So Geoff Keighley is in Death Stranding (opens in new tab), appearing in a cameo as a 'Prepper', a mission giving hologram. It's not a huge surprise given their close friendship, but it throws fuel on a popular fire - the theory that anyone that's been to visit the Tokyo studio is basically going to appear in the game.
It's pretty obvious Kojima's been adding people he likes or admires to Death Stranding for a while: Guillermo del Toro and Nicolas Winding Refn, are two obvious examples. They've had their faces scanned, to be voiced and performed by other actors, and if Kojima's done it with them, he's probably done it with others. Either people less announcement trailer worthy, or just not revealed yet. He's likely been collecting faces like some sort of digital Ed Gein, adding them like lampshades to his game house.
In fact we know he's scanning in celebs for... some reason. That's Baby Driver/Spaced director Edgar Wright visiting the studio up there in the top image. "Thank you for scanning me" he proudly writes on the wall. Why? Wright can't do anything with a scan of his face and it's a hell of a waste to set up all that gear, get in all the expert people who know how to use it, and digitise someone just to show off.
This is what it looked like when Death Stranding Star Normal Reedus was scanned in:
That's not the usual 'look at this cool thing I got' type of showing off, it's 'am I getting overtime' levels of someone else's problem. That said, the fact that Geoff Keighley, Guillermo del Toro and Nicolas Winding Refn are all in the game as digital puppets having their strings pulled by other actors is proof that A) Kojima wants them there, and B) they are into the idea. The other thing to take into account is that your average movie director or musician probably isn't going to nip over to see a game studio for fun when they have, like, actual jobs to be getting on with.
So with that in mind, lets take a look at all the people that have visited Kojima Productions for no reason whatsoever...
Edgar Wright finally made it to come visit Kojima Productions👍🦀🌈🐟🐋 pic.twitter.com/DNXwVjzjKeAugust 27, 2018
Members of CHVRCHES (Lauren, Iain and Martin) has visited Kojima Productions.👍🌈🦀🐟☔️😍 pic.twitter.com/eJfdETVyzuMarch 1, 2019
It was good to meet Conan O'Brie again. He came to visit at Kojima Productions and was kind enough to sign on our kitchen wall. We have the same age👍🌈🦀🐟🐋 pic.twitter.com/5rlhcyf2ivSeptember 7, 2018
Shota Sometani and Rinko Kikuchi visited Kojima Productions. Thank you very much. 👍🌈 pic.twitter.com/ArE9lHHTNGJuly 9, 2018
Thens there's a whole collection of famous film directors who took time out to visit Kojima, for coffee and a catch up presumably.
Park Chan-wook visited Kojima Productions! pic.twitter.com/dE2sXdrjEpFebruary 10, 2017
My favorite director, such a genius, J.A. Bayona @FilmBayona came from Spain to visit Kojima Productions. Thank you very much! pic.twitter.com/mmudesuv8wJune 25, 2018
A genius Norwegian filmmaker TOMMY WIRKOLA known as “Whay Happened to Monday”, “Hensley & Gretel”, and “Dead Snow” has visited me today. Thank you. pic.twitter.com/JfJwUrQA78December 15, 2017
So @HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN let me play DEATH STRANDING❗️The world is next-level immaculate. It’s like freebasing pure Kojima & Shinkawa. Remember when FURY ROAD blew you away but also made you (in the best-most-thankful way) ask “wtf” how does this miracle exist? YOU. ARE. NOT. READY❗️ pic.twitter.com/RkVxtZCcbjFebruary 6, 2019
So that's Park Chan-wook, probably most famous for SnowPiercer, as well as The Vengeance trilogy which included Oldboy (opens in new tab). JA Bayona best known for The Orphanage, A Monster Calls and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (opens in new tab). Tommy Wirkola, whose best known films are probably Dead Snow (opens in new tab) and Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters (opens in new tab). And, finally, Kong: Skull Island (opens in new tab) director, Jordan Vogt-Roberts, who admittedly could have visited because of his attachment to the Metal Gear Solid movie but also, no.
And then there are the developers who visited. Okay, it's easier to explain them away as work related (especially Guerrilla's Angie Smets from the studio that provided Kojima's game engine). But at this point it's safe to assume the face scanner's just set up by the exit like an airport metal detector. Plus, most developers are insanely busy and can't exactly jet across the work for the hell of it.
Thanks Jade Raymond for visiting our studio. 👍🌈😍 pic.twitter.com/E0dKuf6szEJuly 25, 2019
Today I got to spend a couple of hours with @HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN. He was so very kind to give me a tour of his magnificent studio and share some insight to what he is working on.❤️ pic.twitter.com/7eHq1u4VujDecember 3, 2018
Ted Price, the founder of INSOMNIAC, the long-established studio who recently made the smash hit game, Spiderman (PS4) has visited Kojima Productions! pic.twitter.com/yA6xp9O45jDecember 4, 2018
Masahiro Sakurai visited Kojima Productions. pic.twitter.com/o2KWhpl7gVDecember 5, 2018
All will becomes clear when Death Stranding releases on November 8 but, the chances are, you should be prepared for more than a few 'wait, is that...?' moments.