We’ve been tracking the crossover between Hollywood and gaming culture for a few years, as both industries have continued to influence the other’s content and collective primetime audiences. Now, the game-tainment overlap is picking up steam as entertainment companies ramp up gaming services and gaming companies look to join the entertainment industry.

Major entertainment brands are now adding gaming to their offerings. In January, Microsoft acquired video game publisher Activision Blizzard in a record-breaking sale, an indication of the influence of gaming in the tech industry. That same month, Netflix announced its plan to build out its own gaming unit from the ground up. Co-founder and co-CEO Reed Hastings shared his aspirations for Netflix gaming, saying, “When mobile gaming is world leading, and we’re some of the best producers, like where we are in film today…then you should ask what’s next,” in Netflix’s Q4 earnings conference call.

The gaming sector has made its own moves in the industry crossover. Global gaming company Entain announced its plan in January to invest more than $130 million into immersive gaming and sports experiences for the future of entertainment. Ennovate, the innovation lab, is a partner with MGM resorts and Bet MGM, and plans to develop NFTs, virtual reality and augmented reality experiences. CEO Jette Nygaard-Andersen said the company plans to “lead the way with new, exciting products and experiences for customers and use our cutting-edge technology to pioneer innovations in sport, gaming and interactive entertainment for the metaverse.”

In February, Sony announced plans to launch more than ten live service games by March 2026, just days after its acquisition of gaming company Bungie. Sony CFO Hiroki Totoki said “the strategic significance of this acquisition lies not only in obtaining the highly successful Destiny franchise, as well as major new IP Bungie is currently developing, but also incorporating into the Sony group the expertise and technologies Bungie has developed in the live game services space.”

WEB Dreams 08 Arts Dream Childhood
Courtesy of Dreams by PlayStation

Big-name acquisitions are driving new entertainment formats in the industry. In January, Sony Pictures Classics announced plans for a movie made using the PlayStation game-builder Dreams. The animated movie, titled "A Winter’s Journey," will include live actors, computer generated and hand-painted animation characters. This will be the first feature film to use Dreams technology.

As the metaverse develops, multiple crossovers could point to a future of interactive entertainment that allows for co-creation. Right now, TikTok is being used for marketing campaigns for major motion pictures like Spider Man: No Way Home, and it shows promise in the future of feature film marketing. In a blog post titled “The Future of Entertainment Marketing,” the platform reported that 69% of users have co-created content related to a show or movie. Even Hollywood agencies, such as the Creative Artists Agency, are betting on TikTok, targeting creatives through the app to recruit new talent.

As gaming and entertainment companies continue to overlap, they point to a future of metaverse entertainment where audiences can interact with content in new ways, perhaps even allowing for co-creation.

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