Fictional Brands That Crossed Over to Reality

  1. Fictional Brands That Crossed Over to Reality
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    Fictional Brands That Crossed Over to Reality

    German brewer Duff Beer is involved in a trademark dispute with News Corp.'s (NWSA) Twentieth Century Fox Film about whether it can register a European Union trademark for Duff Beer, a fictional brand created for The Simpsons. Even fake brands have real business potential once they become household names. Here are some other franchises that have sprung from fiction.

  2. Holiday Inn
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    Holiday Inn

    Kemmons Wilson founded Holiday Inn (IHG) in 1952 in Memphis, Tenn. He named it after the 1942 musical Holiday Inn, which starred Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire, reported the Los Angeles Times.

    Photograph by Mervyn Penrose Rands/Getty Images
  3. Blue Star Jets
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    Blue Star Jets

    Blue Star Jets, a New York-based jet charter broker founded in 2001, got its name from Wall Street. In the 1987 film, Gordon Gekko sought a commanding share of Bluestar Airlines.
    Photograph by Scott Eells/Bloomberg
  4. 'Spy' magazine
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    'Spy' magazine

    In 1986, Kurt Andersen and Graydon Carter launched Spy, naming the satirical magazine after the publication featured in The Philadelphia Story.

  5. Bubba Gump Shrimp
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    Bubba Gump Shrimp

    Viacom Consumer Products, Viacom’s (VIA) licensing division, opened the first Bubba Gump Shrimp in Monterey, Calif., in 1996, two years after the release of Forrest Gump. The chain is now owned by Landry’s Restaurants and has grown to 33 franchises. It remains the only theme restaurant chain based on a motion picture, according to the company.

    Photograph by Michael Tran/Getty Images
  6. Talkboy
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    Talkboy

    Tiger Electronics turned this tape recorder, originally a prop for Home Alone: 2, into a retail success. Young pranksters around the country wanted these recorders, which could speed up or slow down playback. It retailed for about $30.

  7. Stay Puft
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    Stay Puft

    The adorable marshmallow-man-turned-Godzilla-sized-rampaging-monster from Ghostbusters inspired his own real-life marshmallow product in 2010. It was originally made by FMCG Manufacturing, a San Francisco-based company that licenses products from movies and TV. A new version, by FMCG’s sister company Parallax, is coming out in May 2012.

    Couretsy Stay Puft
  8. Tru Blood
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    Tru Blood

    Thirsty? FMCG Manufacturing also makes a carbonated blood orange soda based on HBO’s (TWX) show True Blood.

    Courtesy Tru Blood
  9. Wonka
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    Wonka

    The Wonka candy brand, based on Roald Dahl’s 1964 children's book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, was launched in 1971, the same year as the first film adaptation. Among the candies it produces are a few based on the story, including Wonka Chocolate and Everlasting Gobstopper. Nestlé USA (NESN) bought the brand in 1988.

  10. Babel Fish
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    Babel Fish

    Babel fish, a creature in Douglas Adams's The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy that a user can stick in the ear to understand any language, was adopted as the name of Yahoo!’s (YHOO) translation application.

    Courtesy Youtube
  11. Scooby Snacks
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    Scooby Snacks

    The best way to reward Scooby-Doo was with a Scooby snack—which became an actual dog treat. The product is made by Del Monte Foods, which licensed the name from Warner Bros. (TWX) Consumer Products and H.J. Heinz (HNZ) in 2001 and which sells the snacks under its Snausages brand.