Have your children bugged you about the latest Cars 2-branded toy release? If they haven’t, they soon will — after all, the Pixar film is headed to theaters this weekend. Add to that the fact that the brand has built quite a reputation when it comes to film licensing — Cars has raked in $8 billion in toys and other merchandise since the first film’s release in 2006 — and it’s easy to bet that every little tyke’s bedroom will soon be filled with plastic Lightening McQueens and Maters.

But how does Cars 2 compare to other Hollywood projects when it comes to merchandising? Surprisingly, according to numbers compiled for EW by global trade experts Panjiva, it comes second to another popular Pixar brand, Toy Story. Panjiva, which uses the number of monthly shipments to determine a brand’s popularity, notes that, at its peak, a total of 409 shipments of Cars 2 merchandise was imported in May 2011. (Toy Story‘s monthly peak hit 719 shipments in October 2010, shortly after the release of Toy Story 3 and leading up to the holiday season.) But don’t expect it to stay at No. 2 for long: Cars 2 has managed to score the runner-up slot without the film having hit theaters yet, and Panjiva’s numbers don’t even take the first film into consideration. (The company can only calculate shipments for the sequel, and not the franchise as a whole, since a search on the term Cars would yield information on literal vehicles.) Looking at those facts, it’s no surprise Disney anticipates that Cars 2 will top Toy Story to become the largest film licensing property.

And how does it stack up against other recent franchises? Check out the Top 15 list calculated by Panjiva* below.

1. Toy Story: 719 shipments

2. Cars 2: 409 shipments

3. High School Musical: 213 shipments

4. Star Wars: 208 shipments

5. Shrek: 169 shipments

6. Kung Fu Panda: 127 shipments

7. The Dark Knight: 100 shipments

8. Spider-Man: 98 shipments

9. Madagascar: 97 shipments

10. Ice Age: 96 shipments

11. Avatar: 81 shipments

12. Twilight: 74 shipments

13. WALL•E: 52 shipments

14. G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra: 48 shipments

15. Tangled: 37 shipments

*Panjiva only calculates shipments sent from 2007-present.

Follow Kate on Twitter @KateWardEW

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