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What Could Have Been / Toys

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What Could Have Been with toys...

  • Mel Birnkrant has done a ton of toyline pitches that could be listed in this category on his YouTube page, most notably the second wave of Outer Space Men, a line called Invasion that is Exactly What It Says on the Tin, a neat take on the Rock Em Sock Em Robots concept called Gladiators, cool little bobbing toys called Its Alive, the aborted Maxx FX figures, and most notably his Creatures line, which sorta got produced but has a lot of cool figures that never got made. All so damned cool, a shame that none of them were ever made.
  • While most Transformers fans know about the unproduced Unicron prototypes from the G1 and Beast Wars Neo lines, you probably don't know about this weird guy over here, apparently a prototype for some sort of spinoff for Transformers we know nothing of.
    • There are an incredible amount of abandoned Transformers concepts and individual toys. While the media examples are on the Western Animation page, there's a whole category on the TFWiki called "Things That Don't Exist" featuring numerous cancelled toys. The Generations book also features a number of rejected Transformers concepts.
    • There was going to be a transforming Armored Personnel Carrier around the time of Transformers: Generation 2, crossing over with G.I. Joe.
    • The 2001 Transtech toy line would have introduced Transformers with a techno organic appearance.
    • The Nightbeat figure from the 2013 Thrillin' 30 toyline was originally going to be a retool of the Jazz figure from the 2011 Reveal the Shield toyline. As back then Hasbro had money issues, that mold was too expensive to rerelease and Nightbeat was changed into a retool of the Bumblebee figure from the first wave of the line.
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    • "Transformers Prime: Shattered Glass" was an unrealised proposal for an e-HOBBY exclusive toyline. As the title implies, it would have been a Transformers: Shattered Glass version of Transformers: Prime, with redecos of Gora, Gul and Zori (possibly) filling the inexperienced bystander roles held by Jack, Miko, and Raf in the main Prime universe.
  • Everything on this list and this list counts for this.
    • Speaking of unreleased Alien figures, a ToyFair article on Stan Winston Creations' then-upcoming Aliens figures mentioned a figure that was scrapped (for obvious reasons) that would've had an actual Biggus Dickus. A 6" Alien figure with a phallus reaching to its chest. Imagine if that had managed to get through...
  • Back in the late 80's/early 90's there was Europa, an ultimately cancelled Lego theme based on Europe in the 18th century, canned due to being too similar to Castle and Pirates.
  • This website features a bunch of prototypes of Star Wars toys that never made it to stores. This one is particularly painful to see.
    • In 1986-87, Kenner put together The Epic Continues, a massive pitch to, in essence, create the Star Wars Expanded Universe five years before there was an Expanded Universe so they could make more toys.
  • What do you mean there are tons of Valkyries and other merchandise we never got in the States because of Harmony Gold? This has been going for how long?
  • Monster in My Pocket had a slew of products that were due to come out including unreleased monster figures, a Haunted House play-set, and a collector fan club that would issue 1 free figure each month; all of these were unrealized dreams.
  • Palisades, the company behind those awesome The Muppets toys, got the license to do Sesame Street toys in the same style. The figures (barely) got into production, but then Palisades had a major shake-up and folded. No one from the company was even 100% sure what stage the toys were in: if the toys had made it onto the boat from China, they'd be able to sell them; if not, they were dead forever. That means that at some point in late 2005/early 2006, there were entire shipping containers full of the most amazing Sesame Street collector toys imaginable, but they legally couldn't be shipped or sold, and were most likely destroyed.
  • Revell-Monogram's Masters of the Universe toy line took up enough of the product development budget that another project had to be cancelled. A planned 1/25 scale Dodge Diplomat sedan was thus cancelled - a Headdesk moment for '80s cop show fans.
  • Seth Green made a proposal to Hasbro to release Apocalypse Pony toys, based on a My Little Pony parody in Robot Chicken.
  • Back when the Gundam franchise was still active, there were plans to release figurines of the Mobile Suits from the second half of Mobile Suit Gundam SEED and figurines were planned for Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam (including a Zeta Gundam figurine that could turn into its Waverider form). However, the oversaturation from the release of the Mobile Fighter G Gundam figurines and the relative failure of the SD Gundam Force figures killed this.
