Former Uncharted creative director Amy Hennig has joined a film production company, Skydance Media, to run a new interactive division, which Skydance boasts will "shape the future of interactive media," apparently. I'm glad none of my employers have had such high expectations.
Until now, Skydance has largely been focused on film and TV, like Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan, Terminator: Dark Fate and the new Top Gun. It has, however, created a pair of VR games, including a Walking Dead spin-off set in New Orleans.
According to Skydance, the new division will use streaming platforms to get gamers and non-gamers to play story-focused interactive series. On Twitter, Hennig said that the creative team will be exploring "new frontiers in interactive storytelling," though no games have been announced yet.
Hennig is joined by former EA producer Julian Beak, who serves as vice president, continuing a partnership that started with the unfortunately cancelled Star Wars game, Ragtag. From the small amount we saw, it was shaping up to be a less conventional Star Wars romp than what we got with Respawn's Jedi: Fallen Order.
Before Ragtag was cancelled, Hennig was writer and director on the first three Uncharted games, and before that the Soul Reaver and Legacy of Kain series. At EA, where she also wrote for Battlefield Hardline, her skills seemed a bit wasted, but a storytelling-focused studio seems like a much better fit.
"I've been in the game industry for 30 years now," Hennig said in the announcement. "I've seen so many different evolution and revolutions of creative content. And fundamentally, I came to it as a storyteller. I was potentially a filmmaker. When I was going to school, I wanted to be a writer. And so I found my creative home in games."
Hennig believes that gaming is currently missing short form, interactive narratives, while developers are pressured to make giant open-world live service games. The former is what Hennig specialises in, though, and what the new studio will be working on.