One of the highlights of NY Toy Fair 2020 was getting the chance to chat with legendary graphic artist Frank Kozik. When it came to concert poster art from the mid-80’s through the “grunge” era, Frank’s posters heralded the arrival of some of the time’s most classic bands from The Butthole Surfers to The Melvins to Soundgarden – bands were psyched to see their name on one of Frank’s posters. In 2001 Frank decided to dedicate his time to the toy industry and soon became interested in vinyl toys and then in 2014, following NECA’s acquisition of Kidrobot, he joined the team as Chief Creative Officer.
Frank was graciously willing to chat with us about the upcoming launch of his new “Bhunny” line of collectible pop culture vinyl figures.
“There are five characters hitting the shelves now”, Frank said, “we’re starting with Beetlejuice, Donatello (TMNT), Spongebob Squarepants, Bob Ross and Hello Kitty. The idea is to release six to eight per month, but some will be special releases like the Godzilla 1954 which will only be available in the March Lootcrate.”
The idea behind the line was to create, “a slightly more interesting yet inexpensive platform to get people introduced to the concept of collecting vinyl figures. It’s meant to appeal to not only the regular pop culture collector but also to kids who may be new to collecting.”
“All of the figures will be indexed by release number and year”, Frank went on to say, “so that folks interested in collecting will know which of the set they are missing.” They also plan to stagger releases of characters from the same series; for instance, “if someone is a huge Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fan, we’re not going to release all of them at once and kill your pocket, we’ll stagger them over time. Although”, Franks adds, “at a $12 price point for such a good-looking piece of art, that’s not really that bad anyway.”
We asked Frank how many licenses they currently have, and it appears that Kidrobot is pulling zero punches with this release. “We’ve got about 75 licenses right now”, he answered, “and my creative team and I have designed almost 220 characters already so it will be a nice forward-rolling program.”
Being that we are a horror website, we asked about the prospects of some horror characters coming out. “Absolutely”, Frank said, “a lot of these figures will be horror-related and I’m really hoping that they sell well so that I can get into some really obscure horror stuff because I like a lot of really weird shit like The Void and Beyond the Black Rainbow and I’d love to put some stuff like that out in vinyl.”
We couldn’t let Frank go without asking him to hit us with three of his favorite horror films. “I like a ton”, he said, “but I’ll give you three sort of recent films: I really liked Cabin in the Woods, I dug the Suspiria remake a lot and I have to put Mandy in there because it’s really screwed up.”
We’d like to thank Frank Kozik for his time and let you know that you can grab the first five Bhunny figures by clicking here and you can grab the Godzilla release by clicking here to sign up for the March Lootcrate. Each figure is 4″ tall and comes with an additional appendage in collectible keychain form known as a Bhunny Paw, Kidrobot’s (more humane) version of a lucky rabbit’s foot. Happy hunting!
Stay gory my friends.