  • In the mid nineties Playmates Toys had a line of action figures based on The Addams Family cartoon show. They featured the whole family except for Wednesday, Cousin Itt, and Thing. These figures were pictured on the back of the other figures' packaging, however, with a small blurb saying that they were "coming soon". They never came. It's a shame too considering that those three are usually the most popular characters.
    • Playmates did the same thing with the TaleSpin characters Wildcat and Mad Dog.
    • A similar case happened with Bandai's Wakfu figures. The back of the only wave of figures released teases figures of Adamai, Kriss Krass and Grougaloragran that never happened.
  • Disney Princess:
    • Tinker Bell was originally in the Disney Princess franchise, but was cut because she did not fit into the princess mythology. She did later get her own franchise, however.
    • Esmeralda from The Hunchbackof Notre Dame, Jane from Tarzan, Megara from Hercules, and Alice from Alice in Wonderland also seem to have been cut, as they were all featured in several magazines and dolls. Esmeralda was even featured on a several products alongside the original eight.
    • Gisselle from Enchanted was to be included, but was cut because she was only in a half-animated film, and Disney would've had to pay all the money made by Gisselle to her actress, Amy Adams.
    • Anna and Elsa were to be included, but because of the success of Frozen, they have not been included, though they still may be in the future. Not that this stops them from showing in products together; for example there are Princess branded gummy snacks in the shape of the princesses faces, and Frozen branded gummy snacks... in the shape of the Princesses faces with Elsa and Anna added to the mix.
  • In the late 90s, McFarlane Toys released the "3D Animation from Japan" figurine series, featuring characters from popular anime. In the second series, the figurine for Tenchi Muyo!'s Tenchi Masaki had a stand that had two grooves on one end. Seeing as the stand for the first series Tenchi representative, Ryoko Hakubi, fits in perfectly in those groves, it meant that a third figurine was planned, but nothing was revealed if it was possibly Princess Ayeka or another character from the series.
  • My Little Pony:
    • Bonnie Zacherle designed My Little Pony as a unisex series but Hasbro thought that All Girls Like Ponies and marketed it as a female only series. As the years passed the toys became increasingly more feminine, eventually warping into the G2 and G3 we know of today. The series was stuck in the Girl-Show Ghetto for a long time and frequently had Shallow Parodies made of it of due to the apparent "Girly pastel unicorns and pegasus stuff for 6 year olds" concept until Lauren Faust made Friendship is Magic, which was specifically designed to be entertaining for both little girls and their family members.
    • On another note, Bonnie didn't design any unicorns or pegasi. The original six ponies - Cotton Candy, Butterscotch, Blossom, Blue Belle, Minty and Snuzzle - were all what modern fans would call "earth ponies". It wasn't until Year 2 that pegasi, unicorn, and sea ponies were introduced.
    • In the late 80s there was supposed to be a set of 18 toys called the "Irresistibles" that were designed to look more like realistic horses and had beads in them.
    • To go with the non-pony animals like Kingsley the lion, there were meant to be more humans in the toy line than Megan and Molly, but they were scrapped.
    • The Fairybright/Celestial ponies were never developed beyond concept art. They were apparently a set of G1 alien ponies.
    • Bubbles is a yellow pony with a blue mane and tail, but was originally completely blue and in a standing pose instead of sitting.
    • G3 Minty is green with pink hair, but was originally going to be entirely green.
    • There are several ponies who had their poses changed, or sometimes their colors or races (earth pony, unicorn, Pegasus, etc).
    • In G3 a winter version of the Cute Curtsey carriage was created, and apparently even had an ad in Australia, but was never released.
  • Several figures in Kenner's Jurassic Park toyline did not make it past prototype stage, although some were released in later toylines (the Bull T-Rex in the sequel's toyline, for example, was originally designed for the second wave of the first movie's toys). The best example is probably the Chaos Effect toyline. Widely disliked by fans due to weird concept of Mix and Match Critter hybrid dinosaurs and bizarre colour choices (all the dinosaurs were painted in eye-searingly bright neon colours), it didn't do much better with the general public either, and poor sales let to the cancellation of the actually pretty cool Ultimasaurus figure (the biggest new dinosaur figure in the series, which was essentially the combination of traits from all the most badass dinosaurs) and the entire second wave of toys. Prototypes of the Ultimasaurus occasionally appear on eBay, but the second wave never seems to have made it very far in the development process, as all that exists of it are a few pictures in a promotional cataloque showing repainted versions of existing toys.
