While supporters were sure that Black Panther would smash the box office, toy manufacturers felt quite the opposite. According to the New York Post, several companies underestimated the Marvel/Disney film’s impact and now has to deal with a short supply and high demand for toys inspired by the action-packed movie.
Global Toy Experts chief executive, Richard Gottlieb, said while “the African-American community was very excited” for Black Panther’s release, stores were taken aback by the “broad public demand.” Bob Iger, Disney’s CEO, said consumers should expect a new influx “in the next few months.”
Basic Fun’s CEO, Jay Foreman, said factory workers in China are putting in “overtime” to churn out the products on a rapid basis. “We are scheduling the product to ship on the fastest container ships to help make it in time,” Foreman said to the Post.
The popularity of Black Panther isn’t reserved for your local toy stores’ shelves, though. Since its February release, the Ryan Coogler-directed feature has surpassed the Titanic, sparked rumors of a sequel, and broke Saudi Arabia’s ban on cinemas that lasted for 35 years. The superhero reel stars Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Daniel Kaluuya, Winston Duke, Michael B. Jordan, Letitia Wright, and Chadwick Boseman, who recently hosted Saturday Night Live (Apr. 7).