EALA COO new force at LucasArts

Darrell Rodriguez departs Los Angeles studio to take reins of Star Wars publisher as president.

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Shortly before the D.I.C.E. Summit in early February, LucasArts announced that Jim Ward, its president of nearly four years, was abruptly resigning for personal reasons. The news came as a shock, given that he had been credited with overseeing the rebuilding of LucasArts' internal development following a major restructuring." He also helped spearhead the new team's first project, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, which is being billed as a successor to the multibillion-dollar Star Wars film trilogies.

Now, two months later, LucasArts has named Ward's successor. The new president of the game arm of filmmaker George Lucas' multimedia empire is Darrell Rodriguez, the current Chief Operating Officer of Electronic Arts' Los Angeles studio. There, he helped oversee development of such games as SSX on Tour, Medal of Honor: Airborne, Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars, and The Lord of the Rings: Battle for Middle Earth II. A Bay Area native, he holds an MBA from the University of California-Berkley.

Rodriguez begins work at LucasArts in mid-April, ahead of a series of major multiplatform releases from LucasArts. June will see Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures ship, followed by Star Wars: The Force Unleashed in the third quarter, and Fracture during the holidays.

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