||07:30 9/3|
|USA||New York||EvanTubeHD||08:30||08:30 9/3|
|Mexico||Mexico City||ExpCaseros||09:30||10:30 9/3|
|USA||San Francisco||Chris Pirillo||08:00||11:00 9/3|
The full schedule also is availableÂ atÂ www.StarWars.com.
Several countries will join the live stream from YouTube Spaces (Berlin, Tokyo, London), withÂ Star WarsÂ commentators Anthony Carboni and Andi Gutierrez hosting the event from the YouTube Space, Los Angeles.
Fans can tune in to watch live unboxings at home or on mobile devices, and also enjoy the latest trailers on the upcoming movie, commentary from special guests, fun product videos and demos, and footage from recentÂ Star WarsÂ events.
The global celebration culminates at midnight local time, when many retailers around the world will open their doors to fans to purchaseÂ Star Wars: The Force AwakensÂ toys, collectibles, books, apparel and more. VisitÂ starwars.comÂ for more details on participating locations. Additionally, select Disney Store locations around the world will take part.Â More details are available atÂ www.DisneyStore.com/ForceFriday.
Fans are encouraged to document their experiences around the event on social media using the hashtag #ForceFriday.