Activision’s excited about the move for a number of reasons,
but gamers should be excited because Eric Hirshberg might have the coolest
freakin’ resume of all time.
Sure he has the executive credentials. As CEO and chief
creative officer of Deutsch LA, he has spent the last 13 years building one of
the most respected advertising and marketing firms in the country.
Cool resume fact #1 – Hirshberg was the mind behind Kevin Butler, the omni-titled “spokesperson” for the PlayStation in Sony’s hit ad campaign, says
Activision-Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick.
“Why that’s so important and what it tells you about his
mindset is [that campaign] recognized that the audience’s voice mattered more
than anything else,” says Kotick. “I think the success of Sony’s marketing came
from having someone whose voice reflected the audience.”
Cool resume fact #2 – Hirshberg directed Bon Jovi’s “Have A Nice Day” music video.
Cool resume fact #3 – He contributed the well-known “Hope Changes Everything”
video to the Obama campaign.
Whether you’re Republican or Democrat and regardless of your
feeling about the current administration, it certainly doesn’t hurt for a
gaming company to have some ties, however tenuous, to the Oval Office –
especially with the Supreme Court hearing arguments in October about whether
states should have the right to regulate the sale of violent video games. Games
like, oh, “Call of Duty” perhaps?
Cool resume fact #4 – The guy has pipes!
Hirschberg has released two independent CDs as a
singer/songwriter. Liz Phair called one of those – "Wish I Was Here"
– "a rare peek behind the male veil" and contributed backing vocals
to one track. Take a listen to the
Let’s face it, you’re probably not gonna hear John
Riccitiello singing anything from “Rock Band” in public – but the fact that you
could hear Hirschberg take on a track or two from “Guitar Hero” is kind of …
Sure, there are plenty of business reasons Hirshberg was hired – and I'll cover those in tomorrow's Daily Variety – but Activision Publishing is definitely getting a CEO with some personality.