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Round-Up: New Activision CFO, Bits' Spaghetti Western, Blumberg Joins Blue Fang

Today's round-up includes information on a new CFO for Activision, a Sergio Leone license grab from UK developer Bits Studio, and a new virtual lion tamer for Zoo Tyco...
Today's round-up includes information on a new CFO for Activision, a Sergio Leone license grab from UK developer Bits Studio, and a new virtual lion tamer for Zoo Tycoon developer Blue Fang, as well as today's product news and Gamasutra job postings. - Activision has named Thomas Tippl as its new Chief Financial Officer, replacing former CFO William Chardavoyne. Prior to his hiring at Activision, Tippl was a manager at Procter and Gamble. "Thomas' extensive credentials and my personal experience working with him in the past give me confidence that he is the right person to build on our track record of growth and take us to the next level of leadership in the video game industry," said Activision publishing CEO Michael Griffith, also formerly of Proctor and Gamble. Departing CFO Chardavoyne has left the company to pursue other interests. - Bits Studio, developers of the recent Constantine movie-based game, have secured the license to Sergio Leone's "Man With No Name" trilogy, which includes A Fistful of Dollars; A Few Dollars More; and The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. The first game of a planned series will follow the plot of The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, whose plot comes chronologically first in the series. Series star Clint Eastwood is as yet unattached to the project, but Bits has also licensed Ennio Morricone's film score for the games. The first game is due to ship in 2006 for PC, PS2, Xbox, and PSP. - Blue Fang Games, developers of Zoo Tycoon, has named Bruce Blumberg as director of its Synthetic Animal Team, which will focus on creating realistic and intelligent virtual animal characters. Prior to his hiring at Blue Fang Games, Blumberg was an Associate Professor at the MIT Media Laboratory in Cambridge, MA. "My passion is to create creatures whose behavior, form and underlying architecture not only informs our understanding of the natural intelligence displayed by animals and ultimately ourselves, but that also touches a person interacting with them on a profound personal level," said Blumberg. - Also updated today: product news including Kynogon's announcement of Kynapse AI for the PSP, BGT's shipping of AI.implant 3.5, and the latest Gamasutra job postings, from companies including Activision/Raven Software, Autodesk Inc, Firefly Studios, IGN Entertainment, iKuni inc, Macrovision Trymedia Games, Pyro Studios, Sakson & Taylor, trollz.com, and more.

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