Ok, few more comments on the whole endcap thing...
I actually have a lot of experience in category management at retail stores, so wanted to shed some light on a few of these comments.
#1 - While some retailers offer displays at no charge, the vast majority of them are paid for. In this case, it was likely part of the deal to carry the exclusives (either a fixed cost reduction or lower price per case on Hasbro's behalf in exchange for display space). For action figures, it would rarely have consisted of just the exclusive figures - this is a kick back to Hasbro of sorts to help them sell other SW as well as the new stuff.
#2 - I have never heard of an "optional" display endcap. That's like saying someone will give you $100,000 for a car and you can just decide later if you want to give it to them or not. There are varying levels of compliance by store, but they are not optional and stores can be fined by manufacturers for not putting them up if they are caught. If there was a sticker on the box indicating a display, it wasn't just by chance or a "suggestion" from Hasbro.
#3 - The "color instruction sheet" you referred to is called a planogram. These are built from software that can manage all of the product dimensions and determine how much space is available (HXWXD) and number of products that will fit each slot.
#4 - A category management team is responsible for submitting pictures for retailers, but they are frequently out of date. The shelf plan is worked on and finalized months before it is set, so manufacturers rarely have time to put the most current product into the photo. In many cases there is just a generic box that holds the information of the product. There are product names and product codes to tell sales people what product goes where - they don't just go by the pictures. They're actually incredibly simple to follow. I don't see any indicationthat Hasbro dropped the ball on this.
#5 - The endcap was obviously meant to be comprised of lots of different Star Wars items, not just the TRU exclusives. Not having the items in stock is not an excuse - they can still build an endcap for the product they have available. Retailers do have the flexibility to alter the planogram if/when items sell out, so they could easily have expanded the Legends or CW pegs if needed. Better to offer Hasbro a display of old product than no display at all.
#6 - Store reps are responsible for dozens of stores - sometimes hundreds. If Hasbro has to pay someone time x gas to go check the display in every store, then you better expect to start paying a lot more for figures. That cost goes up exponentially if you're thinking the Hasbro reps should be the ones building the displays.
I watch things like sunday ad features and displays pretty closely because I deal with merchandising support at my work all the time. From everything I've seen and read, this was a giant cluster on TRU's behalf. When Target puts up a display, I have seen pallets readied the evening before and a team of 3-4 people builds it as soon as the store closes. I sure wouldn't spend my merchandising dollars on TRU support after something like this.