New 7-Inch Scale Action Figure Series Announced!...
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As we announced in our interview last fall (see HERE), master sculptor Rocco Tartamella had partnered with his old friend Joe Veteri to form Capo Collectibles, now known simply as CapoToys (CapoToys.com). While still unknown to many toy collectors, CapoToys plans to change all that with their recent licensing announcement: Capcom's Street Fighter. The timeless fighting game will receive a new 7 inch scale action figure series, the first prototypes to debut at this year's International Toy Fair in New York (Booth #5042). Almost entirely ball jointed (19 plus points of articulation), the line will standout with detailed sculpts and the unique addition of microfiber cloth components on select figures. We went straight to Rocco to find out more on this exciting new endeavor...
FIGURES.COM: Congratulations on getting the Street Fighter action figure license! I know you're a huge fan of the game and characters, so this must be like a dream project for you...
ROCCO (CAPOTOYS): Thanks, Iím ecstatic about the acquisition. No doubt, Iím a big fan of Street Fighter so this is truly a dream come true for me. Iíve been talking about sculpting my own line of Street Fighter action figures for over a decade. We all know there have been some great Street Fighter toys that have been released over the years, and while Iíve enjoyed them, Iíve always wanted to see what I could do and how far I could take the sculpting and articulation with these amazing characters. About 7 years ago I worked on proposal concepts with another company for some Capcom items and though it never saw the light of day, I thought somehow Iíd eventually get a chance to sculpt this line.
Well fast forward to present day and here I am living that dream. Iím the Art Director and Co-owner of CapoToys working directly with Capcom, this is awesome. As the Art Director and Sculptor, there is no go-between to slow down the process resulting in smooth, swift approvals. I am able to show the licensor my vision for their IP directly; this saves so much time, cost and keeps the project fresh, invigorated and energized. It has been such a pleasure working with Brian and Kanda of Capcom.
FIGURES.COM: Will your figures be based on any particular game in the Street Fighter series? Are you going for a classic Street Fighter II look or a more modern appearance (upcoming Ultra Street Fighter IV)?
CAPOTOYS: Thatís a great question. We were originally going for other looks, but as we approached Capcom for the license, they informed us of the new release of Ultra Street Fighter IV, which is the current benchmark in terms of look and feel for the series. When I finally got to see the control art to begin sculpting the first wave of our CapoToys Street Fighter Series, I couldnít wait to get started! Iím really passionate about what I am doing and have added a lot of details that I am sure fans will enjoy. Itís been an exhilarating challenge in balance with trying to maintain the aesthetics of each character while introducing the proper amount of articulation required to get each character into their specific fighting pose(s).
FIGURES.COM: Which characters can collectors expect in the first series? How many series do you plan on releasing each year?
CAPOTOYS: CapoToys, Street Fighter Seriesí first wave will include some real fan favorites. For the first year we will be releasing 5 figures, Ryu, Sagat, Guile, Chun-Li and Blanka, with plans to release another 5 to 10 figures for the following year. We currently have 4 to 5 rounds planned in accordance with our license. In addition, exclusives are being prepared for big ComicCons, Street Fighter Tournaments and Evo. So keep an eye out!
FIGURES.COM: The Street Fighter games star well over 50 characters - some better known than others. What decides which character gets produced? Will there be any fan voting?
CAPOTOYS: True, there are quite a few characters featured in the game so this was no easy task, initially. However, as it turns out the fans have already been heard, in a sense. Through extensive research Capcom has extracted the breakdown of character popularity helping to make a better assessment of which characters to include. We ended up working hand-in-hand with Capcom to devise the lists and in the end we will be releasing an awesome line up. Can you tell Iím excited?
FIGURES.COM: Are player color variants planned? Exclusives?
CAPOTOYS: Absolutely, variants and exclusives are currently at the planning stage since we only acquired the license roughly 8 weeks ago. Iíve been working pretty much non-stop getting all five of the first round ready for Toy Fair 2014, and itís been amazing! Our Street Fighter Series action figures have 19 to 24 points of articulation and so far the response has been wonderful.
