There was quite a bit of commotion at Microsoft's pre-E3 press conference last week when acclaimed film director Steven Spielberg emerged on stage to talk about Project Natal, Microsoft's new camera-based take on motion control. Just because he endorsed the possibilities of Project Natal, however, doesn't mean he's working with Microsoft on making anything, as he's done with Electronic Arts on Boom Blox.
"He's excited about Natal," said Xbox exec. and corporate VP John Schappert in an interview with me after the conference. "I think you should speak to him on specifics."
"We actually went out and showed him [Spielberg] our technology when we were out in LA [Los Angeles] a few months ago," explained Schappert, "and he got so excited that he played Burnout [Paradise] -- I think it was 20 minutes. And he loved it, just loved it. And of course, he's involved in our industry, working with some our partners to make games, so he couldn't be more excited. So when we told him we were going to unveil it on stage, he wanted to be part of it and we're proud to have him."
Microsoft seemed to be hinting if Spielberg were to produce a game for Project Natal, it would come from outside their group. Considering EA has publicly declared support for both Microsoft and Sony's motion initiatives, that seems likely.
"Steven's been an ardent support of controller-free gaming," concluded Schappert. "Everyone can go to the movies, everyone can watch a movie, not everyone can play a game."
Who wouldn't want to play a version of Boom Blox using the Project Natal camera?