    • Chaos Effect is in itself an example of this. One of the people involved in the production of the toyline once made a post on (this was years ago, so it may have been deleted since) where he explained that the toyline was originally going to be a tie-in to an animated series, and the bizarre aesthetic choices such as the weird colour schemes and the lack of details like scale on the new sculpts were done to match the cell-shaded artstyle of the cartoon. The cartoon never seems to have made past early design phases, but Kenner went ahead with producing the toyline anyway.
  • Kenner had planned for additional DC Super Powers Collection waves, which would have included Supergirl, the John Stewart Green Lantern, Deathstroke, Kid Flash, the Wonder Twins, Black Vulcan and El Dorado from Super Friends, Atomic Knight, The Creeper, Robot Superman, Black Racer, Man-Bat, Metallo, Mister Mxyzptlk, Manhunter, Vigilante, Bizarro, Obsidian, Blue Devil and Reverse Flash. Additionally, there were plans for a number of Canon Foreigner characters, including Executioner (a minotaur-like servant of Darkseid), Silicon (an android with translucent skin), Rocketman (an astronaut-themed hero), Quadrex (another of Darkseid's servants, this time a four-armed insectoid), Howitzer (a Military Superhero with hip-mounted rocket launchers) and a bizarre half-man, half-hawk creature (who was not intended to be Hawkman).
  • Kenner also had plans for a series of a series that would've reimagined DC's heroes in a Mad Max-style post-apocalyptic wasteland, complete with leather outfits covered in spikes. The line would have included Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Robin, Cyborg and Firestorm, with apparent plans for robotic versions of the characters as well.
  • Kenner's original pitch for the DC license was much grander in scale, and consisted of separate lines for the core heroes, rather than the single, consolidated line that eventually became The Super Powers Collection. The pitch contained dedicated subsets for Batman (including a Batcave play set), Superman, Wonder Woman (including an Invisible Jet toy), the New Teen Titans (including a Titans Tower play set) and Green Lantern (including an Oa play set). Perhaps most interestingly, there were tentative plans for a line of Lois Lane toys aimed at young girls, which would have consisted of Lois figures clad in various fashionable outfits. She even would have had a personal news jet called "Reportair 1."
  • Speaking of Wonder Woman, in the early 90s, Mattel began work on a line of dolls called Wonder Woman and the Star Riders, which would have seen Wondy leading a team of Sailor Moon-style Magical Girl Warriors. A companion TV series was also planned, but the whole project fell apart before the dolls could make it to stores. Despite this, prototypes of the initial wave of dolls were produced, photos of which can be found online.
  • Being a Long Runner, the Marvel Legends line has a lot of examples:
    • Under Toybiz:
      • According to Jesse Falcon, the tremendously popular Build-A-Figure concept introduced in Series 9 almost never happened. Retailers had previously approached ToyBiz about the possibility of adding more play features to the toys, and one of the initial ideas the Legends crew came up with was packaging the figures with special missile-firing display bases.
      • The Professor X figure was originally supposed to come with his hover chair from the 90s comics, but the final figure was instead released with a generic wheelchair from the first X-Men movie line.
      • Paul Komoda, an artist/sculptor who had done work with H. R. Giger, drew up designs for Lizard and Rhino figures that would've been featured in the 12-inch Marvel Legends Icons line.
      • An Absorbing Man Build-A-Figure was designed, but never produced. Hasbro would end up making their own Absorbing Man Build-A-Figure many years later. The same goes for an Odin Build-A-Figure that was designed by ToyBiz years before the one Hasbro eventually released.
      • An Avengers Quinjet Build-A-Figure (dubbed a "Build-A-Vehicle") was planned for 2006, with a working prototype made out of paper and plastic. Due to the vehicle's massive size, the individual pieces would have been released across four waves.
      • The X-Babies were originally going to be included as pack-ins with the Mojo wave figures, but ended up being dropped. Additionally, the chase variant figures in the wave were planned to come with the Mitey 'Vengers, child versions of Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and Hawkeye.
