Random House is expanding its Little Golden Books franchise with a number of notable new products. A major release is a 12-book box set of Disney, Pixar, Marvel and Star Wars titles – the first time a box has crossed all major Disney brands – to mark the 100th anniversary of The Walt Disney Company in 2023 The Set will be released in December.
“They have plans for an epic year-long celebration,” said Chris Angelilli, vice president and editor-in-chief of licensed publishing at Random House. “Our first Little Golden Book with Disney was in 1944 and we’ve made countless books about many of their properties. We like to think we’ve played at least a small part in Disney’s history.” The Anniversary Brand Box includes titles that traverse the decades, including links to Toy Story, Star Wars: A New Hope, It’s a Small World, The Lion King, Moana, Frozen, 101 Dalmatians, Princess and the Frog, Pixar carsand iron man There is also a vintage Cinderella title and a book from 1950, Mickey Mouse’s picnicthis is exclusive to this box.
Meanwhile, the publisher is reaching into every nook and cranny of the Disney universe in search of Little Golden Book content. It publishes a new Little Golden Book for Star Wars: Visions, an anime-inspired anthology series primarily aimed at adults. “For Star Wars, we only have the rights to the Little Golden Book, and we didn’t think there was anything age-appropriate of it visions‘ said Angelilli. “But Lucas’ creative director called and said he should watch this one episode, T0-B1. I’m glad he did. It’s kid-friendly and about a droid who dreams of being a Jedi Knight. It reminds me of Pinocchio. And the animation style is perfect for Golden Books. We planned to find an illustrator but ended up using screenshots.”
Other new small golden books include A puppy for Hanukkah, the first Little Golden Book on the subject of Hanukkah and one of the few in the history of the Little Golden Book. It is based on a Disney Channel and Disney+ music video performed by Hamilton star Daveed Diggs; More Little Golden Books featuring Disney lyrics are in the pipeline. And for DC Comics, a new Little Golden Book features characters from Shazam and Black Adam, both of whom will appear in feature films, the latter starring Duane “The Rock” Johnson.
“Black Adam is a unique and complicated character that walks the line between villain and hero,” said Angelilli. The book, help heroes!shows Shazam teaching Black Adam what it means to be a hero.