Posted by Philip on July 16, 2003 at 12:42 PM CST
Interview with Scott Schellhase, Executive Vice President of Code 3 Collectibles

How about we get started with your background...

First off, are you a Star Wars fan? It's ok if you're not, but fans are always interested.

I have always loved the Star Wars movies and remember going to see them when I was younger. I couldnít say that Iím a hard core fan like the many people I met at last yearís Celebration II. We do have fans on our staff, though, and they provide invaluable input. One of those people is Richard Adona our Customer Service Manager. He will be at Comic-con.

I am a huge fan of die cast models. The launch of our Star Wars product line has been a great and exciting challenge to work on. We are producing the first ever large scale die cast models of vehicles from the Star Wars saga. The Millennium Falcon model has over 400 parts!

How did you come to be Executive Vice President of Code 3 Collectibles? Were you part of Funrise when Code 3 collectibles was launched?

Yes, I was the National Sales Manager for Funrise when we realized that there was a need in the market for quality, detailed authentic die cast replicas. Before Funrise, I worked in the die cast industry. It was a natural fit for me to head up Code 3 Collectibles.

I am the proud owner of one of your Skywalker Ranch firetrucks. I'd like to commend you on the detail and quality of it. Which by the way, is detailed here in a new photo archive page for those who have not yet seen Code 3's work!

How did the Skywalker Ranch firetruck replica come about? Were you contacted or did you contact Lucasfilm, or otherwise?

Lucasfilm came into our NY showroom two years ago during Toy Fair. They were very impressed with the detail and workmanship of our Fire and Rescue line. The Skywalker Ranch Fire Department has a mystique in the fire fighting industry because it is so difficult to get on the Ranch to take pictures.

With the level of detail in your collectibles, and their price points, clearly Code 3 has targeted the higher end collector market.

Is the addition of the Star Wars license as a result of the firetruck replica? Can you tell me a bit about that?

We actually began working on both licenses at the same time; the fire truck just made it to the market faster.

I was delighted to see Code 3 Collectibles would be showing the Millennium Falcon at San Diego Comic-Con. Will you be able to let fans get their hands on it?

Yes. There will be one model out from under the glass for fans to see.

How did you select the Falcon designer(s)?

Based on their expertise in translating difficult detail into manufacturable die-cast.

Will the designer(s) be at Comic-Con?

The designers will not be there, but the Product Development Manager, Audrey Wells, will be there. She oversaw the entire process and worked with both the designers and with Lucasfilm.

Will you be announcing any other Star Wars vehicles at the show? If so, can you share them now?

Our next release will be the X-wing. We hope to have an early pre-production sample on display.

Do you have a target number of Star Wars vehicles you'd like to release annually?

We donít have an exact number. The release schedule will take into consideration the fans demand for items weighed against how much a collector can realistically purchase in one year.

Concerning the distribution of Star Wars products... Direct only or will you have some dealers as well? If so, who?

As of now, the product is only available direct. We are in the process of determining our dealer base.

I'd like to thank Scott for taking the time to answer these questions!

At the start of September Brickset, the Rebelscum of the LEGO collecting community, canvassed their readers to find out what should the next Ultimate Collector Series, or Master Builder Series, set be. Their answers, which came in thick and fast, were collated and the top fifteen suggestions were polled and Rebelscum gets the duty finding out what you would like to see as the next original Ultimate Collector Series set. Pick your favourite from the options below!
AT-AT Walker
Jedi Temple on Coruscant
A-wing Interceptor
Mos Eisley Cantina
Venator-class Star Destroyer
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