Throughout the month of January, The ToonSeum is proud to present a series of film screenings celebrating the birthday of one of the world’s most accomplished artists, Hayao Miyazaki. The filmmaker turns 70 years old on January 5th.
Often called the “Walt Disney of Japan,” Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli reinvigorated the Japanese animation industry in the 1980’s and 90’s with a string of genre-defying masterpieces that would become international hits. But it wasn’t until the success of 2001’s Spirited Away that most American audiences began to discover Miyazaki’s work. Largely through the efforts of PIXAR’s John Lasseter (who lists Miyazaki as not only a huge influence but a great friend), many of Miyazaki’s films have enjoyed broad theatrical and DVD releases.
Miyazaki’s films have changed the way the world thinks about animation. Typified by wild flights of fantasy, political and ecological commentary, and meticulous and breathtakingly beautiful hand-drawn and watercolor animation, Miyazaki films often cast a spell over viewers young and old. While combining nuanced story-telling techniques and a vibrant, naturalistic mis en scene, Miyazaki’s animation often subverts the viewer’s expectations, with calm, reflective moments that give way to unpredictable twists and turns. Most notably, Miyazaki’s protagonists are often strong, confident female characters just as his villains are often complicated, sympathetic victims of circumstance.
The following films will be screened with discussion and production notes:
January 13 at 7:00pm – Castle in the Sky (Laputa) (1986). After a daring escape from sky pirates, a young girl teams up with an orphaned miner to uncover the secrets of a magical city floating in the clouds. The second of Miyazaki’s first feature length films, Laputa is full of sweeping action and vibrant characters.
January 22 at 3:00pm – My Neighbor Totoro (1988). Miyazaki’s pastoral masterpiece is a story of two young girls coping with their mother’s illness and resultant move to rural Japan. There they encounter a Totoro, a gentle forest spirit that guides and protects them through the turbulent time. Totoro is the antithesis of American children’s movies: quiet, observant, and humane. Named by the British Film Institute as one of the Greatest Children’s Movies of All Time.
January 27 at 7:00pm – Princess Mononoke (1998) Roger Ebert called it “the Star Wars of animated film,” and he wasn’t exaggerating. The boldest and darkest of Miyazaki’s films, Mononoke is a complex Buddhist parable in which spiritual forces do battle with ragged human imperialists. Lush and provocative, Mononoke marks Miyazaki’s first foray into computer-generated imagery, accentuating several scenes with bizarre movement, though every single cel remained hand-drawn.
In addition to the screenings, the ToonSeum will conduct a poll allowing fans to vote for their favorite Miyazaki films and characters.
Films are all family-friendly, however Princess Mononoke contains adult themes and war-related violence. Admission for the screenings by donation only.
The programming schedule for Friday is up, but how do you choose? This is a day that brings us Hayao Miyazaki with John Lasseter, Robert Kirkman with Todd McFarlane, Joss Whedon with Eliza Dushku, Robert Englund with Clive Barker, and James Cameron with Peter Jackson. Not to mention Neil Gaiman, Tyrese Gibson, Jim Caviezel, Mike Mignola, Robert Rodriguez, Joe Quesada, Tim Burton, Elijah Wood, Jennifer Connelly, Dan DiDio, David Boreanaz, Rebecca Romijn, and Danny DeVito…the list goes on and on.
Here are some panels that caught my eye:
10:00-12:30 Warner Bros.— Join WB for a look at their much anticipated slate of upcoming genre films, including Where The Wild Things Are, The Book of Eli, A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Box, Jonah Hex, and Sherlock Holmes. Hall H
10:15-11:15 Farscape 10th Anniversary Panel— Brian Henson (executive producer/ director), Rockne O’Bannon (creator/writer), Ben Browder (John Crichton) and Claudia Black (Aeryn Sun) reunite to celebrate the beginning of this landmark series, share exciting news, and answer questions Room 6BCF
10:30-11:30 Coraline— Visionary director and screenwriter Henry Selick (The Nightmare Before Christmas) and Newbery Medal-winning author Neil Gaiman discuss the making of the LAIKA/Focus Features 2009 breakout animated hit film Coraline. In celebration of Universal Studio’s Blu-ray Hi-Def and DVD release of the critically acclaimed stop-motion film, Selick and Gaiman will be joined by lead animator and LAIKA CEO/president Travis Knight, producer Bill Mechanic (CEO of Pandemonium and producer of Dark Water and The New World), character fabrication supervisor Georgina Hayns (Corpse Bride), and voice talent Keith David (Crash). Panelists will offer an in-depth, behind-the-scenes glimpse at how this astonishing and suspenseful adventure—the first stop-motion animated feature originally produced in stereoscopic 3D—was painstakingly brought to life. The panel wis moderated by IGN movies/DVD editor-in-chief Eric Moro. Room 6A
