Shipping information indicates that retailers are not shifting as much as Star Wars stock as they did in 2016.
It seems that the Force is not with Star Wars product sales in 2017. Data company Panjiva has found that the 6,587 shipping containers bringing in Star Wars stock ahead of The Last Jedi is 47% down on the figure in 2016 when fans were waiting for the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The figure is 56% down on 2015, when Star Wars: The Force Awakens was released.
In reporting the news, Toy World were given two factors that may have caused the reduction:
Panjiva research analyst Chris Rogers says that part of the problem is the recent Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection filing by Toys R Us, which not only has the giant retailer ordering less product but has also impacted industry confidence. Retailers are also still trying to gain a sense of “what the steady state” of Star Wars product is, as 2015’s The Force Awakens was the first instalment for the franchise in 10 years.
The stats do not include shipments from Mexico, which is where the US market gets the majority of its LEGO stock. That said, it is highly unlikely that LEGO Star Wars has completely bucked this trend, that is also reflected in NPD toy industry data.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is in cinemas now. The LEGO sets based on the upcoming movie are available now.