Hollywood cinema and videogames in the 1990s

deadline for submissions: 
January 22, 2024
full name / name of organization: 
Angela Ndalianis / Swinburne University of Technology
contact email: 

Call for papers. We are inviting submissions for a special themed issue of Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies. 

 It will explore the synergies that emerged between Hollywood cinema and videogames in the 1990s. The 1990s was a decade that promised a transformation of game experiences, which was facilitated by the stabilisation of a conglomerated entertainment media industry and the invention of promising 3D technologies like increases in computer memory, powerful video cards, CD-ROMs and haptic force feedback technology. The result was a videogame market that became part of a larger entertainment machine focused on synergies, media convergence, and franchising. Film companies like Lucas Arts and Dreamworks, for example, created the game divisions that produced games such as Medal of Honor (1999), Sam and Max Hit the Road (1993), Full Throttle (1996), and Grim Fandango (1998). Games became films and films became games; and film actors and directors appeared in and directed videogames. Increasingly, due the increased memory capacity of computers and CD-ROMs, games were also able to reproduce the fidelity to reality only previously experience in the cinema and television. It promised to become the new cinema. The latter was obvious in so-called ‘interactive movies’ such as The Dame Was Loaded, Under a Killing Moon, Phantasmagoria, Night Trap and The X-Files Game.

In this special issue, we return to this dynamic period of videogame history and aim to examine the transformations that took place during this era. We encourage contributions from diverse and global perspectives.

Topics for discussion may include:

  • copyright, IP and emerging cross media practices
  • shared film/game productions
  • full motion video, 3D graphics, the CD-ROM and promises of a new cinema
  • multi-path movies
  • the rising popularity of game consoles and/or hand-held gaming
  • Australian game companies in the 1990s era of media convergence
  • The 1990s and advances in home computer technology and greater memory capacity
  • Cinema influence in style, genre and the reliance on film actors and directors
  • The establishment of popular game genres, including first-person shooters, real-time strategy, MMOs, survival horror, fighting games, and RPGs
  • FMV (full motion video) as a game narration technique
  • Built-in haptic technologies
  • Online gaming

Please submit a 500-word abstract & 100 word bio by 22 January 2024 to: Guest Editors Professor Angela Ndalianis and Dr Helen Stuckey andalianis@swin.edu.au and Helen.Stuckey@rmit.edu.au

Authors of accepted abstracts will be notified by 22 March 2024 Full articles will be due 08 August 2024.