63 on July 13th (Hurry the hell up George & Steven!)
Wouldn't a great present be the re-dedication of the Starcade re-designed
into a preview space, possibly tied into this:
The movie industry sat up and took notice when George Lucas opened the new Letterman Digital Arts Center, but the event also was significant to those in interactive entertainment. With the move from San Rafael to San Francisco, Lucas' video game division, LucasArts, will begin working even closer with Industrial Light + Magic on developing original games as well as continuing with its successful "Star Wars" and "Indiana Jones" franchises.
Peter Hirschmann, LucasArts vp product development, said the new facility will allow the creative minds behind some of the most revolutionary visual effects in Hollywood to work together with leading game programrs and animators.
"Star Wars: Episode III -- Revenge of the Sith," the current Xbox and PlayStation 2 hit, is an example of things to come with the Letterman facility. LucasArts used digital assets created by ILM for the movie and incorporated them into the world created for the game. All of the digital creations from ILM and LucasArts are archived, which will allow the game company to tap into the virtual backlot for future "Star Wars" games.
LucasArts will revive its "Indiana Jones" video game franchise in 2007 exclusively on such next-generation platforms as Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Sony's PlayStation 3. Additionally, the "Star Wars" franchise will continue to expand on current consoles, PCs and next-generation platforms in the coming years, with some games designed to tie into the two new "Star Wars" TV series Lucas has announced.
Games based on creations from Lucas' new digital animation division also are a possibility down the road. The developer also will introduce original properties like its January action war game, "Mercenaries," which became a hit without any help from Wookiees or brown fedoras.
"While we had two PC games on display at E3, 'Star Wars: Empire at War' and 'Star Wars Galaxies: The Total Experience,' our focus going forward will be on consoles and on next-generation consoles beginning in 2007," Hirschmann says. "George's mandate is to take risks and put quality over quantity."
LucasArts has restructured under president Jim Ward, who concurrently serves as LucasFilm vp marketing and distribution, allowing the game division to partner with LucasFilm and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment in September with the simultaneous release of "Star Wars Battlefront" and the "Star Wars Trilogy" DVD release. A similar marketing marriage is expected this fall with the DVD release of "Revenge of the Sith" and LucasArts' "Star Wars Battlefront II."
Great excuses to finally update STAR TOURS and showcase Indy.