Continuing to bring in creative talent and properties from the outside, Walt Disney Co. has hired Alex Seropian, a founder of the company behind the hit series Halo, as the creative head for its video game division.
In addition, Disney is acquiring Wideload Games, the development studio he runs.
The deal comes just a week after Disney agreed to buy Marvel Entertainment Inc. for $4 billion. In 2007 it acquired online virtual world Club Penguin for $350 million. Lane Merrifield, the general manager of Club Penguin, is now working on other online projects for the company. In 2006 it purchased Pixar for $7.4 billion and put its creative guru, John Lasseter, in charge of all animation at the company.
While the Wideload acquisition is substantially smaller than those deals -- so much so that the value isn't being disclosed -- it further illustrates how the media conglomerate is making strategic purchases to expand its creative capabilities.
Seropian was a founder and the first chief executive of Bungie Studios, which created and produced Halo. Bungie was acquired by Microsoft, which published the Halo games, in 2000. In 2003, he left to start Chicago-based Wideload.