Betty Boop has been given a J-pop makeover for her appearance on a line of merchandise for Ayumi Hamasaki’s music tour, ‘ayumi hamasaki TROUBLE TOUR 2019-2020 -misunderstood-‘.
A unique, stylised version of the Fleischer Studios character was designed specially for the tour, retaining many of Betty’s hallmark features while ditching her raven kiss curls for blonde hair tied up in a ponytail.
The designers worked closely with Fleischer Studios and King Features, which represents the brand’s global licensing programme, for months to create the new design. J-pop star Ayu was hands-on with creating each piece of her new tour merchandise, which includes Betty Boop T-shirts, pants, a towel, and a bag.
These select pieces are part of an official collaboration with the beloved cartoon character and licensee Rainbowworks Co.,Ltd, brokered by Copyrights Asia, the licensing agent for King Features in Japan,.
Carla Silva, VP and General Manager, Global Head of Licensing for King Features, says: “King Features has a robust licensing program in Japan and has partnered with many artists, music bands and sports teams in the territory. We are excited to continue this tradition by Betty Boop-ifying Ayu and bringing her playful style to her fans in Japan and around the world.”
Ayumi, along with her dancers and some of the audience, wore the specially designed Betty Boop T-shirts during a performance on one of the biggest music programs in Japan broadcast on Fuji TV on July 24. Members of Ayu’s fan club TeamAyu were able to purchase the merchandise a day early and is now available to the public on avex’s official online shop mu-mo.