      • Several other pack-ins were cancelled, including Frog Thor, Wasp and Wild Child, who were planned to be included with the Walmart-exclusive Thor, Ant-Man and Age of Apocalypse Sabretooth figures, respectively.
      • A prototype Forbush Man figure was designed, but it's unknown when and where it was going to be released.
      • Designs were drawn for a figure of Bug from the Micronauts. The figure was presumably never made because of the infamous legal issues stemming from the Micronauts franchise not actually being owned by Marvel.
      • A Darkhawk figure was also designed. Darkhawk would finally get his own Marvel Legends figure years later under Hasbro, as part of one of their Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2-themed waves.
      • A prototype for a Dire Wraith Build-A-Figure was made, but never officially produced.
      • The Onslaught wave was originally going to have a gimmick where each villain figure would come packaged with a henchman character. These henchmen included a Skrull warrior with the Abomination, a Brood with Blackheart, a Hand ninja with Lady Deathstrike, an A.I.M. member with Green Goblin, a HYDRA agent with Loki, a Doombot with Crimson Dynamo and a Hellfire Club guard with Pyro. All of the main figures except Crimson Dynamo were later released, but the pack-in henchmen were dropped. However, the Skrull and the Brood were later reused for Diamond Collectibles' Marvel Select line, while the mould for the HYDRA agent wound up being retooled and released as a standalone Marvel Legends figure under Hasbro.
      • Once ToyBiz lost the Marvel license, they considered doing a Spiritual Successor to Marvel Legends featuring characters Marvel had previously published but lost the rights to, such as ROM Spaceknight and Conan the Barbarian. They eventually attempted something similar with the short-lived Legendary Comic Book Heroes line, which was basically the Marvel Legends formula applied to characters from other companies like Judge Dredd, Witchblade, The Darkness and Madman. Unfortunately, ToyBiz ultimately folded.
    • Under Hasbro:
      • When Hasbro first took over the license, they ran a poll in ToyFare that allowed fans to choose the next Legends figure to be made. Sunfire ended up winning, but the other options were classic Storm, Silver Samurai, Northstar, Aurora, Gambit in his Muir Island uniform, Magneto and Lilandra, all of whom had prototypes made.
      • Another fan poll was held at San Diego Comic-Con 2009, with prototypes shown off for each entry. While several of the entries shown at the convention were later released outside the poll, the Hood, Bombastic Bag-Man, Lady Bullseye, Multiple Man, Terror, Nuke, Brother Voodoo and classic 70s Ms. Marvel weren't as lucky. However, completely different versions of Nuke, Brother Voodoo and Multiple Man were later released as part of the Captain America: Civil War movie wave, the Doctor Strange (2016) movie wave and the Apocalypse wave, respectively.
      • The Red King and Bi-Beast were originally slated for the Fin Fang Foom Build-A-Figure wave, but despite having prototypes made, ended up being bumped.
      • Blade and Dani Moonstar were planned to appear in the Epic Heroes wave as chase variants of The Punisher and Mystique, respectively. Neither ever made it to retail, despite publicity photos being released. A completely different Blade figure would later be released in the Man-Thing wave, while a different Dani Moonstar figure was finally released as a Walgreens exclusive in 2019.
      • Hawkeye in his The Ultimates 3 costume was planned at one point, with preliminary images showing up online.
      • The Phoenix Five version of Cyclops was announced as part of the Puck Build-A-Figure wave, but never made it into production. Hasbro reps would later claim that they scrapped the idea for the figure due to it no longer being a relevant costume. Photos of the prototype can still be found online. Photos of a modern version of Rogue figure were also shown off for this wave, but the figure was never released.
      • The same thing happened with an Age of Apocalypse Jean Grey figure that was supposed to have been part of the Rocket Raccoon Build-A-Figure wave.
      • The Iron Man 3 line was supposed to include the Mandarin and a comic version of Pepper Potts as Rescue. Both figures made it to the prototype stage, but neither was officially released. A Retooled and repainted version of Rescue was later released as an exclusive offered through Marvel's Marvel Unlimited digital service, while the Mandarin finally saw release as part of an MCU 10th anniversary box set.
      • A Songbird prototype (sporting her short-haired design from Jeff Parker's Thunderbolts run) was shown off at conventions, but never produced. An alternate Songbird figure based on her post-Civil War design was later released as part of the first Avengers: Infinity War wave.
