Disney, which underestimated the demand for merchandise related to its animation juggernaut Frozen, isn’t making the mistake with its upcoming launch of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, widely anticipated to become one of the biggest releases of 2015.

A Wall Street Journal story explained that retailers are so bullish on Stars Wars toys that they’ve cast aside animation-based franchises like The Peanuts Movie and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Peanuts licensor Iconix Brand Group slashed its sales forecast for Peanuts dolls and toys by $24 million due to overestimating how much Peanuts merchandise it would sell this year. “If they have to make a choice between the new guy on the block, Peanuts and Star Wars, they’re going to choose, and they have chosen, Star Wars,” said Iconix chairman Peter Cuneo.

Star Wars is also eating into the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, resulting in a 20% loss of Turtles shelf space at American retailer Target, which is stocking over 600 Star Wars-related items in its stores. Other boys’ toys like WWE wrestling-themed products have also been impacted. Even Frozen has lost prominent placements this year, although it’s a win-win for Disney since they own both Frozen and Star Wars.

According to analysts quoted in the piece, Star Wars products could generate upwards of $2 billion in sales during this holiday season, and everyone stands to benefit, including retailers, toy manufacturers, and especially the Disney Company. “It’s one of the best entertainment properties that has specifically sold toys,” Richard Barry, chief merchandising officer for Toys ‘R’ Us, told the Wall Street Journal. “We know Disney paid a lot of money for this brand and they really want to work and get payback.”

(Photo: Levent Konuk/Shutterstock.com)

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