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Minimodels Smurfs Argentina

Schleich confirms in their book about the company history that they produced
smurfs in South America in the mid 80s.

mmschleich

 

The fact that the Minimodels smurfs were licensed was also confirmed by
Schleich to the SCCI in 1991.

mmscci

The SCCI verifies a few more smurfs as Minimodels in later letters.

 

But when did it all started in Argentina?

Here is an article from August 1984, which tells us about the
increasing populairity of smurf merchandise in Argentina.

mmsomos1

 

In this article you can read that W Berrie Co was very much involved in smurf items sold
in Argentina. Taft Merchandising Group Inc, a sister company to Hanna-Barbera,
was negotiating with different argentinian companies for smurf licenses.

1985 article about Taft: " The licensing of Hanna-Barbera characters, an enterprise that
involves more than 1,500 manufacturers and about 4,500 products, is the largest
merchandising operation of its kind in the world, according to Taft's merchandising
group, which handles the licensing."

mmsomos2

 

So in late 1984 or early 1985 Minimodels got the license to manufacture smurf items.
There was a close connection to W Berrie as you can see on this item by Minimodels.

mmwb

It has both W Berrie Co and Minimodels license on the package.

mmpeyostickers

 

Also smurf puzzles were made by Minimodels.

mmpuzzle

 

1984-1987

It is hard to say exactly which smurfs were made when they had the license,
but probably all with Minimodels markings.

mmmarkingssmurf

 

Here are some of the marked Minimodels.

mmmarkedexamples

mmarkedunder

 

The complete list of smurfs with Minimodels marking.
Click on them to see markings and smurfs.

1 20001 Normal
2 20007 Angry
3 20017 Mirror
4 20018 Crying
5 20019 Flower
6 20029 Coin (Gold/Silver)
7 20033 Clown
8 20042 Chef 
9 20044 Lover
10 20045 Painter
11 20049 Tennis
12 20050 Pointing
13 20053 Ice Lolly
14 20059 Teacher
15 20064 Toothbrush
16 20068 Kicker (Boca Junior/River Plate)
17 20072 Trumpeter
18 20074 King
19 20078 Beer
20 20080 Biscuit
21 20082 Shy
22 20086 Present
23 20087 Axe
24 20097 Injured
25 20100 Cake
26 20101 Fisherman
27 20103 Pupil
28 20104 Pirate
29 20134 Judo
30 20135 Tennis Smurfette
31 20139 Nurse
32 20141 Captain
33 20232 Gargamel (Green or Blue labglass)

Then you can have variations of each mold. For example the Kickers were
painted for the 2 largest clubs Boca Junior and River Plate.

 

After 1987

When Schleich went bancrupt Minimodels lost the license. But they still continued
producing smurfs unlicensed. So new types were sold, but then without markings.

"Only figurines that have the Minimodels stamp are true minimodels Smurfs. There are,
though, many Argentinian Smurf figurines that are made from the exact same mold as the
minimodels - they just don't have the minimodel stamp. Quality-wise, these un-marked
"MiniModels" are identical to real Minimodels figures. This is because Minimodels
Industria Argentina lost their license to produce Smurfs in the 1980s - but apprently the
owner of the molds, Edgardo Broschi, kept on manufacturing them unlicensed, without the
Minimodels logo printed on the figurine."

mmunmarked

 

Here is the list of the unmarked smurfs made by Minimodels. Unlicensed.

1 20020 Gymnast
2 20021 Sleepwalker
3 20026 Sitting
4 20030 Torchbearer
5 20037 Doctor
6 20043 Digger
7 20056 Cardplayer
8 20058 Champion
9 20062 Telephone
10 20072 Trumpeter
11 20111 Cupid
12 20122 Cowboy
13 20140 Secretary
14 20164 Papa Potions
15 20179 Baby white
16 20182 Smurfette with mirror and comb
17 20183 Aerobic
18 20202 Baby pink
19 20203 Baby blue
20 20205 Baby with teddy( white/pink/blue)
21 20206 Baby with Ice Lolly(white/pink/blue)
22 20214 Baby with blocks(white/pink/blue)
23 20498 Johann
24 20499 Pewit

These can be found in different paint variations. Since they were unlicensed they
did not have to obey Peyo "rules" when it came to how to paint them.

 

Hering smurfs made by Minimodels

Personally I am sure a lot of the Hering smurfs with blocked or erased markings coming from
Argentina, actually were made by Minimodels and painted by Minimodels. Not repainted.

Just like when Schleich made smurfs using the old Bully molds,
I am sure Minimodels made smurfs using the Hering molds.

Those were most likely made after both Hering and Minimodels lost the license to
manufacture smurfs. So they are unlicensed smurfs just like the unmarked Minimodels.

But there is a possibility that Minimodels got the Hering molds when they still had
the license and then they are licensed. But then only the ones painted like Peyo approved.

mmheringsmurfs

mmheringmarkings

 

For me these are not Hering smurfs. They are unlicensed Hering smurfs or as I call
them "Hering smurfs made by Minimodels". :) As I wrote before, kind of like
when Schleich continued making smurfs from the Bully molds.

My guess is that all 23 Hering smurfs can be found made and painted by Minimodels??

Some collectors call these Hering smurfs and some Minimodels smurfs. :)

 

Red Telephone made by Minimodels

mmredgoldtele

mmredgoldtelemarking

The Hering mold was used by Minimodels for this variation. Not gold painted.

 

How to recognize a Minimodels smurf

The Minimodels are made of very hard material and almost always
only the tip of the tail is painted.

mmtail

Tailvariations on marked Minimodels. Most of them look like the one in the middle.

 

mmpainttail

This is to show the differences on some of the Hering smurfs.
To the left are the softer Hering marked smurfs made in Brazil.
In the middle are the Hering smurfs with erased markings still sold and made in Brazil.
To the right are the Hering smurfs of hard material, Minimodels paint and tail,
with erased markings and from Argentina. In my opinion made by Minimodels.

 

Fakes from Argentina

fakeargentinasariel

I think only these 6 molds were used but painted in different ways.

Minimodels did not make these fakes.