Video game awards show to debut in 2007

The Academy of Interactive Arts and Science has unveiled a new annual television event, a co-venture with Dick Clark Prods. designed to showcase the year’s best video games and the creative teams that made them possible.The announcement came last week during the nonprofit organization’s DICE 2006 Summit in Las Vegas.

“The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences Presents: The Year in Games” is set to debut in first-quarter 2007.

Jules Haimovitz, vice chairman and managing partner of Dick Clark Prods., said the audience for the show is “much, much broader than most people think, at least 12-49.”

He was reluctant to describe the show in detail, however, because the format is unique. “We’re creating a form of video that heretofore hasn’t existed, so it would be like trying to describe a music video to somebody in 1968,” Haimovitz said. “It will be entertaining even to those outside the game crowd.”

AIAS president Joseph Olin agreed the special will be much more than an awards show. Although its selection of games will be based on those titles making the shortlist for the DICE Awards — which honor achievement in many aspects of game creation — the show will focus more on how these titles became worthy of recognition.

Part of the program’s approach will be to incorporate insights from celebrities, consumers and well-known talents in the video game industry.

“Since its inception 10 years ago, the AIAS has honored the innovators of the industry,” Olin said. “The time is right for us to introduce these pioneers to the mass market, and we’re looking forward to making our dream a reality in tandem with Dick Clark Prods. through a major television special.”

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