Disney Trying to Stop Unauthorized Avengers-Themed Bulletproof Backpacks

Houston-based manufacturer TuffyPacks recently unveiled a line of bulletproof backpacks aimed at children and young students, featuring their favorite characters from movies and TV on the packs. These new "Ballistic Shield" packs were supposed to roll out as Back to School shopping gets underway around the country, but sales spiked over the weekend in the wake of the mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio. The new line includes bags featuring Marvel's Avengers and Disney Princesses but there seems to be one major problem: The Walt Disney Company never signed off on the use of the characters.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Disney is aiming to shut down the sales of these new TuffyPacks items that feature its popular characters.

"None of these products were authorized by Disney, and we are demanding that those behind this stop using our characters or our other intellectual property to promote sales of their merchandise," said a spokesperson for Disney.

The line of TuffyPacks bags also includes a bag featuring characters from Harry Potter, but creator J.K. Rowling didn't respond to THR's request for comment.

TuffyPacks founder and CEO Steve Naremore says that business is always busier in the days following a terror attack like the ones that took place over the weekend, claiming that business spikes 300-500% in those time periods.

1comments

Despite the pushback by Disney, Naremore argues that his company is totally in the right, and that purchasing the fabric in bulk from a licensed retailer means that TuffyPacks isn't responsible for obtaining the license.

"Our inserts are black and look kind of tactical and ballistic," Naremore says. "We use licensed fabric, to try and make them more kid friendly." He adds that Disney isn't endorsing the product and that he and his company "haven't reached out to them for support."