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Maybe it's just the state of the world right now, but it seems that we could use a little "holiday cheer," and it does seem like 2018 is bringing an unusually large (and welcome) amount of new holiday movies. One big surprise is The Christmas Chronicles, coming to Netflix on November 22 (perfect timing to watch with family over the Thanksgiving week) and starring Kurt Russell as Santa Claus. The story follows a brother and sister who set out to capture Santa on video and wind up getting into an adventure. Directed by Clay Kaytis (The Angry Birds Movie) and written by Matt Lieberman (2019's Addams Family), The Christmas Chronicles was produced by Chris Columbus (Home Alone, Harry Potter). Check out the first teaser below...

The legend of the Calico Critters is getting bigger. Having checked out a small preview during Toy Fair this year and then going hands-on during The Toy Insider's Sweet Suite back in July, I can tell you that the new Calico Critters Town Series is a lot of fun. The detailed playsets and figures of the new Town Series mark the biggest launch in the past 10 years for their maker, Epoch Everlasting Play. According to the toymaker,  "the new collection takes girls to the next level as they move beyond preschool play to the early school years. It features a more elegant, sophisticated styling, and a focus on the lives of more grown-up characters, who have fun jobs that children can dream of having when they grow up." Following a special pop-up experience to celebrate the launch in New York City, little fans everywhere will be excited to know that the world of Calico Critters is coming to Netflix as an all-new animated series this fall!

It's almost Halloween, and finally those long-awaited Super Monsters toys are coming! I gave you your first-look at the prototypes from Toy Fair back in March, and now Hasbro's Playskool is getting ready to unleash these super-cute monsters ahead of the Season Two Premiere on Netflix, which arrives alongside a new mini movie - Super Monsters Save Halloween - on October 5th. On a recent visit to Target, my wife and I happened to find the first piece of Super Monsters merch in the wild - a Halloween-themed t-shirt that unfortunately only came in toddler sizes. The toys, however, are recommended for ages 3 and up, but I see a bigger audience here - not just for kids, but also grownups who love Halloween and all things spooky! Take a look at some of what's up for pre-order via my associate, Amazon, right now...

'Tis the season for holiday movies! Debuting on NETFLIX on November 20th, Air Bud Entertainment, the creators of the Air Bud Golden Retriever films, the  Disney Air Buddies talking puppy adventures and PUP STAR will unwrap an all-new holiday adventure film -- PUPPY STAR CHRISTMAS. A song and dance-filled movie for the whole family, PUPPY STAR CHRISTMAS continues the fantastic adventures of the talking (and singing) canine characters that have recently gained overwhelming popularity in the PUP STAR franchise of films. These action-packed and song-filled family stories, feature an adorable cast of dogs including talking Yorkie, ‘Tiny,’ and ‘P.U.P.,’ the street-smart rapping mutt who stole Tiny’s heart.  Check out the just-released trailer and synopsis below!

For the Honor of Grayskull! A new generation will soon experience a reimagined take on the She-Ra legend when the savior of Etheria returns in DreamWorks She-Ra and The Princesses of Power!  The new animated series brings to life "a story of magic, friendship, loyalty, and an epic battle for peace." Inspired the classic Filmation animated series of the 80s (a spin-off from Mattel's iconic He-Man and the Masters of the Universe), it tells "the story of an orphan named Adora, who leaves behind her former life in the evil Horde when she discovers a magic sword that transforms her into the mythical warrior princess, She-Ra." Today comes our first official teaser trailer from the new series. Check it out below!

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The business of play is a fascinating subject, with the real-life stories behind some of our favorite toys sometimes rivaling the fictional worlds that they spawned. The Netflix Original Series The Toys That Made Us feeds that interest, and for those awaiting more episodes (season 3 is being filmed right now) there's a new documentary that's an absolute must-watch. Power of Grayskull: The Definitive History of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe is now streaming on Netflix, and as the title implies - it's an in-depth look at Mattel's iconic franchise from its origins in the early 80s through nearly four decades of highs and lows. Check out the trailer below...

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