Monday, September 10, 2007

once more, with feeling...

Final day of my long-overdue recap of Comic Con 2007!


This morning has been ridiculous. Esther and I got to the convention center at about 9:30 this morning - though it wasn't supposed to open until 10am, they opened up the main floor about 45 minutes early. We found our friend Brian and managed to get the freebies we wanted the most - the giant WB tote bad, the "Vote Petrelli" buttons (I wish I'd gotten more), and the 300 shield. We also got a ton of stickers and other trinkets - and Tshirts! Now we're in the longest line I've ever seen, trying to get in to see the entire cast of Heroes. It's at 12:45, we got in line at 11... and it was all the way around the building! Dear god.


So, we didn't make it into the Heroes panel. I'm super bummed. We go to Hall H where we intend to camp out until the Superbad panel at the end of the day. We caught the tail end of the Rogue panel, where Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman were talking about The Strangers. Then Neil Marshall (The Descent) talked about the new movie he wrote/directed called Doomsday, which looked like a pretty cool post-apocalyptic thrilla starring Malcolm McDowell.


The Disney/Pixar panel was kind of interesting... first there was a preview of some of the upcoming footage from The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, including a live video feed of the director and title character from where they were filming. Then they showed a long clip from WALL-E and character bios. The sound designer (who was the "voice" of R2D2) gave a presentation of how and why the characters sound the way they do. The main brain behind Pixar was there, to great applause.

Then, there was a Marvel panel, where they showed Liv Tyler and Ed Norton from The Incredible Hulk, followed by a panel for Iron Man with debut footage and trailer. Jon Favreau, Gwyneth Paltrow, Terence Howard, and Robert Downey, Jr. were all there, and then STAN LEE came onstage! I know I'm not the target audience for a lot of comic book movies, because I'm often not that familiar with the source material, but this movie looks like it is going to be so much damn fun.

The Columbia / Screen Gems panel was the highlight. Ali Larter and Milla Jovovich were onstage with debut footage from the new Resident Evil movie. AND BOB STENCIL WAS THERE AGAIN. Then, Josh Hartnett, Ben Foster, Sam Raimi, the director, and the graphic novel creators of 30 Days of Night came and showed an extended clip of a gruesome scene from the movie. Esther worked for Mandate pictures this summer, which worked on 30 Days of Night, and she said that the graphic novel and the screenplay were some of the scariest things she'd ever seen. I'm generally not really going to seek out non-zombie horror films, but this one looks great.

Then, of course, there was the highlight of my entire trip to San Diego. Esther and I staked out the best seats we could grab in Hall H, and we were SOOOOCLOOOOOOSE to Michael Cera that we thought we might puke. When he finally came onstage I stood up to scream, and my knees gave out. That's why all my pictures of Judd Apatow, Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, and Mr. George Michael Bluth are all so blurry! Esther even had the cojones to go ask a question...I almost died.

Apatow also showed clips from Walk Hard, his new musician-biopic-satire starring John C. Reilly and Jenna Fischer. It looks very funny, and I'm always happy to see Reilly given a lot of screen time. That man is a gem; he's like, second-in-line after Philip Seymour Hoffman in terms of ugly men who are super hot because of their talent.


So, there are a few things that for some reason I didn't write down, but I remember happening and I have some pictures of. One is that Michel Gondry's new film with Mos Def and Jack Black, Be Kind, Rewind, looks really fun. The other is that Zack Snyder came to talk about 2009's adaptation of Watchmen. I can't wait to come to Comic Con again, because it was so much fun and I honestly feel like I can reference it every day. Also, I bought the graphic novels V for Vendetta and Watchmen, because I am really interested in learning more about this whole world, which is sure to enhance the experience the next time I go to the 'Con.



Now, for more of my long-overdue recap of Comic Con 2007!


So, this morning was the Warner Bros. panel. First, they showed a reel from Get Smart, and then the director brought out some dude from Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, MASI OKA!, THE ROCK!, and STEVE CARELL!!! It was excellent. At some point I went "WOOOO!" very loudly, and The Rock said, "Some guy is like, catcalling, haha." I am that guy! There was a video greeting from Nicole Kidman who is in Australia filming Australia! with Baz Luhrmann. Then they showed a clip of her movie with Daniel Craig, Invasion, a remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. There was also a trailer for Trick 'R Treat, which looks lame but has Anna Paquin in it. The trailer for 10,000 B.C. looked like it might be pretty entertaining, actually. Shannyn Sossamon, Ed Burns, and the director of One Missed Call answered questions that nobody had about their movie. Shannyn looked high. Then they showed the trailer for Whiteout, and Joel Silver, the artist of the graphic novel, and the director, and star Kate Beckinsale came out, and made the movie actually look really good. Now, we're just waiting in the same hall for "trailer park," followed by Clive Owen and Shoot 'Em Up. I think it's interesting how the buses around here all have nerdy bus ads for stuff like Stargate Atlantis, Spaceballs: The Animated Series, and Dead Like Me: the movie (!)...