10:30-11:30 Stargate Universe— A new chapter of the Stargate saga begins with the Syfy original series Stargate Universe. Stars Robert Carlyle (Dr. Nicholas Rush), Brian J. Smith (1st Lt. Matthew Scott), Elyse Levesque (Chloe Armstrong), David Blue (Eli Wallace), Alaina Huffman (1st Lt. Tamara Johansen), Jamil Walker Smith (Master Sergeant Ronald Greer), and Ming-Na (Camile Wray) join series co-creators Brad Wright and Robert Cooper to take you through a gate you’ve never seen before. Ballroom 20
11:00-12:00 Spotlight on Gene Colan— He’s the dean of comic book artists, the master of shadows and a hallmark of the Marvel Age of Comics! Comic-Con special guest Gene Colan is back at the big show, talking with Mark Evanier and co-host Marv Wolfman about his legendary career in comics. Room 8
11:30-12:30 Disney Press: Comics and Graphic Novels— Jordan Mechner, Prince of Persia creator and writer of the upcoming Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time graphic novel, and artists Todd McFarlane (Spawn), Cameron Stewart (Seaguy), Bernard Chang (Wonder Woman), and Tommy Lee Edwards (Daredevil) for a discussion and Q&A session. Plus, get a sneak peek at the upcoming Prince of Perisa: The Sands of Time graphic novel, and an advance look at the book’s connections to the secrets within the upcoming Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time movie. Panelists will also look into the future and announce some of Disney Book Group’s upcoming graphic novels for 2010. Room 3
11:30-12:30 Image Comics Show— The world’s greatest creator-owned comics publisher returns to San Diego with a flurry of announcements, including an exclusive look at the biggest crossover event of the year: Image United by creators Robert Kirkman (Walking Dead), Todd McFarlane (Spawn), and Rob Liefeld (Youngblood). In addition, Image superstars Frank Cho (Liberty Meadows), Tyrese Gibson (Mayhem), and Ben Templesmith (Fell) give you the first word on many of their upcoming projects. The Image Comics Show will be the first place to get your first sneak peek at Whilce Portacio’s superhero series emerging from Image United, Fortress! Room 5AB
11:30-12:30 AMC: The Prisoner— Jim Caviezel (The Passion of the Christ), Jamie Campbell-Bower (Sweeney Todd, The Twilight Saga: New Moon), Lennie James (Jericho), writer Bill Gallagher, and Vlad Wolynetz (VP, production, series & movies for AMC) discuss the making of AMC’s miniseries The Prisoner, a re-imagining of the 1960s cult classic by the late Patrick McGoohan, premiering in November on AMC. Join Jim, Jamie, Lennie, Bill and Vlad for a one-on-one Q&A session and an official sneak preview of the six-part mini-series The Prisoner. Room 6BCF
11:45-12:45 FlashForward— Be among the first to see exclusive, never-before-seen footage and scenes from upcoming episodes of ABC’s new show FlashForward presented by David S. Goyer (Batman Begins), Brannon Braga (24), and Marc Guggenheim (Eli Stone). Joining them on the panel are cast members including Joseph Fiennes (Shakespeare in Love) and John Cho (Star Trek). And look for a surprise guest that you won’t want to miss! Room 6A
11:45-12:45 Caprica/Battlestar Galactica: The Plan— The present meets the past as the makers of Battlestar Galactica deliver the highly anticipated Syfy original series, Caprica and the 2-hour event, Battlestar Galactica: The Plan, directed by Edward James Olmos. This is your chance to get the inside scoop on these exciting projects and see two generations of Adamas on stage together for the first time. Executive producers Ronald D. Moore, David Eick, and Jane Espenson sit down with Caprica star Esai Morales (Joseph Adama) and Battlestar Galactica‘s Edward James Olmos (Admiral William Adama), director of The Plan, to reveal the truth about these two new chapters in the mythology of BSG. Ballroom 20
12:00-1:00 Radical Publishing Creators Panel— Radical Publishing presents an all-star lineup with plenty of surprises and special announcements, courtesy of president and publisher Barry Levine. Panel guests include the legendary Jim Steranko, cover artist for the flagship Hercules series, which will soon be a major motion picture from Spyglass Entertainment and Peter Berg’s (Dune, Hancock) production company Film 44; Arthur Suydam (Marvel Zombies), creator and writer for Cholly & Flytrap: Center City; Steve Niles (30 Days of Night), creator and writer for the science fiction/horror hybrid hit City of Dust: A Philip Khrome Story; Jimmy Palmiotti (Jonah Hex), creator/co-writer for Time Bomb; David Hine (Civil War: X-Men), writer of FVZA: Federal Vampire and Zombie Agency; Rick Remender (Punisher), creator and writer for the futuristic crime thriller The Last Days of American Crime; Nick Simmons (A&E’s Gene Simmons Family Jewels), son of Gene Simmons as well as the creator, writer and artist of Incarnate; Zombie Studios CEO Mark Long, novelist Nick Sagan (Idlewild trilogy) and M. Zachary Sherman of the critically acclaimed science fiction epic Shrapnel: Aristeia Rising; Sam Sarkar, creator and writer for Caliber, soon to be a major motion picture produced by Johnny Depp’s Infinitum Nihil; and Steve Pugh, writer and illustrator of the supernatural science fiction series based on a story by Warren Ellis, Hotwire: Requiem for the Dead. Room 4
12:00-1:30 That ’70s Panel— Comic-Con started in the nostalgic decade of the 1970s, and this panel—moderated by Mark Evanier—takes a look at the comics industry way back then. Joining Mark are comic book superstars writer/editor Marv Wolfman, and Comic-Con special guests Steve Leialoha (Howard the Duck), