Although we have written several posts about the new (and highly controversial) LEGO Friends theme, I haven’t yet posted the actual press-release from LEGO. You might have read it already on other LEGO Forums, but I thought to post it here as well, as it includes some interesting details; like how LEGO came up with the LEGO Friends theme and why they have decided to introduce a new type of LEGO minifigure.
So far we don’t know for sure how little girls will respond to LEGO friends, but we do know what many adults think; they will keep the hair-pieces from LEGO Friends – as they are compatible with regular LEGO minifigures – and discard the rest of the poor girls. Huw Millington from Brickset came up with this funny LEGO-vignette to illustrate the point:
Anyhow, here is the LEGO Friends press-release, the first video commercial and some other details. As always, you are welcome to share your thoughts in the comment section below the post.
LEGO GROUP DECLARES NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION FOR 2012: DELIVER MEANINGFUL PLAY EXPERIENCES TO GIRLS WORLDWIDE WITH NEW LEGO FRIENDS
Company brings classic construction play to the girls’ aisle with first-of- its-kind LEGO mini-doll figure, three new brick colors and detailed interiors that reflect four years of research in play needs of girls
BILLUND, Denmark (December 19, 2011) – The LEGO Group, the world’s leading construction toy brand, today announced LEGO Friends, a new play theme that tailors the iconic LEGO construction experience especially to girls ages five and up. LEGO Friends delivers on a girl’s desire for realistic role-play, creativity, and a highly-detailed, character-based world with the core values of LEGO building.
The LEGO Friends collection of 23 products ranges in price from $5.99 to $99.99 USD and the first 14 will be available for sale in select toy, discount merchandise, specialty and online stores beginning December 26, 2011 in the United Kingdom and January 1, 2012 in the United States. A rolling International launch will follow in the spring, with the remaining nine sets launching in the summer months.
“We felt it was time to test assumptions that girls aren’t interested in building and to breathe fresh air into a toy category filled mostly with pre-fabricated play experiences for girls”, said Jørgen Vig Knudstorp, CEO, LEGO Group.
“We focused on creating a play experience centered on the joy of creation, while heeding the way girls naturally build and play. We are incredibly proud of the solution we deliver with LEGO Friends, and are resolved to build this platform for years to come.”
LEGO Friends is the first 100 percent LEGO building experience fully optimized to girls’ tastes and interests. Thousands of girls and their mothers worldwide participated in intensive research that validated the desire for more beauty, realistic details, accessories and interior building and role play opportunities in a LEGO offering.
INTRODUCING THE LEGO MINI-DOLL FIGURE
Anchored by the introduction of a new mini-doll figure, LEGO Friends introduces a new LEGO minifigure platform tailored to girls’ requests for a more realistic, relatable and stylized figure. Designed to the same scale of the classic LEGO minifigure, the mini-doll figure stands roughly 5 millimeters taller than its minifigure sibling, yet features similar constructability, shares the iconic “claw” hand to hold the same accessories, can wear the same hair and headpieces, and is compatible with all LEGO building sets. A total of 29 different mini-doll figures will be introduced in 2012.
“LEGO Friends is one of the most researched LEGO projects ever and is a culmination of years of anthropological research with girls around the world to understand what they expect from a construction toy”, said Nanna Ulrich Gudum, senior creative director, LEGO Group. “In talking with girls and their moms, we understand that girls really want a LEGO offering that mirrors what the boys experience, but in a way that fulfills their unique desire for remodeling and redesign, combined with realistic themes in community and friendship.”
“Unlike previous LEGO toys for girls, LEGO Friends, at its core, does not apologize for being a construction toy and delivers, for the first time, a building experience in the same scale as our classic offerings”, Nanna Ulrich Gudum continued. “What LEGO Friends does differently is deliver the beauty, details, accessories, real world themes and need for strong interior play that the research revealed would make all the difference for girls ages 5 and up.”
WELCOME TO HEARTLAKE CITY
The LEGO Friends story centers on the everyday lives and personalities of five girls in a fictional hometown called Heartlake City. Each of the friends—Olivia, Mia, Andrea, Stephanie and Emma—has a distinct personality and interests, such as animals, performing arts, invention and design, that are reflected in the models. Building sets reflect different parts of town where the girls’ adventures take place—downtown, suburbs, beach, camping grounds and mountains.
THE LEGO FRIENDS PRODUCT COLLECTION
Half of the launch collection includes construction sets themed to introduce girls to each of the “Friend’s” personalities, including: Stephanie’s Outdoor Bakery, Emma’s Splash Pool, Andrea’s Stage, Olivia’s Inventor’s Workshop, Stephanie’s Pet Patrol, Mia’s Puppy House and Emma’s Design Studio. Girls are also invited to construct the Friends’ favorite locations in Heartlake City with larger building sets, including: Stephanie’s Cool Convertible, Olivia’s Tree House, Heartlake Dog Show, Butterfly Beauty Shop, City Park Café, Heartlake Vet, and Olivia’s House. The remaining nine sets launching later in the year deliver the same range in price and theme.
IMMERSIVE BRAND EXPERIENCE
Children will be immersed in the new world they can create with LEGO Friends through a variety of brand experiences planned for 2012. In addition to providing product information, the LEGO Friends website will allow children to explore the personalities of each of the five Friends and the different spots in Heartlake City. The site will also feature an avatar creator, mini-movies, games, video building tips, story extensions, contests, news and an events calendar. Also planned are Interactive building events and road shows, promotions, magazines, digital content, a mini movie, in-store experiences, books and more. Check www.LEGOFriends.com for more information.
NEW LEGO FRIENDS PRODUCT FEATURES
- LEGO Mini-Doll Figure: tailored to girls’ requests for a more realistic, relatable and stylized figure, the new mini-doll figure stands roughly 5 millimeters taller than its minifigure sibling, yet features similar constructability, shares the iconic “claw” hand to hold the same accessories, can wear the same hair and headpieces, and is compatible with all LEGO building sets. 29 different mini-doll figures will be introduced in 2012.
- New Colors: three new LEGO element colors—two blues and a lavender—and three new deco colors—two greens and another purple—were added to create LEGO Friends.
- Rich World: the LEGO Friends story centers on the everyday lives and personalities of five girls—Olivia, Mia, Andrea, Stephanie and Emma—in Heartlake City. Each girl’s personality and interests are reflected in the collection.
So what do you think? Will you get LEGO Friends? Let us know! Also, here are some other posts on the LEGO Friends line you may like:
- 2012 LEGO Sets: LEGO Friends
- 2012 LEGO Sets: LEGO Friends Pictures!
- 2012 LEGO Sets: LEGO Friends More Pictures!
- LEGO Friends vs. Regular LEGO Minifigs Comparison
- LEGO Friends – LEGO’s Billion Dollar Girl
- LEGO Friends Undergo Plastic Surgery
- Dear LEGO… My Opinion on LEGO Friends
- LEGO Friends Available Now! (yes, they are on the shelves!)