  • ToyBiz had also designed a line of 12-inch Transformers-style figures that would've feature featured robotic versions of Marvel characters that could morph into vehicles.
  • ToyBiz also considered the idea of a 12-inch line featuring characters from the Ultimate Marvel universe, which would have included Wolverine, Iron Man and Captain America.
  • Hasbro solicited images for a line called Marvel Heroes, which would have consisted of repaints of older 6-inch ToyBiz figures. The line would have included Wolverine (a repaint of ToyBiz's Marvel Legends Series 6 Wolverine), Mutant X Iceman (a repaint of ToyBiz's Marvel Legends Iceman) and Ultimate Marvel versions of Captain America (a repaint of ToyBiz's Marvel Legends Ultimate Captain America), Magneto (a repaint of ToyBiz's Marvel Legends Magneto), and Cyclops (a repaint of ToyBiz's X-Men Classics Cyclops).
  • There were also plans for a line that would've featured robot versions of Marvel's heroes.
  • In the mid-1980s, Hornby Railways had plans to produce a model of "City of Truro", but the idea was rejected because the sample model looked too much like the Churchward County class, which Hornby were already manufacturing models of. For Comparison's sake, this is a Churchward County, and this is what City of Truro looks like. Given that Hornby's quality standards were somewhat lower than those of its competitors at the time (Dapol and Palitoy), it's possible that Hornby's sample model of "City of Truro" wasn't a completely accurate representation of the real thing.
  • Mixels changed variously before the toys and show hit:
    • Before Cartoon Network came along, Mixels was "Monsters". Sets of five in a tribe, but overly simple designs.
    • According to some preliminary packages, Shuff and Seismo's names would have been swapped with each other, Shuff would have had a looser crystal on his head that looked like hair, Vulk's ears would have been red instead of black. Also, the Nixels would have come in various shapes, and not all just be squares.
    • Balk was originally shorter and squatter with thinner tentacles and smaller pupils.
    • Kraw was originally named "Bouncer", Gobba was "Chippo" and Tentro was "Flexi" . Some sources still slip up on Tentro and call him Flexi, though...including an issue of the LEGO magazine.
  • Galoob was going to release a line of figurines based on the Garbage Pail Kids Cartoon and at the time had made prototypes based on all of the main Garbage Pail Kids except for Terri Cloth as well as prototypes for figures of Trash Can Ken, Michelle Muck, Trashed Tracy, Alien Ian, Janet Planet, Toothy Ruthie, and Liberty Libby. Unfortunately, unfounded parental complaints about the cartoon resulted in the show never getting to air on television, and the abrupt cancellation put the kibosh on the planned toyline.
  • GoGo's Crazy Bones:
    • Magic Box Int. made a deal with Nintendo to make a set of Gogos based off of Pokémon in 1998, but the plans for this set were later scrapped.
    • The Superstar set was to be released in North America in 2012, but thanks to the series losing popularity at that point, it never got released outside of Europe.
  • Before SOTA's Street Fighter line folded, the company had plans to release figures of Dee Jay and Alex, the prototypes of which were shown off at San Diego Comic-Con. The company also announced a Darkstalkers line, which was to feature Morrigan, Demitri, Lord Raptor, Lillith, Anakaris, Donovan and Jedah, all of whom at least made it to the prototype stage.
  • In 1997, Stretch Armstrong almost received a Distaff Counterpart, Flex Armstrong. However, she never made it past the prototype stage. (Confusingly, the prototype still appeared on Stretch Armstrong packaging.) It ultimately took 20 years for a Stretch Armstrong toyline to gain any female presence, via The Merch for Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters.Episodes #12- 13 spoilers 
  • Images for several Ever After High toys turned up online in 2018, including a Meeshell whose hair changed colours (from light blue to dark blue), but they were never released due to the line being cancelled.
  • Advertisements exist in a catalog for unreleased Kellytoy plushes of the Chowder and The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack cast.
  • The short-lived European collectible toy series Flick-to-Stick Bungees had an even shorter stint in America - while the European version had two sets of 96 characters, the American version had only one set of half that number of characters. Had the American version been more successful, however, there actually would have been a Series 2 released there, as evidenced by a "Series 2" being mentioned in the pamphlet/manual which came with one of the playsets.
