DreamWorks’ Trolls franchise has quickly become an immensely popular property for young audiences, between its hit original music written and performed by the likes of Justin Timberlake and its upbeat messages about unity. It continued its success earlier this year with the record-breaking home release of Trolls World Tour. This week though, Trolls has gained attention over a Princess Poppy doll that has been deemed inappropriate by over 200,000 petitioners.
Hasbro made the decision to pull a Poppy doll from major retailers, including Target, Walmart and Amazon, after uproar began online in response to the placement of a button on the toy. The “Giggle and Sing Poppy” doll is designed to sing when you press one button on her stomach. She also makes giggling noises when she sits down upright, but this is set off by a button located between the legs of the doll.
The petition that prompted Hasbro to remove the toy criticized the retailers for promoting pedophilia and child molestation since Poppy “gasps and giggles” when the button is pushed. She called the toy “damaging” for its potential long term effects on the mental and physical health of children. Following widespread concern, Hasbro spokeswoman Julie Duffy said this to the Providence Journal via email:
This feature was designed to react when the doll was seated, but we recognize the placement of the sensor may be perceived as inappropriate. This was not intentional and we are happy to provide consumers with a replacement Poppy doll of similar value through our consumer care team. We are in the process of removing the item for purchase.
The “Giggle and Sing Poppy” doll appears to have already been removed from online purchase. Aside from the toy controversy, Trolls World Tour also made headlines in April for being the first major film to skip its theatrical release date altogether for a straight-to-VOD rental. The decision by Universal angered theater exhibitors and led AMC Theatres to threaten the Trolls studio to no longer play its films on the big screen.
Since then, AMC Theatres has struck a major deal with the studio that dramatically shifts the exclusivity period for a title in cinemas. It used to be 90 days, and now it will be just 17 under the agreement that not every theater chain is planning to abide by. Those Trolls have wrestled in some major attention in 2020, haven’t they? Make sure to tuned here on CinemaBlend for more movie news.