Exclusive: Comic Con - day 1 Maura's report
By Maura Reilly Jul 21, 2006, 12:53 GMT
Hello fellow geeks, fanboys and fangirls. Frank (Woodward) and I divvied up the most interesting sounding panels at this year’s Comic Con here in lovely San Diego. Here is a quick overview of what I sat in on today:
'Flyboys': I’ll have to admit that traffic kept me from getting to this one on time. I can share with you the few tidbits I heard as they were wrapping things up. This World War I action-adventure tale of aviators starring James Franco, Martin Henderson, and David Ellison is directed by Tony Bill and produced by Dean Devlin. The film’s star James Franco actually got his pilot license for this film. David Ellison already had his flying license. In fact passed his flying test the same day he failed his driving test. Look for this high-flying adventure on September 29th.
Sony Animation: Three and a half years in the making Sony’s very first animated feature film 'Open Season' was highlighted with director Jill Culton present as well as writer Steve Moore (creator of the comic strip “In the Bleachers”) and the Visual Effects Supervisor Doug Ikeler.
'Open Season'’s story came about as Steve Moore began reflecting on newspaper articles about bears that became accustomed to foraging for food in resort towns then were suddenly transported by humans to the wild.
In this film Boog the Bear, voiced by Martin Lawrence is a domesticated grizzly who by day does a wilderness show and by night lives in the Ranger’s garage complete with his own doggie bed. After aiding a mule deer named Elliot (Ashton Kutcher), Elliot decides to return the favor and introduces his new friend to life outside suburbia. The two find themselves on the business end of a hunter’s gun, (Gary Sinise) and enlist the help of the rest of the forest critters to once again take back the wild from the hunters.
Culton wanted to give this film a real old-fashioned Warner Brothers cartoon feel to it. Ikeler paid homage to the Disney background artist Ivan Earl and created a world that was graphic and rich. It is also the first appearance of a mullet in an animated feature.
'Surf’s Up, A True Story' is a “documentary” about one penguin’s dream to leave dreary Shiverpool Antarctica and surf the big waves. Shia LeBeouf voices Cody Maverick, the lone rebel on a stretch of ice with big dreams.
Universal Monsters 75th Anniversary: Uncle Forrey reminisced about seeing 'Frankenstein' for the first time in 1931 on a panel that included Jeff Bond of CFQ magazine, Artist Basil Gogos, author John Flynn, and actor Dan Roebuck.
Forrey Ackerman told how there was an ambulance parked outside the Orpheum Theater in San Francisco and two nurses were stationed inside. As the movie began an announcement was made, well it was actually a warning to the audience that the film there were about to see was truly horrifying and those of weaker constitutions had best think twice about staying.
During the film’s climatic scene one woman ran screaming from the theater. When Ackerman stayed to see the next two subsequent screenings, the same woman ran from the theater at the same scene. It was then that Forrey learned of Hollywood marketing. Another interesting tidbit he shared was that in 1939 a theater in Beverly Hills ran a revival of Frankenstein and Dracula when they theater owner had no new films to screen. The demand was so high that they ran the movies non-stop, 24 hours a day.
The book Universal Monsters 75th Anniversary is available now.
Poor David Arquette was not having a good afternoon.
On his way to discuss his directorial debut in the slasher/political film 'The Tripper' with Joe Harris the screenwriter, Steve Niles executive Producer and cast member Chris Nelson he lost his tape with the scenes he was going to show.
He kept the room happy with anecdotes about his experiences as a first-time director, glowing talk about Jason Mewes, impressions of Thomas Jane and Lukas Hass (both in the film) and autographs, photos, and hugs for fans. The movie is about a Regan obsessed sociopath who takes out his frustrations on a group of unsuspecting festival going hippies.
His wife Courtney Cox-Arquette has a cameo. When asked if she dies, Arquette’s response was “rather violently.” I could tell you more, but we were all held to a solemn oath as a newly formed “family” to not reveal the secrets discussed that hour. Watch for the missing footage to show up on-line somewhere. ;-)
Frank and I both attended the Pan’s Labrynth panel with Guillermo Del Toro and Doug Jones. I will be transcribing this panel very soon for you enjoyment. That’s it for today. Thanks for reading.