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Submitted by Lavalamp 611d ago | news

Kotick on why firing West, Zampella was easy, turning down a CoD film

Joystiq: "Activision CEO Bobby Kotick settled a lawsuit with former employees Frank West and Vince Zampella, both now at EA, in May. Kotick fired West and Zampella in 2010, after learning they were going to bail on their contracts to join EA, Kotick said, and from there, his job was easy." (Bobby Kotick, Call of Duty, Industry, Vince Zampella)

Alternative Sources
majiebeast  +   611d ago
"Kotick said movies based on games rarely do well with fans and could blemish the Call of Duty brand."

I think every game after cod 4 already did that.
#1 (Edited 611d ago ) | Agree(39) | Disagree(8) | Report | Reply
Godmars290  +   611d ago
Isn't that because in almost every case directors feel that they put their own stamp on things? Which basically means straying away from the source material. Then on top of that they try to appeal to the general public all but ignoring the fan base. Also there some inherit disrespect towards games as an entertainment and art medium.
Eyeco  +   611d ago
Its also due to the fact that most directors are not gamers to begin with, whenever a director, or producer, actor, screenwriter are involved in movie adaption of a book, they would have read the book multiple times, and understood it granted there have been some horrible adaptions but thats a testament to how well the book was revised.

When it comes to Videogames however, these guys don't play games, let alone the game they were given to adapt, I mean look at the SMB movie or Resident Evil it's clear the director and writer never played the games, thats why Video game movies always suck a$$ they completely miss the point.
#1.1.1 (Edited 611d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(0) | Report
MikeMyers  +   611d ago
Bobby Kotick; "You find out two executives are planning to break their contracts, keep the money you gave them and steal 40 employees. What do you do? You fire them,"

If only it were that easy.

It's called trying to work with talented people and not smother them or their creativity. It's not all about the dollar. They probably got sick of working within a bubble of just pumping out Call of Duty games on an annual basis. They also probably tried to convince those 40 employees there is life outside of Call of Duty. That's not stealing, that's being rational and acting like someone who got into the craft for the enjoyment and the challenge. Kotick just wants the company to keep making money by milking a popular franchise.

So what you need to do is work 'with' the people you have. You'll get far more production out of happy employees than shoving a contract in the face on daily basis and saying sorry, that's just the way it is.

Egos need to get out of the way. How about running a company that is based on staying profitable but also having a good relationship with its customers? One that respects each other.
blackbeld  +   611d ago
Yep, cod4 is still the best. Played last knight and still enjoy it. MW 2 & 3 are milks and BO's are terrible milky ways
Welshy  +   611d ago
OR! Just maybe they weren't impressed by the direction the franchise was being taken by Activision, wanted to leave and you realised that you were gonna have to pay them off a healthy sum for creating your biggest selling title Mr Kotick? Or perhaps they were still quite happy, but it dawned on you that you actually had to PAY them for their efforts on your companies game?

Nah, can't be that, you're just an average good guy who wants to honourably protect his companies assets /s
2pacalypsenow  +   611d ago
mw2 was good not as good as cod but after mw2 it ruined it
rpd123  +   610d ago
Eh, I like World at War and MW2.
GraveLord  +   611d ago
"You find out two executives are planning to break their contracts, keep the money you gave them and steal 40 employees. What do you do? You fire them," Kotick told The New York Times

Anyone would do the same thing....if you say you wouldn't then you're just blinded by your Call of Duty hate.

Glad they didn't do a Call of Duty film. It would have been horrible.
#2 (Edited 611d ago ) | Agree(10) | Disagree(14) | Report | Reply
modesign  +   611d ago
you instantly lose a court case if you fire them solely on the company violating the terms of the contract, if Acti had proof of what west/zambella were doing, use that evidence AFTER the contract is up to sue them individually.
fei-hung  +   611d ago
I think you need to read this first before jumping to a conclusion.

http://www.gameinformer.com...
Jinkies  +   611d ago
He looks like a squashed up sausage roll
Hufandpuf  +   611d ago
I was playing COD4 last night, and I am amazed at how it looks so close to war. It makes the later games look like Saturday morning cartoons.

Can't wait to see what Weat and Zampella have in store for us at EA.
Chard  +   611d ago
This. We should see what they've been up too early next year.
rickybadman  +   611d ago
Fuck Kotick. If COD was a prostitute, Kotick turned it from a $10000 a night escort into a 100/hr hooker. Five, five fully staffed studios are working on COD games right now. SMH

As much joy as the franchise has brought me, can't wait until the COD bubble burst.
pandehz  +   611d ago
Where do i find these 100/hr hookers?
scotchmouth  +   610d ago
Inner city
SKUD  +   611d ago
He's got to keep their share holders happy. AT ALL COST.
aiBreeze  +   611d ago
It's ironic he's talking crap about firing West and Zampella after Treyarch step it up and save his blushes after the crapfest that was MW3.

West and Zampella and the rest of the IW employees who quit are the only reason cod is where it is today. I presume EA have been letting them go nuts and will most likely release their first game next year alongside the next gen consoles and I'd bet a good load of money that in a good few years time, Kotick will reflect on sacking them and really regret it.
mwjw696  +   611d ago
Sorry Bobby but your ass already got blasted months ago when Gameinformer printed their interview with Sam and West. (GO find it online!) We all know you hired a private investigator to find dirt on them. Triggered a fire alarm to get them to leave the offices. Not to mention attemted to fire them a month before that with no cause. No wander they went and talked to EA. I would have too with old Crazy Bobby running around yelling at me, trying to get me fired. I hope you burn in hell for what youv'e done to COD and the entire video game industry!
#8 (Edited 611d ago ) | Agree(2) | Disagree(1) | Report | Reply
JasonXS12  +   611d ago
Saying that West and Zampella were bailing on Activision for EA and also saying that they'll lose 40 employees who would go with them. Then Kotick sues them and in the end West walks away with a smile and not also that but the fact that more than half the employees of Infinity Ward either left for Respawn or for something else.
Kotick loses nearly a whole studio and a lawsuit. Only if this selfish KoDICK paid them royalties then none of this shit would've happened.

And to me, MW2 was the last good CoD. MW3 by Sledgehammer was trash.
rezzah  +   611d ago
Do you know what game Respawn is working on?
Baka-akaB  +   611d ago
Lol didnt you fire them because they were already going away and poaching your only talent ?

Easy maybe , but they were gone either way , and still went with the best of the team
#10 (Edited 611d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
isyourhouseonfire  +   610d ago
Kotick is a true leader.. It takes guts to put yourself in the line of fire in order to further grow your business through tough decisions.

He deserves to be even higher up in Activision at this point..
PAYNEinc85  +   610d ago
Kotick and Activision were in the wrong from the get go. If not they wouldnt have settled for 39 million dollars before they even went to court.
DJ  +   610d ago
Kotick is just covering for Activision's sake. You don't settle for 39 million dollars with dozens of former employees for no reason. Infinity Ward had royalties withheld and Activision saw the series creators as disposable. It's all in the court documents.
UnholyLight  +   610d ago
I say hit the fucking reset button on CoD. Best entires were WWII and CoD 4. That's it. Next gen will provide some great tech to produce the WWII games we all dreamed of so let it happen!

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