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Evolving Disney: Graham Hopper Speaks
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Evolving Disney: Graham Hopper Speaks

January 15, 2008 Article Start Previous Page 5 of 5

The market is growing in different ways, and I think that Disney is probably better suited to capitalize on some of the ways it's growing to the younger audience, and the older-than-core audience, and the more casual audience, almost more than you would expect the company to be able to capitalize on the audience that would buy Turok, actually, in a certain sense.

GH: I think you'll be surprised. I think you'll be surprised over the next few years when you see the content coming out. Certainly, a lot of what we do is going to appeal to, in essence, audiences new to gaming. I love games, and I love playing games, and I would like everybody in the world to play games.

I think playing games is like TV was, and like radio and like movies. There's not a person on this planet, when they saw it for the first time, saw a moving image on a screen and said, "I don't want to watch that," or heard a radio and said, "I don't want any piece of that." It's a universal desire, in my opinion, and I think what we're doing and what Nintendo's doing, is a great job of is expanding the experience to more people.

It doesn't diminish, and it doesn't take away from the core gamers' wants. I just think it's a broadening of the entertainment landscape in games that we're happy to be a part of, and I think we will look at these games that the core gamers will like. I'm obviously talking about things here that have not been announced, but I think over the next six to eight months, you'll start to see some things come out of us as we start to show you what the titles are. I think perhaps it will make people sit back and say, "Hmm. Maybe not everything they do is right for me, but they are games that I want to play."

Another shot from Touchstone and Propaganda's upcoming FPS, Turok

If Turok is a glimpse of what could be, on one hand... obviously, this isn't a one-off. I would assume, whether or not the Turok franchise sticks around, you're not just saying, "This is our one time making an M-rated action game, and the rest of the time it's going to be Disney Princess." I think that no one would infer that, probably.

GH: Right. You look at any piece of our business. You look at our movie studio, and we produce movies that are for younger kids, and movies that are for families, and art house movies, if you like, and we produce Jerry Bruckheimer, big blow-em-ups, spectacular summer movies. We do all of those things, and we do them all well. Again, they've each had their own focus, and they're not just a mish-mash of things. They are designed to appeal to different audiences to delight and entertain them, and we're going to do the exact same thing in games. We'll probably just need a little more time for people to see it through.

Right. Getting back to the Touchstone brand question -- Touchstone is a mainstream film brand that's now being pulled over to games to launch Turok. So I'm sort of extrapolating... is there a chance we'll ever see a Miramax game? Like, something a little bit more edgy, or more mature and artsy, do you think?

GH: It's possible. We don't want to maintain a bunch of different labels. I think it's potentially confusing for consumers. Whether it might be Miramax in feel, it may not be labeled as Miramax. It may just go out under Touchstone. Frankly, I think it's more fun to do really interesting things within certain guidelines, also within the Disney brand, as long as it sticks to the Disney brand essence. We know we should be doing some really good stuff there, too.

We're not trying to set out to manage lots of different labels. We simply want to create great games, and then we need an avenue to publish them. And then if a great game like Turok comes along and doesn't fit the Disney brand, we want to be able to do it anyway, and we have Touchstone to do it.

Do you see a lot of limitations on what kind of games you guys could be making?

GH: I think we have certain, if you like -- how should I put this? -- philosophical reservations in the kind of game that we want to make, so I would really not expect to see a Grand Theft Auto game coming from us. It would come from other people, but it won't come from us. But the idea of cutting-edge, high-quality, great entertainment is something you can expect to see from us on an ongoing basis. Some of it's going to be younger, and some of it's going to be older, and some of it's going to be mass, and some will be quirkier. It will be all of those things.

Article Start Previous Page 5 of 5

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