At last Thursday's Game Awards, there were quite a few surprising trailers. One of them was for a prehistoric action game that we soon learned was Ark 2, starring Fast & Furious actor Vin Diesel. It turns out appearing in-game is not his only contribution.
In a press release, Ark creator Studio Wildcard announced that Vin Diesel has joined the company as President of Creative Convergence, and will also act as an executive producer on both Ark 2 and Ark: The Animated series. He'll appear in both as Santiago, a new protagonist seen in the Ark 2 reveal trailer.
It's pretty rad to see Vin Diesel lending his likeness to a game, especially one that is not Fast and Furious Crossroads. Celebrities have been involved in gaming before for brand-boosters like the recently announced Xbox Space Jam game jam, but in reent years, it's felt like we've seen a general uptick. Keanu Reeves appeared in Cyberpunk 2077 this year, and upcoming Annapurna-published indie 12 Minutes has a surprisingly star-studded cast. Vin Diesel seems to be taking an interest in the production of the follow-ups to dino-survival game Ark: Survival Evolved on top of appearing in the game; though it probably doesn't hurt that he's reportedly played "[thousands] of hours" of Ark.
I say that because he's apparently already hard at work. As noted by PCgamer, a recent bug fix that went out on the base Ark game was due to a bug report from Vin Diesel himself. That's one way to make a good first impression at the company.
Ark 2 will debut for next-gen platforms alongside the Ark animated series sometime in 2022.