Former Acclaim boss in rescue bid for UK studios

Rod Cousens, formerly CEO of now-bankrupt publisher Acclaim, is believed to be at the helm of a plan to acquire the company's UK studios and build a new publisher utilising some of Acclaim's major brands and franchises.

According to a report in UK videogame retail trade magazine MCV, Cousens has teamed up with Europlay Capital Advisers to acquire the Cheltenham and Manchester studios, along with a number of work-in-progress games, back catalogue and intellectual properties.

Europlay is run by Sean Brennan and Mark Dyne, and has also worked on games industry deals including the sale of TDK Interactive to Take Two and of Shiny Entertainment to Atari, as well as other entertainment industry work such as the partial sale of the Jim Henson Company (home of the Muppets franchise) to former UPN CEO Dean Valentine.

MCV's report suggests that the new company has acquired four titles, including Interview with a Made Man and Heist, and hopes to sign former Acclaim property Juiced - the rights to which have reverted to development management firm Fund 4 Games in light of Acclaim's bankruptcy.

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