Earlier this year Late last year, Disney Store Japan significantly raised the kawaii-ness bar when they introduced ‘Tsum Tsum’ to the market. Often likened to bits of sushi by admirers, the stackable chibi-inspired plush (available in three different sizes) bring a whole new form to Disney favorites. Since launch, the collection has grown to include collections of its own based on films such as Alice in Wonderland, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio and more. Most recently, Disney Store released an entire Easter collection featuring the Disney characters sporting bunny ears as well as Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. The collection has been so well received, that it also inspired a free-to-play mobile app matching game for Apple iOS and Android devices.
And now, according to a recent trademark application, it appears that Disney Store may be planning on introducing the adorable critters stateside. Although the actual description for the use of the trademark is a bit peculiar, there is no mistaking the ‘Tsum Tsum’ name. Expectations do need to be tempered, however, as there has been no official announcement by Disney Store as of yet and we’ve been down the mistaken road before when we noted the same type of legal activity for Japan’s Unibearsity line (though we still believe there was a genuine intent at one point). ‘Tsum Tsum’ would not necessarily be unprecedented either as it certainly brings back memories of a short-lived line of comparable plush from Disney Store, the Cutesations.
Since the re-acquisition of Disney Store Japan by Disney Consumer Products, the company has worked to leverage its exclusive merchandise worldwide, with the most notable exchange being the Disney Animators’ Collection of dolls, but to our knowledge, this would be the first time that native Disney Store Japan merchandise found its way to North American stores. If Disney Store does in fact bring the line to domestic stores, it should be interesting to see which characters make the cut as Japan pays particular attention to lesser known characters that don’t generally have as much a presence in the US, such as Scrump from Lilo and Stitch.
For more information about ‘Tsum Tsum’ and to see the complete collection (currently available for sale) visit the ‘Tsum Tsum’ page at Disney Store Japan.
UPDATE #1: An article on dpost.jp responding to this one cites a press release from Disney Japan from April 18, 2014 which boasts — if Google translate is to be believed — over one hundred million Tsum Tsum plush had been sold in Japan in just 176 days. That equates to nearly 570,000 units sold every day or 395 sold per minute across a full 24 hour day.