E3 07 dated, detailed

Newly renamed E3 Media and Business Summit will be held July 11-13 at a Santa Monica venue and a variety of Los Angeles hotel locations.

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The Entertainment Software Association today clarified a number of significant details of the new, downsized Electronic Entertainment Expo, now renamed the E3 Media and Business Summit. In July, the ESA said the megasized and circuslike Electronic Entertainment Expo, held in the massive Los Angeles Convention Center, would be "evolving into a more intimate event."

Today, the ESA announced that such intimacy will be found in Barker Hangar, a 40,000-square-foot property located in Santa Monica, California. The organization also confirmed that the event will no longer be held in May and will now run from July 11 to 13. While the total square footage of the hanger is significant, E3 organizers say they will only sell 16,000 square feet of usable space to exhibitors.

No information on the "Big Three" pre-E3 press conferences traditionally staged by Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony--which are not organized by the ESA--was available as of press time, though the July announcement indicated they would continue.

The ESA confirmed the event would be invitation-only and be open to both ESA members and nonmembers. "The new E3 event will be more personal, efficient, and focused, and it will provide the top stakeholders who make games, sell games, and cover games streamlined access to the people and products they most need to see," ESA president Doug Lowenstein said in a statement.

Display areas in the hangar will be limited to between 100 and 400 square feet and be much more modest than the massive booths that dominated E3s of yore. Complementing the Barker Hangar location--"where attendees will be able to casually test drive the featured video games planned for the coming holiday season and beyond," according to the ESA--will be hotel suite and meeting room sessions at a number of additional Santa Monica and Los Angeles locations.

The ESA said there will also be a number of lunchtime panels and executive presentations, as well as a serious games component to the event.

"By combining suite-based meetings with the software showcase in a controlled and business-like environment," Lowenstein said, "we believe we will successfully fulfill our primary objective of giving high-level media the best of all worlds--the chance to engage in highly personal, one-on-one dialogue with leading game company executives, as well as the chance to demo games on their own time."

Bookings for the E3 Media and Business Summit are expected to begin within the next 30 days, according to the ESA.

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