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Oscar Opus: A cyber awards show made for collectors to feel like a red-carpet winner!
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

The fantasy of million-dollar fashions and age-defying figures that is Hollywood’s most breathtaking night has ended, and the awardsoscarstatues1 season has come to a Technicolor end. Or has it? I think host Billy Crystal was right when he joked about the TV audience watching “a bunch of millionaires giving golden statues to one another.” Admittedly, there is something odd about seeing highly paid people, who already receive accolades and applause, garnering more trophies and prestige. Still, the night is festive, glamorous, and allows movie lovers a chance to revel in the spectacle and place some wagers on the side. It is the Super Bowl for cinephiles! (I did very, very well with my Academy Award picks.)

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Toy Fair 2012: My fair ladies, lambs, long lines, and laughter.
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

Toy Fair is a unique and magical place. And what makes the February staple at New York City’s Javits Center even more unusual is thetoyfaircutoutkids1 total absence of real children. Yes, a huge cut-out of curly-haired, smiling moppets greet you as you slog in from the frigidly cold Manhattan streets, but the real deal is nowhere to be seen. Kids are an exotic rare creature at Toy Fair—seeing one or two (the offspring of some determined dealers or manufacturers) is like spotting a unicorn or an original swirl-ponytail Barbie #1, Mint in Box, at a local garage sale.

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Hits and Misses: Which doll would you like to see on the big screen?
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

The other day while watching the Super Bowl—no, not watching it, rejoicing in it—I had to do a double take. During one of the manybattleship1 advertisements that bookend the pigskin plays, I thought I saw a line of text scrawl across the screen about “Hasbro, the company that gave you the Transformers.” And then, lo and behold, there came a series of scenes that depicted fleets, and vessels, and men in uniform, and women with headsets on, and finally Liam Neeson. Most of the action seemed to be taking place on a battleship.

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Too Hot to Handle? Computer geeks, Middle East hierarchies & public demand combust.
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

Writing a doll blog makes me supersensitive to what is selling and what is percolating in the toy industry. Hoping to brew a finely tunedstevejobsdoll1 sense for what is going on, I’m also called upon to meditate and ruminate on all these developments and how they impact our daily lives. So, blending the practical (doll sales) with the philosophical (my blog ramblings), if a doll DOESN’T sell in the forest of toy stores and websites, does it still make a sound? In the case of this week’s blog, it makes an even bigger sound than you could ever imagine.

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Toying Around the TV Set.
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

It’s no secret that I LOVE TV. People often denigrate it by calling it the “boob tube” or the “idiot box,” but, to me, those are justtina-fey-and-doll1 instances of “sticks and stones.” As long as you don’t hurl pebbles at my flat-screen Vizio, it’s all good.

One of the things I like best about just chilling out and watching a program—comedies and zombie shows are my favorites, go figure—is when a doll makes an unexpected guest appearance. So far, the new year is only a few weeks old, and already dolls are popping up everywhere on the pop culture front.

 

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Dollars and Dolls: Making dolls and a living is the American dream, and beyond.
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

Every so often, I’ll meet someone who will be tickled pink that I work with dolls. After answering the obligatory North Pole and Santa’smarthastewart_new Workshop questions—I telecommute, I explain, so I don’t need to check in with the reindeer on a daily basis, and yes, Rudolph’s nose IS that shiny—I explain how the world of dolls is actually quite huge, innovative, constantly re-inventing itself, and can be quite profitable.

When the issue of capital is raised, so are the eyebrows.

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Barbie Beating Cancer: Is Mattel bound to make a connection?
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

Oh, my goodness! Barbie, why are you such an attention hog? Well, “hog” isn’t the right word when you are dealing with the physically fitbarbiebaldfacebook_NEW vinyl one. Neither is “glory hound,” because Barbie is many things, but a dog is not one of them.

In typical polarizing fashion, Barbie has managed to kick off the new year with enormous Yahoo and Google searches, coverage in all forms of mass media, and a petition asking her to be a role model—yet again—but this time for a very unexpected, very meaningful, and surprisingly controversial cause.

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Cradling Memories, One Doll at a Time
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

Christmas 2011 has come and gone, and I am left with an acre’s worth of wrapping-paper scraps and scads of mangled ribbons andGift_Tags1 bows. The debris that is left behind after the annual orgy of gift-exchanging is truly amazing. That’s one of the key miracles of Christmas: so much gift wrapping, package decorating, home ornamentation, and front-lawn festooning—hours and hours, days and days, weeks and weeks of preparation, and it’s over in the jingle of a bell. And still we do it all again next year!

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