Hironobu Sakaguchi, John Milius sneak onto E3 agenda

Show organizers tout Sneak Peeks session with King Kong, Godfather, and Call of Duty 2; but some big names were overlooked.

Last week, the Entertainment Software Association updated the industry with news of the E3 Conference Program's top-drawing session, Sneak Peeks (which GameSpot has webcast for the past three years).

With three big games set to drive that session--The Godfather, King Kong, and the sequel to Call of Duty--it was a natural choice to promote. But over the weekend, some additional names snuck onto the E3 Expo Web site with surprisingly little fanfare.

The two biggest names in the lineup are those of Hironobu Sakaguchi (shown at left in photo), the creator and once-lead producer of SquareSoft's Final Fantasy franchise, and screenwriter and director John Milius.

Sakaguchi has been in the news recently due to the commitment he made to bring two role-playing games to the next-gen Xbox. The deal, an exclusive, will see two upcoming games from Mistwalker (the studio he founded with Final Fantasy composer Nobuo Uematsu) land on Xbox 2 consoles in Japan.

According to the conference's Web site, this is Sakaguchi's first conference appearance ever in North America (although readers may recall he was in attendance at the 2000 E3 and spoke briefly when he was given his AIAS Hall of Fame award).

The next unsung standout joining the program is screenwriter and director John Milius. Milius, too, made headlines recently after Electronic Arts came clean with the news that he was lending his scriptwriting talents to EA's upcoming Medal of Honor: European Assault.

Milius is a Hollywood heavyweight, having picked up an Academy Award nomination for the Apocalypse Now script he cowrote with Francis Ford Coppola and having written and directed Dillinger (1973), Conan the Barbarian (1982), and Red Dawn (1984).

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