Variety and Pixel United will host the first-ever Leaders in Gaming & Entertainment Breakfast on Oct. 4. The in-person breakfast, held in Los Angeles, will bring together some of the biggest names in the gaming industry.
Marc Merrill, co-founder and president of games for Riot Games, and Shauna Spenley, president of Riot Games Entertainment, will participate in a keynote conversation, moderated by Andrew Wallenstein, president and chief media analyst of Variety Intelligence Platform, about the successful screen crossovers of Riot’s video games, such as their Emmy-winning animated series “Arcane: League of Legends.”
Michael Lang, CEO of Pixel United, will be in conversation with Variety Co-Editor-in-Chief Cynthia Littleton about his vision for the mobile games industry, identifying opportunities for the wider entertainment industry to align with the passionate gaming community.
The breakfast will also feature the panel discussion Building a Franchise Through Gaming and Experiential Entertainment featuring Sean Shoptaw, senior VP at Walt Disney Games; Gio Hunt, VP of Oculus Studios for Meta; David Baronoff, founder and chief cross media officer for Bad Robot Games; and Helen Chiang, corporate VP of Minecraft Franchise. Moderated by Variety Intelligence Platform Correspondent and Media Analyst Heidi Chung, the panel will explore the intersection between gaming and film/TV, and address how the industries are collaborating to create an expanding universe for content.
“As the number one entertainment business news brand, Variety understands the significance in creating a forum for a dialogue between the entertainment industry and the video gaming industry,” said Dea Lawrence, chief operating and marketing officer at Variety. “Variety is thrilled to partner with Pixel United on this inaugural event which will examine trends in gaming that will benefit the larger entertainment industry.”
“The video games industry is an incredibly important part of the fabric of the broader entertainment landscape and Pixel United is proud to help shine a spotlight on this powerful segment,” Lang said. “As a global mobile-first video games company engaging millions of players around the world every day, we understand the meaningful results that can be achieved when world-class gaming content and unrivaled fandom converge with other areas of the entertainment industry.”
On the same day, Variety will publish its inaugural Entertainment Gaming Leaders report, spotlighting the most impactful executives working at the intersection of gaming and entertainment. Variety’s Entertainment Gaming Leaders report is an up-to-the-minute look at the key figures driving this dynamic intersection, where nothing less than a visual media revolution is taking place.
The breakfast will be covered in print, on Variety.com and across Variety’s social media.