GamesBeat at The Game Awards agenda: Pixels to pop culture

I’m excited to unveil the near-final agenda for GamesBeat at The Game Awards on December 7 at LA Live’s Grammy Museum in downtown Los Angeles.

We’ll be holding a half a day of panels on gaming’s intersection with culture, such as gaming and Hollywood. Our theme is “Pixels to Pop Culture” with all that suggests. You can sign up here and use this code GBGA23DEAN100 for $100 off the ticket price.

We’ve scrambled to come up with awesome speakers including Owen Mahoney, CEO of Nexon, who recently announced he was stepping down from the role in 2024 after more than a decade of success. You’ll also see Mike Delaet, global head of digital gaming at Mattel, among numerous others below.

GamesBeat will also be spotlighting Games for Love, a Charity that is Easing Suffering , Saving Lives, and Creating Sustainable Futures for Children, and we’ll be doing a LI LIVE part two at our next GB event, backstage with LI top voices in games. You can RSVP here to watch virtually.


GamesBeat at the Game Awards

We invite you to join us in LA for GamesBeat at the Game Awards event this December 7. Reserve your spot now as space is limited!

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I’m proud we’ve been able to come up with stellar speakers in the short planning window after our last event and I’m very excited about what they’re going to talk about in our half-day event. I’ll note that we are not affiliated with The Game Awards. But we believe deeply in its mission of celebrating game communities and we’re happy to start building an industry-focused event within The Game Awards week.

Taking advantage of Los Angeles, we’re bringing together the gaming and entertainment industries under the theme to explore how to create unforgettable experiences for audiences worldwide. Throughout the program, we’ll delve into the evolution of video games as a storytelling medium and its impact on the entertainment industry, from the early days game-movie adaptations to generative AI’s impact today.

Mike DeLaet is global head of gaming at Mattel.
Mike DeLaet is global head of gaming at Mattel.

Our esteemed lineup of speakers includes renowned game designers, Hollywood filmmakers, and industry leaders who will share their insights on how the two industries have influenced each other and collaborated. Beyond that, we’ll also look at gaming’s impact on culture writ large and the intersection of gaming and other cultures — and what happens when gaming dwarfs all that surrounds it.

Through their discussions, attendees will learn how the industry’s best practices in storytelling have helped shape the way video game narratives are developed and delivered to players. They’ll also discover how video game technology has revolutionized the way movies are made and experienced by audiences, as well as provided new source material for Hollywood blockbusters.

This special event offers a unique opportunity for creativity to flourish, where the possibilities are endless. Join us at the intersection of Hollywood and video games, where the lines between the two worlds blur, and exciting collaborations are born.

We’re pleased to announce Karla Reyes, founder and studio director at Anima Interactive, as our emcee. FYI, our descriptions and titles are still a work in progress and will change.

Pixels to Pop Culture

Karla Reyes founder and studio director at Anima Interactive. She is our emcee.

8:50 am – 8:55 am


Karla Reyes, emcee, founder and studio director at Anima Interactive
8:55 am- 9 am


Dean Takahashi, lead writer for GamesBeat

9:00 am – 9:30 am

Why Call of Duty is more than just a game

Johanna Faries is general manager of Call of Duty.
Johanna Faries is general manager of Call of Duty.

Call of Duty just crossed its 20th year as a franchise. As of last year, Activision’s first-person shooter combat franchise had hit $30 billion in lifetime revenue and 425 million premium copies sold to date. But the franchise has had a huge reach into audiences around the globe and become a cultural phenomenon. We talk with Call of Duty GM Johanna Faries about that power and the potential for expansion beyond games.

Johanna Faries, general manager of Call of Duty
Annie Belfield, team lead for console and cross-platform gaming partnerships at TikTok
Dean Takahashi, lead writer for GamesBeat at VentureBeat

9:30 am – 10 am

The Art of the Deal: Understanding the modern marriage of Hollywood and games and the future of gaming and its place in mass entertainment.

Russell Binder is founding director at Striker Entertainment.
Russell Binder is founding director at Striker Entertainment.

Nick Tuosto, managing director at Liontree/Griffin Gaming Partners
Russell Binder, founding partner at Striker Entertainment
Jordan Fragen, GamesBeat writer, moderator

10 am – 10:30 am

Building game franchises: From subculture to mass culture

Naz Amarchi is SVP and GM for Stumble Guys at Scopely.

Mike Delaet, global head of digital games at Mattel
Michael Metzger, partner at Drake Star Partners, moderator
Naz Amarchi, SVP and GM of Stumble Guys at Scopely

10:30 am – 10:40 am

10:40 am – 11:10 am
Building Beyond: Designing immersive and innovative experiences at the frontiers of games and media

Meg Tucker is director of gaming at Google Cloud.

The audience for games and their IPs has never been larger. However, with so much choice, audience attention is at a premium. To develop stand-out experiences, creators are using technologies in new and novel ways to unlock ideas while scaling their operation’s sustainability. In this session, Google Cloud moderates a panel to discuss today’s challenges and opportunities for creating immersive content in the current and coming environment. From tools, cloud, generative AI, and beyond, we’ll discuss how world-class creators are going beyond to deliver experiences across new audiences and formats.

Meg Tucker, director of Games at Google Cloud, moderator
Jeff Skelton, head of technology partnerships at Electronic Arts

11:10 am – 11:40 am

From Pixels to Screens: The challenges and opportunities of game adaptations

Randy Pitchford is founder of Gearbox Entertainment.
Randy Pitchford is founder of Gearbox Entertainment.

Why are adaptations working better than ever? What’s the future opportunity? And how do veterans of the industry transform games into movies, TV shows, comics, and more?

Ari Arad, president of Arad Productions
Randy Pitchford, founder of Gearbox Entertainment

11:40 am – 12:10 pm
Session 6
Games and the power of immersive Storytelling

Danny Bilson is head of USC Games.
Danny Bilson is head of USC Games.

Stories experienced are a gift that games give us. Are those stories more powerful because we own them? Are interactive IP’s more meaningful to its players than traditional media? How will immersive narratives evolve in the next few years?

Danny Bilson, chair of the Interactive Media and Games Division and director of USC Games
Tim Kring, showrunner and writer for variety of shows including Crossing Jordan and Heroes
Mike Minotti, managing editor at GamesBeat, moderator

12:10 pm – 12:40 pm
AI’s impact on games and creators

Richard Browne is a game industry veteran.

David Reitman, head of Reitman Consulting, moderator
Richard Browne, former lead for third-party publishing at Digital Extremes
Erin Ashley Simon, co-owner of XSET, investor in Midwest Games

12:40 pm – 1 pm

Lessons from more than a decade at Nexon

Owen Mahoney, CEO of Nexon
Owen Mahoney, CEO of Nexon

Dean Takahashi, lead writer for GamesBeat, moderator
Owen Mahoney, CEO of Nexon

GamesBeat’s creed when covering the game industry is “where passion meets business.” What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you — not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. Discover our Briefings.


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