It has been reported that longtime studio head of Rockstar North, Leslie Benzies, is no longer with the company.
Rockstar confirmed the news with Kotaku that Benzies had taken a break from the company on September 1, 2014, and decided not to return to the company. “Leslie helped us build an incredible team that will continue to create great experiences for our fans,” the statement reads. “Leslie will always be a friend to the company and, of course, we are going to miss him but we wish him the absolute best for the future.”
Rockstar North is still being currently run by Aaron Garbut and Rob Nelson as they will assume the management role. Both men are long-time employees of the company and have been credited with being art directors on several of Rockstar’s major releases.
Benzies career as a video game programmer started at DMA Design (the company that would become Rockstar North). After releasing Space Station Silicon Valley on the Nintendo 64, he started assembling the team that would create Grand Theft Auto. In 2014, he was inducted into the Academy of Interactive Arts & Science’s Hall of Fame along with Sam and Dan Houser.
Whatever the future may hold for Leslie Benzies, we wish him the best of luck.
I am an aspiring journalist with dreams to make it to the conventions and play with the big boys of the game industry. When I’m not writing about games, I’m playing and enjoying them. Some say that I have an obsession, but I don’t. I have a really expensive hobby.