Last week, Natalie Wreyford asked the Disney Store on Twitter why they have no Leia dolls or other products. Their response:
Currently, there are no plans for Leia products at Disney Store, Natalie. Have a wonderful day!
No so shocking, really, given the current climate. (Not to mention that the ‘have a wonderful day!’ is delightfully discordant here. How very, Disney.) They do later offer to follow up with Natalie. Perhaps they noticed the response? I first saw this on The Mary Sue, and today it’s on Jezebel. Hello, mainstream!
Given the reports from Star Wars Weekends that Her Universe stuff was selling like hotcakes down in Orlando, is it really such of a stretch for the Disney Store to dream up some Leia merchandise? As Jezebel points out, Disney is more than aware of the demand for Frozen stuff – why can’t they imagine that people may want Leia dolls, Padme dolls (dear lord, you could found an American Girl-style empire on that woman’s wardrobe alone) or even a few t-shirts?
Hell, turn some of that in-house Princess expertise to a Star Wars test run, or simply partner with Her Universe to get a few exclusive tees and dresses, bags and necklaces in stores across the country, and count your money.
Yes, Star Wars is a brand that is seen as being primarily “for boys.” But that doesn’t mean girls don’t like it. (Hello!) That doesn’t mean that girls obsessed with Elsa (or their parents and grandparents) won’t pick up a Leia shirt, an Ahsoka lightsaber, a Queen Amidala dress while they’re in your stores. This is not a zero-sum game: Crossing the aisle of the tired boy-franchise/girl-franchise gender binary means you get more money. What’s so hard to understand about that?
UPDATE: Steve Sansweet has an entry on the official blog about the Disney Store Star Wars offerings. Several comments are already addressing this issue, but if you feel the need to join them, please BE NICE. After all, Steve and the StarWars.com team are not at fault here.