FIGURES.COM: You've announced that the figure line will be in 7-inch scale, meaning the characters will be a game accurate height to each other. Approximately how tall will your largest fighter be? Smallest?
CAPOTOYS: Yes, the figures are in scale with one another so it should be a lot of fun for collectors. Capcom has been wonderful and provided me with an excellent size chart, which proved immensely helpful in sculpting the series line. Out of the figures planned, Sakura will be the smallest at 6 inches, and the largest figure, Sagat, stands at a massive 9 inches tall.
FIGURES.COM: The use of real cloth on your Street Fighter figures is a brilliant idea. What prompted that decision? Will the figures include any accessories?
CAPOTOYS: When at the early stages of planning these figures, I really wanted them to have as much mobility as possible without taking anything away from the aesthetics of each fighter. In many cases the rubberized clothing can dramatically limit mobility sometimes hindering the number of poses an action figure can get into, as well as altering the overall design and look of certain figures. For instance, I couldnít imagine Sagat without the use of cloth for his kick boxing trunks, especially considering how beefy this character is, and consequently the size of the ball joints in his legs, for me it was a must. Not all of the characters in the line will have cloth elements, however, only certain fighters where it is appropriate. In the first round, 2 characters will have cloth components, Ryuís Gi and headband and Sagatís ďTigerĒ Kick Boxing Trunks. It didnít make sense for us to use cloth with Guile, Chun-Li or Blanka. Youíll need to stay tuned for all of Round 2, but I can say that Ken will also have a cloth Gi. Aesthetically pleasing and attention to even the smallest details in this line, was our objective at CapoToys, and I am confident that we are doing everything we can to achieve that. Regarding accessories, as I mentioned earlier, weíve only just acquired the license so this along with price point is to be determined.
FIGURES.COM: And now for the three biggest questions: 1) When is the first Street Fighter figure series expected to be released? 2) Where will collectors be able to purchase them? 3) How much will each figure retail for?
CAPOTOYS: Iím aware that these are super important questions, however, we just recently secured the license and weíve hit the ground running ever since. I wasnít able to begin actual sculpting work on these figures until early November 2013. So my focus has primarily been on the sculptures. Ask any hand sculptor in the industry and youíll find that most can attest that it is no easy task to finish just one fully articulated figure in a month, let alone to sculpt 5 fully articulated action figures in just over two months, and get the prototypes approved by the licensor.
In saying this, we are looking to have an exclusive at Evo (July 11-13) and San Diego Comic Con (July 24-27). Following these, we are scheduled to release the line for Fall 2014. Because we are a relatively new toy company, we are still expanding our buying network so please contact us at Info@CapoToys.com to schedule an appointment to meet with us at Toy Fair, Booth #5042. We will also be selling direct at CapoToys.com and on Amazon. Though we do not have definite numbers as to final price point, we are aware of the current market and plan to keep our line comfortably within that range.
FIGURES.COM: Sounds like Street Fighter fans will be very happy with Capo's new action figures! Any parting words?
CAPOTOYS: Thank you so much for taking the time to cover the work we are doing with Capcomís Street Fighter. We are very excited as a company to debut our 6-9 inch CapoToys Street Fighter Series line at Toy Fair, along with our Elvira licensed properties, the 5Ē Elvira MiniBobbler and 7Ē Elvira Bounciní Babes.
None of this would be happening if it werenít for the support of my amazing wife Krissie, my partners, my awesome prototyping team and seasoned industry veterans Ė ďIrishĒ Joe Prototyping for mold making and Kat Sapene for Paint Masters Ė they are amazing and truly professional. I also want to give a special thanks to Capcom for the incredible opportunity to license their IP and to be able to work together to create this outstanding line of action figures.
Stay tuned to Figures.com for our complete February Toy Fair coverage of CapoToys' Street Fighter Series!
- Interview by Jeff Saylor
- All Prototype Figure Photos Courtesy of CapoToys and Approved by Capcom
- Special "THANK YOU" To Rocco For Taking Time Out From Sculpting To Do This Interview. We Look Forward To Seeing These Figures In Our Collections!