Call of Duty Movies, Skylanders TV Show in the Works
Publisher hires former Disney executive to run its new Activision Blizzard Studios team.
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Gaming giant Activision Blizzard has announced the formation of a new business division focused on bringing its numerous popular franchises to film and television. The unit is called Activision Blizzard Studios, and its first projects will be Call of Duty movies and a Skylanders TV show.
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Leading Activision Blizzard Studios is Nick van Dyk, who formerly worked at Disney for more than nine years as its senior vice president.
The Skylanders TV show is called Skylanders Academy. Based on the franchise, the animated program will feature the voices of some popular actors and celebrities and its showrunner is Eric Rogers (Futurama). The toys-to-life Skylanders series has generated $3 billion to date, including 250 million toy sales.
Skylanders Academy includes features the following voice talent:
- Justin Long -- Spyro
- Ashley Tisdale -- Stealth Elf
- Jonathan Banks -- Eruptor
- Norm Mcdonald -- Glumshanks
- Harland Williams -- unspecified character
- Richard Horvitz -- unspecified character
There are fewer details available about the Call of Duty movies, however. Activision only said that it is creating a "robust cinematic universe" for multiple movies, which could hit theaters (or digital channels) in 2018 or 2019.
Activision did not provide any details about actors that might appear in the Call of Duty movies, who might direct them, or when they'll be released.
The formation of Activision Blizzard Studios comes just two weeks after the company announced another brand-new division focused entirely on competitive gaming. That business group is being headed up by former ESPN CEO Steve Bornstein and Major League Gaming co-founder Mike Sepso.
The Call of Duty movies and Skylanders TV show make up Activision Blizzard Studios' "initial" lineup. Activision mentioned Diablo, StarCraft, and Hearthstone in its announcement, but no specific movie or TV show plans for these franchises were announced.
In other major Activision news, the company paid $5.9 billion to acquire Candy Crush developer King.
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