Welcome to Barely Related, a conversational Friday column that presents the non-gaming news stories that we, the Joystiq staff, have been talking about over the past week. And no, we're not stopping our focus on industry and gaming news. Think of this as your casual weekly recap of interesting (and mostly geeky) news, presented just in time to fill your brain with things to discuss at all of those weekend shindigs.
Grab a fresh drink, lean back in your armchair, and get ready to talk nerdy with us.
The new Terminator movie is actually, really, honestly called Terminator: Genisys
Kids these days, they love spelling things phonetically, especially if you can throw in an extra Y or two. The Terminator reboot from Paramount Pictures is named Terminator: Genisys, as Arnold Schwarzenegger revealed via Instagram. (Kids love the Instagram, too.) The accompanying caption reads:
"Hasta la vista, baby. I want to thank the cast and crew of @TerminatorGenisys for a fantastic shoot. It was challenging, it was fun, and it was rewarding. From our director to the producers, from the camera team to catering, from visual effects to hair and makeup – we couldn't have done it without you. I can't wait to see our finished project and I know we'll remind the fans why they fell in love with the Terminator. On July 1, 2015, I'll be back."
That's the plan, at least. Disney plans to install "a far greater Star Wars presence" in its theme parks, with a first look at the new plans next year. This is driven by the cold, hard fact that attractions branded with established franchises perform better, Disney CEO Bob Iger said during a financial call this week.
"When we grow Star Wars' presence, which we will do significantly, you will see better bets being made that will pay off for us than were made in the past," he said.
As long as there's a chance that we could ride a giant tauntaun in the near future, this decision sounds great. The new Star Wars movie, for what it's worth, launches on December 18, 2015.
Rocket Raccoon creator gets a private viewing of Guardians of the Galaxy
Bill Mantlo created Rocket Racoon, the trigger-happy furball in Guardians of the Galaxy, in 1976 with fellow writer Keith Giffen. In 1992, Mantlo was hit by a car while rollerblading, leaving him with irreparable brain damage. He now lives in a 24-hour care facility, and getting to the theater to see Rocket Raccoon in action is tough.
But Marvel made sure that Mantlo didn't miss out – the company arranged for a private Guardians of the Galaxy viewing in Mantlo's room, and it seems to have gone well. Mantlo's brother posted the following message on Facebook:
"Bill thoroughly enjoyed it, giving it his HIGHEST COMPLIMENT (the BIG "THUMB'S UP!"), and when the credits rolled, his face was locked into the HUGEST SMILE I HAVE EVER SEEN HIM WEAR (along with one or two tears of joy)! This was the GREATEST DAY OF THE LAST 22 YEARS for me, our family, and most importantly, BILL MANTLO!"
This is Penguin Books' 50th anniversary cover for Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Douglas Adams' Dirk Gently series optioned for TV
IDW and Ideate Media have optioned worldwide rights to Douglas Adams' Dirk Gently series in hopes of securing a TV run. Chronicle screenwriter Max Landis is writing the pilot and executive producing.
Dirk Gently is an accidentally OK detective who ends up investigating odd paranormal happenings that threaten life on Earth (as these things often do). If you're a fan of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and haven't read Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency or The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul, go pick up or download a copy. If you're not a fan of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, get out. There's nothing for you here.
Everything you want to know about Archer season 6
Seriously, if you don't want to know a lot of things about the next season of Archer, don't read that article. Creator Adam Reed spills the beans about specific plot points involving babies, the new season's return to an office-spy format, old cyborg characters coming back and a potential finale idea that may or may not be serious.
In terms of the show's overall staying power, Reed said, "I'd like to keep doing it 'til they lock the doors and don't let me into the office anymore. It's sort of a dream job, so I'd like to do it for a long, long time. I think someone else will make that decision for me! The bar's going to close at some point but I'll be the drunk guy there being like, "No! One more season!" They'll have to kick me out."
Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice release date moves for no reason at all
Warner Bros. shifted the release date of Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice from May 6, 2016, to March 25, 2016, for absolutely no reason. Just because it wanted to.
In other news, Marvel's Captain America 3 is still scheduled to hit theaters on May 6, 2016.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 alternate ending is a doozy
In an alternate ending that was cut from The Amazing Spider-Man 2, a character from Peter's past shows up in a weird, death-defying twist. This person ends up giving Peter the "with great power comes great responsibility" speech – and if you know the origin of that one, it's probably not the person you're thinking.
Another reason to adore JK Rowling
Cassidy Stay, 15, survived a shooting that left her father, mother and four siblings dead, and during their memorial service last month, she quoted Albus Dumbledore, saying, "Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light."
Following her speech, friends created the "We want JK Rowling to meet Cassidy Stay" Facebook page. Rowling answered by sending Stay a personalized letter in the voice of Dumbledore and written in purple ink. She also sent along a wand, a Hogwarts acceptance letter, a school supply list and a signed copy of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
Magic can't undo the past, but kindness can certainly make the present a little more bearable.
Give us this bicycle now
Denny is the winner of a five-city competition to create the world's next great urban utility bike, and it should hit stores in 2015. We'll take 12, please.
Frozen director tackles A Wrinkle in Time for Disney
Frozen writer and co-director Jennifer Lee's next project for Disney is A Wrinkle in Time, the classic children's story by American author Madeleine L'Engle. Lee's approach focuses on a "strong female-driven narrative," Variety reports.
A Wrinkle in Time combines science fiction, fantasy, sorcery and supernatural elements as it follows a group of kids traveling the universe to find their father. Think Doctor Who meets The Chronicles of Narnia.
[Image: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Penguin Books]