Recently some local LA Mom Bloggers and myself were invited by Dreamworks Animation to watch Kung Fu Panda 2, and experience the Year of Awesomeness. We sat in one of the fancy screening rooms, with comfy reclining chairs, which was very awesome. Then we were introduced to the editor, Clare Knight (a lot of women werewho talked about her wonderful experience working on this film. Also a fun fact, was that her child voice is that of baby Po. Absolutely Adorable!
Next we were treated to a delicious lunch, and our children were treated to a Toy Demo. Mattel was nice enough to bring out all of their newest line of toys, all inspired from the film. And they had it all! Kung Fu Wrestler Po, Baby Po, Posable Po, Smack Talking Po, Little Po, Big Po. (Not to be confused with Big Poo) No matter who your child's favorite character is or what age, Mattel has got you covered. From Tigress to Monkey to the evil Lord Shen. (BwaHaHa)
They even had collectible Trading Cards, which were one of my favorites. But the overall favorite toy, the one that the kids were literally fighting over (I know, because my daughter was one of them) was the "Golden Cannon." (As pictures above - Looks like a Gold Chinese Dragon) Yes, leave it to the weapon of mass destruction to get the kids all in a frenzy. The coolest part about it was that it launches these little torpedo pieces. (Sound effects provided by your own child) The other winning toy was the Kung Fu Po Wrestler. It's a large plush animal Po. He talks, says his little funny phrases that only Jack Black would. It's the perfect partner to teach your little one Kung Fu, and then soft enough to cuddle with them in bed at night. (Available now at your toy stores everywhere)
Finally before the event came to an end, we were taken on a tour of the palace, I mean place. I must admit I was giddy about this part of the day. I mean c'mon, Dreamworks is the studio who created animated films like How to Train Your Dragon, Madagascar and Shrek. I kept hoping I'd run into Marty, Melman, Gloria or Alex... but no luck! They were probably hiding out in the lush gardens.
I also figured out the secret to DreamWorks Animation's success. It's because the artists work at heaven on earth. Well actually they work in Glendale, but the campus that the animators work on is pretty perfect. (Now I know why they were voted one of Fortune's 2011 Top Ten companies to work for.) They even call it a campus, which is exactly what it reminded me of. An ultra chic college, but with a hotel resort in the middle of it all. Yes, it was that nice. The architecture is old style mediterranean full of arches and towers, all surrounded by lush trees. The flowers seemed just a little bit brighter and more colorful there. They had a commissary where the employees eat breakfast and lunch for FREE everyday. And it had it's own dessert station. They have ponds with coy fish, a lagoon, and a large water fountain. They play ping pong at lunch. Some even work out with a personal trainer during breaks. They were doing all of these activities while we were there. I also found out that they offer their employees classes like drawing, painting and voiceover technique. Isn't that FABULOUS? And is anyone else as terribly jealous as I am?
Well in case you couldn't tell it was a wonderful day. I am so thankful that my daughter and I got the opportunity to experience Dreamworks in such a candid way. (Special Thanks to Kelley and Kim)
Crafty Kung Fu Panda spirit. Full of 3D Characters to make, BookMarks, Games, Pencil Toppers, Etc.
Make sure to look for Dreamworks Animation's next movie coming out this fall, Puss in Boots.
*Full Disclosure: I was not paid or compensated for this post. I was invited to the screening of Kung Fu Panda 2, and given some toys to help facilitate my review. The opinions here are my own, and not influenced in any way by my crush on a giant panda bear named Po.*