Skydance, a diversified media company that creates elevated, event-level entertainment for global audiences, today announced that it has acquired leading game developer The Workshop Entertainment, Inc. and launched Skydance Interactive, LLC, a dedicated subsidiary that will create and own original video games and virtual reality experiences.
The acquisition provides Skydance Media with the capability to vertically integrate its intellectual property across the feature film, television and interactive platforms. The company will self-publish and digitally distribute Skydance Interactive titles for the leading VR hardware, including Oculus, HTC Vive and PlayStation VR. While The Workshop will continue to offer its robust console game services, this transaction allows the company to evolve into a leading-edge virtual reality developer as Skydance Interactive.
“We believe that virtual reality is the perfect medium by which to create an interactive platform where immersive storytelling intersects with active gameplay, which has long been a goal of ours at Skydance Media,” said David Ellison, Chief Executive Officer of Skydance Media. “We are making a significant investment in virtual reality with the launch of Skydance Interactive, which allows us not only to develop and publish original games but also to extend the reach of our existing franchises. I am proud that we have found our ideal partners in The Workshop and am thrilled to welcome Peter, Chris, and the rest of the team into the Skydance family.”
“Skydance clearly shares our belief at The Workshop that virtual reality will profoundly affect the human experience,” added Peter Akemann, Chief Executive Officer of Skydance Interactive. “It is absolutely exhilarating to be on the front lines of the revolution developing cutting-edge gaming experiences and there is no one with whom we would rather be in business than the innovative team at Skydance.”
The Workshop was launched in 2008 by the co-founder and original members of Treyarch, which sold to Activision in 2001 and now leads the Call of Duty franchise. Peter Akemann co-founded Treyarch in 1995, where he oversaw the development of the company’s cross-platform graphics engine. He has shipped over 20 titles across first, second and next-generation platforms. Chris Busse, General Manager of The Workshop, helped Peter lead the expansion of the Treyarch team from 3 to over 200 employees. Their combined experience spans the breadth of acclaimed franchise games such as The Evil Within, Armored Warfare, Free Realms, Medal of Honor and Spiderman, among others.
About Skydance Media
Skydance is a diversified media company founded by David Ellison in 2010 to create elevated, event-level entertainment for global audiences. The Company brings to life stories of immersive worlds across platforms, including feature film, television, gaming and digital. Among Skydance Media’s commercially and critically successful feature films are Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, Terminator Genisys, World War Z, Jack Reacher, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, Star Trek Into Darkness and True Grit. Its 2015 feature films, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation and Terminator Genisys, together grossed over $1 billion at the worldwide box office. Skydance’s feature film slate includes Star Trek Beyond on July 22, 2016, Jack Reacher: Never Go Back on October 21, 2016, Geostorm on January 13, 2017 and Life on March 24, 2017. Skydance Media’s rapidly growing and critically acclaimed television division launched in 2013. The Company’s television slate now features a variety of projects across a number of networks, including Emmy-nominated Grace and Frankie and Altered Carbon on Netflix, Red Mars on Spike TV and Jack Ryan on Amazon.
About The Workshop
The Workshop is a video game development studio founded in January of 2008 by Peter Akemann (President), Chris Busse (General Manager) and Charles Tolman (CTO). The team debuted with the PS3 game Sorcery in May of 2012 and has since developed Mr. Torgue’s Campaign of Carnage for Borderlands 2, Rekoil: Liberator for Xbox 360, The Evil Within for PS4 and Xbox One, Armored Warfare PvE and Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons for PS4 and Xbox One, among other major upcoming titles. The Workshop currently has over 50 developers and is based in Marina del Rey, California. Akemann previously founded the studio Treyarch, which sold to Activision in 2001.