Here is a list of links to all the trailers that they showed during trailer park: The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep, Mr. Woodcock, Eastern Promises, I Know Who Killed Me (LOL), Resident Evil: Extinction, Rush Hour 3, Bee Movie, The Heartbreak Kid, Balls of Fury, Right at Your Door (this looks cool), Dragon Wars, Across the Universe, The Kingdom, The Bourne Ultimatum, Vantage Point, American Gangster, 30 Days of Night, Superbad, Shoot 'Em Up, The Golden Compass, and Stardust


So, watching the trailers was a nice diversion, and then after that we saw writer/director Michael Davis and star Clive Owen (mee-ow) present their film Shoot 'Em Up. The film screened twice last night, but we were way too exhausted and hungry to be able to go see it. They showed a five-minute clip of the movie (Clive Owen delivering a baby while slaughtering a huge group of nameless hitmen. Monica Bellucci and Paul Giamatti are in it as well. It looks amazing! Michael Davis was a really cool nerd who was just about to abandon hopes of making it in Hollywood when his script got picked up by New Line. They showed a second clip and also some of the animated "storyboard" that Davis had made in order to pitch his movie. Then we navigated the floor for a little bit, buying some crappy and exorbitantly overpriced sandwich. We got back to the place where Kevin Smith is going to be talking later. We caught the tail end of the Blade Runner anniversary edition DVD discussion, and now we're sitting in a "Star Wars at 30" thing.


Despite the fact that I have never seen the original Star Wars movies, the LucasFilms/ILM presentation was still kind of neat. Mostly they showed trailers for upcoming video games, but they also showed two short clips from the upcoming hour-long season premiere of Family Guy which is a satire of Star Wars. Seth McFarlane actually came onstage to talk about it, which was pretty funny. They also showed some on-the-set footage from Indiana Jones 4, which made me feel better about missed the Paramount panel yesterday. Next up: Kevin Smith!!!


So, last night's Kevin Smith panel was really cool. He came onstage and basically did stand-up got about half an hour before screening for us the pilot of this fall's new show Reaper, which Smith directs. It's about a slacker 21 year old whose parents sold his soul to the devil, and now he has to capture escaped souls and send them back to Hell. Then, the writers (two women, yay!) and two of the cast members came onstage for a Q&A, but obviously pretty much every question from the audience was about Kevin Smith's previous work. One guy asked to hear a funny story, and we were all treated to a tale about the time his lab started having sex with his toy dachshund. Another man started trash talking Smith's earlier work, which brought on a hilarious tirade about not making fun of your betters. Even a deaf guy with a translator got in with poking fun at Smith. After that was all said and done, we all went out to Little Italy for some great pasta and gelato, and then crashed pretty hard.


Sunday, September 9, 2007

oh jeez

Okay, so the first week of senior year of college is behind me, and now I need to get used to the actual schedule of having classes and work and still trying to spend some of my free time to blog instead of just watching TV on DVD all day long. So, okay, let me try to jump back in headfirst. As far as school is concerned, I am taking James Joyce, Film and Literature, Media Sketchbook, and writing my thesis! Looking forward to it all!

Now, first I'm going to transcribe the journal I took during COMIC CON all those weeks ago, and then in the next few days I'm going to try to catch up on all of the movies I've recently seen. Now, get ready for day one of the LONG overdue Comic Con 2007 recap...


"You don't understand, Michael Cera is my soulmate."
"No. Michael Cera is my soulmate."
"... Michael Cera split his soul into horcruxes so that he could be both of our soulmates."

So began our conversation the night before we left for Comic Con. We had a little bit of a late start leaving from Beverly Hills this morning, so we didn't get to San Diego until about 11:30am. We checked into our hotel, took the shuttle to the Convention Center, and cut in line with a friend in order to claim our badges. Then we cut in line to try to get into the Paramount Pictures panel. Though we had another friend saving us seats inside the hall, apparently we haadn't cut far enough ahead in line because we were about 25 people past the point where we couldn't make it in. But now we're waiting in line to get into the same hall for the Lionsgate panel. We won't be able to stay for the duration of that, because we'll have to leave early to get in line for the LOST panel, which is upstairs in Ballroom 20.


So, the Lionsgate panel was okay...we saw Dane Cook and Jessica Alba talking about Good Luck Chuck. But the most important part was Bob Stencil, who asked a really lame question of Jessica Alba, dressed in a 70s outfit complete with airline pilot's wings and a pornstache. As Esther and I were obsessing over him, we left the hall afterwards and saw him on the escalator! We were like totally geeky fangirls and I took a picture of him doing this great pose, then Lizzie, Esther, and I took a great posed photo with him. Now we're sitting in the LOST season 4 room! He said he was staying at the Ramada Inn, room 3312. Also, Optimus Prime in a Su-Fi t-shirt asked Dane Cook a question.


So, the LOST panel was amazing. A few days ago, it was released that Harold Perrineau will be returning to the cast full-time playing Michael. The creators of the show had intended to release that news today at Comic Con, but its early release did not make it an less thrilling when he walked onstage (!) to join Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof. (Lizzie, Esther, and I were the only ones who stood up and screamed our heads off.) They answered audience questions and then showed a great 2-minute clip of "lost" Dharma Initiative training footage where that Asian guy said "Station 6, the Orchid, is not a botanical station. Sorry you've had to lie to your family," and the he was holding a bunny marked with the number 15 which seemed to have a "smart" clone which knocked a light bulb off the ceiling. "They've learned!" shouted that Asian guy. And there were some split-second images of a tall office building and a frame with some unrecognizable words, one being "Jacob"!

Then, we went to dinner at the Corvette Diner. We split a basket of spicy fried pickles, a peanut-butter-bacon-cheeseburger, and all ordered entrees and milkshakes. The '50s style diner was very kitsch (Bazooka gum instead of after-dinner mints), and the waitresses were too much - doing little birthday girls' hair with plastic straws, dancing, making balloon animals, and having alternate personas named Doris, etc. It felt like that time Brenda Walsh worked at the Peach Pit. I'm so full I feel like dying.