Thunderbirds at 50

Thunderbirds at 50 celebrations to kick off at Glastonbury Festival next year

Charles Hazelwood will lead the All Star Collective for a Thunderbirds music performance at next year;'s Glastonbury Festival. Image via Charles Hazelwood
Charles Hazelwood will lead the All Star Collective for a Thunderbirds music performance at next year;’s Glastonbury Festival. Image via Charles Hazelwood

ITV Studios Global Entertainment has announced it is launching the countdown to the 50th anniversary of Thunderbirds at next year’s Glastonbury Festival, where Charles Hazlewood’s All Star Collective will perform a set written by Barry Gray, the man behind much of the music from the original Thunderbirds series.

Since winning the European Broadcasting Union Conducting Competition in his 20’s, Charles Hazlewood has enjoyed a global and pioneering career conducting some of the world’s greatest orchestras including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam, the Gothenburg Symphony in Sweden and the Philharmonia in London. Hazlewood co-founded the award-winning South African lyric theatre company Dimpho di Kopane (London’s West End and worldwide), Golden Bear for Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival for their movie U Carmen e-Khayelitsha.

The All Star Collective comprises popular musicians such as Adrian Utley and Jason Hazeley from Portishead and Ross Hughes from Goldfrapp.

A number of  new Thunderbirds Classic licenses have also been announced, including a worldwide deal with the Titan Entertainment Group (sister company to Titan Comics and Titan Books) to produce a series of Classic Thunderbirds Titans. Targeting the collector’s market, these manga-style vinyl figures will be available through gift, high end and speciality retailers from March 2015.

The company already produces figures from Doctor Who, 2000AD, Star Trek, The Avengers and many other cult classics.

Thunderbirds Table Top Game

 

As we reported yesterday, Modiphius Entertainment is creating a Thunderbirds co-operative tabletop game devised by Martin Leacock, the man behind popular titles such as Pandemic and Forbidden Island. The game will launch in September next year.

It’s also been announced that Jumbo Games are to produce a range of Thunderbirds puzzles across the UK and Ireland, including two collector’s edition gift boxes, a Thunderbirds 50th anniversary 1000 piece puzzle and Thunderbirds Classic 1000 piece puzzle, all launching in January 2015.

The latest deals bring the roster of Classic Thunderbirds licensees to 20 in the UK and over 20 internationally, including categories such as gifting, alarm clocks and accessories, figurines and publishing. A further range of special products and limited editions based on new artwork will launch in 2015, in advance of the new Thunderbirds Are Go TV show.

“The 50-year history of the Thunderbirds Classic brand and its amazing, enduring heritage brings with it huge retail awareness and confidence, consumer loyalty and demand for new content and products that is genuine, organic and simply cannot be engineered,” commented Trudi Hayward, senior vice president, global head of merchandise at ITVS GE.

“With our sights set on the milestone anniversary and a new television series in the pipeline for 2015, I’m in no doubt that Thunderbirds presents a compelling long term commercial opportunity for our partners and it is a brand that will endure for many more decades to come.“

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John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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