  • Bandai America's Power Rangers Legacy Collection, a Marvel Legends-esque line of 6.5'' Power Rangers figures, featured several examples during its three years of existence:
    • When the line was first released, many collectors noted that outside of rare cases (i.e. Sixth Rangers), the Ranger figures did not come with their own personal weapons from the series (i.e. the mass-retail Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers Red Ranger didn't have his Power Swordnote ). Bandai America said they were looking into possibly releasing weapons packs containing the Rangers' personal weapons at some point. In the end, of the Rangers that were missing their weapons, only the core five Mighty Morphin Rangers got theirs... by way of having them packaged with special "metallic" versions of the figures.
    • Zeo Rangers I (Pink) and II (Yellow) were originally scheduled to be released as part of Series 4 (for the latter) and 5 (for the former) in 2017-18, but were pulled from the waves after Bandai America noticed that female figures weren't selling as well as males (some female figures were still on store shelves well over a year after their initial release). They ended up being released as GameStop-exclusive figures in June 2018. Ditto for the Yellow Dino Thunder Ranger, who was supposed to have been released in Series 5 along with Zeo Ranger I but instead became another GameStop exclusive nearly a year afterwards.
    • In mid-2017, Bandai America announced plans to release the Psycho Rangers, the Silver Space Ranger (which would've completed the In Space team) and the Crimson and Navy Thunder Rangers (to go along with the Red, Blue and Yellow Wind Rangers from Series 1) across various waves from 2018-19. In addition, four of the Psychos were to have been packaged with an Alpha 5 build-a-figure piece. Though Psycho Red, Blue and Black ended up getting released, all other mentioned figures (and the Alpha 5 build-a-figure) were scrapped due to Bandai America losing the global Power Rangers toy license to Hasbro in 2018.
    • The entire team of Power Rangers Ninja Steel was also slated to get a Legacy Collection release before Bandai America lost the license.
  • In early 2018, Wicked Cool Toys announced they got the license for The Loud House toys, with a full range shown at NY Toy Fair featuring two lines of small figures (one of 1-inch figures released in blindbags with stackable cube rooms and one of 3-inch figures released in windowed boxes), at least three waves of plushes (the first featuring characters in their regular clothes, the second with characters in swimsuits and summer attires taken from the episodes "In Tents Debate" and "Linc or Swim" and the third with the characters as superheroes - Lincoln as Ace Savvy, Clyde as One-eyed Jack and so on) and even small sized keychain plushes (no clear pics are available, but in one of the pictures available online a keychain plush of Clyde in his spider costume from the episode "Along Came a Sister" can be seen). In late 2018 the first eight 3-inch figures (Lincoln, Lori, Leni, Luna, Lucy, Lisa, Lily and Clyde) and the Lincoln plush from the first wave of plushes were released on Amazon, with Toywiz later getting the remainder of the first plush wave (Lola, Lana, Luna, Lucy and Clyde) in early 2019. As they didn't find physical retailers interested in the figures, WCT lost the license and cancelled the remainder of the line (the blindbags, the other plushes and a second wave of 3-inch figures featuring Lynn, Luan, Lana, Lola and two other versions of Lincoln).
  • Mysterians was a cancelled toyline developed by Knickerbocker Toys in late 1982 for a planned release in 1983. The toyline would have reportedly consisted of two sub-lines - "The Hidden Force" - composed of the heroic "Golden Guardians" Goldar, Seekar, and Tinkar, and the "Evil Warbots" Vengor, Blastor, and Destructor, - and "The Mobile Force", composed of Jeepar, Blazar, Truckar, and Speedar. The "Hidden Force" toys were released anyway in 1984 under a different company called Marchon Inc., while the "Mobile Force" figures were released by Takara in their Micro Change line and later came in the west as part of the first wave of Transformers figures, becoming the characters that nowadays are known as Brawn, Gears, Huffer and Windcharger.
  • Kenner, the company that produced the toyline for the Beetlejuice movie, at one point planned to make action figures for the animated series, but the plans were scrapped for reasons unknown. All that's known to have surfaced is a prototype for the head of a figure of the character Jacques LaLean.


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