Kid Friendly: ABC’s The Toy Box TV Show #TheToyBox #ABCTVEvent

I received an all expense paid trip from Disney to attend the #Cars3Event. The opinions expressed here are my own and I received no monetary compensation. #TheToyBox #ABCTVEvent

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While on the #Cars3Event press trip, we had the opportunity to screen ABC’s new toy-competition series, “The Toy Box”, airing on Friday, April 7th at 8pm EDT on ABC Television Network. Did I mention that we got to screen it AT Pixar Studios? I was pinching myself as I watched a show INSIDE the creative genius behind some of my favorite movies. My job is pretty cool sometimes. Now set those DVR’s because you won’t want to miss this unique take on a competition reality show. The cast is a great mix of personalities that jive well together. It’s creative, hilarious and very family friendly. I can’t wait to watch with my 6 year old, mini inventor. Anyone who is a kid at heart will love this show!

NOAH RITTER, AALYRAH CALDWELL, TOBY GREY, SOPHIA GRACE BROWNLEE, ERIC STONESTREET

photo credit: ABC/Jeff Neira

In each episode, inventors present their toy concepts to a group of mentors that include Dylan’s Candy Bar owner Dylan Lauren, toy guru Jim Silver and Pixar creative director of Consumer Products, Jen Tan. If the toy maker gets past the mentors, they will move on to The Toy Box where a panel of young, no-nonsense judges that include Sophia Grace Brownlee (“The Ellen Degeneres Show”), Aalyrah Caldwell (“Uncle Buck”), Toby Grey (“The Unexpected John Cena Prank”) and Noah Ritter (“The Ellen Degeneres Show”) decide which toy moves on to the finals and eventually crowned the winner. That winning toy will be made by Mattel and sold exclusively at Toys“R”Us® after the series finale. 

NOAH RITTER, AALYRAH CALDWELL

photo credit: ABC/Jeff Neira

We had the privilege of a Q&A session with one of “The Toy Box” mentors, Jen Tan. She was on her home turf as the creative director of Consumer Products for Pixar. Prior to Pixar, Tan was a project designer at Spin Master Inc., where she developed the “Monsters University” master toy line and other projects, like “Zoobles” and “Little Charmers.” Before that, she was a designer at Disney Consumer Products and worked on the “Toy Story 3” toy line, along with other various products in the outdoor, seasonal toys, games, puzzles and sporting goods categories. 

JIM SILVER, DYLAN LAUREN, JEN TAN

photo credit: ABC/Jeff Neira

When asked what she looks for in a toy, Tan responded, “It’s hard because as an adult, sometimes you forget what it’s like being a kid. And how to play – which is why I love this show. But I always look for something that is not a one trick pony. So you can play with it multiple times and there’s like various ways to play with it”. As a mom who is drowning in toys, I’m all about less toys and more ways to play. Being a mom herself, Tan looks for imaginative toys that spark creativity and prefers simple over tech. When I asked her what her favorite toy of all time was, the Texas Instrument Speak and Spell was her favorite as a child. Coming from parents who are immigrants, she credits it for helping her learn English. 

JIM SILVER, DYLAN LAUREN, JEN TAN, CEDRICK

photo credit: ABC/Jeff Neira

As a television newbie, Tan joked about how she wished she had a makeup and wardrobe team every morning. Right there with her! Tan screened the episode for the first time with a live audience right along with us. She mentioned that the show was filmed in New York and she filmed an episode almost every day for two weeks. Filming wrapped in July or August, to allow time for the product to be made. While she didn’t give us any hint as to which product won the show, she mentioned some really cool Cars 3 toys that will be available soon. We’ll just have to tune in to ABC to see which toy won! 

BABAK, SOPHIA GRACE BROWNLEE, ERIC STONESTREET, AALYRAH CALDWELL, TOBY GREY, NOAH RITTER

photo credit: ABC/Jeff Neira

Watch “The Toy Box” trailer and make sure to tune in on Friday, April 7th at 8pm EDT on ABC Television Network for the premiere! Follow “The Toy Box” on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for more creative fun! 


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I'm Vanessa and it's my mission in life to spread my love of hot glue guns and glitter to others. I suffer from craft ADHD, regularly working on at least 10 projects at the same time and my craft room looks like a tornado hit it. My first craft book, Party in a Jar, was published in 2014. I look forward to crafting with you!

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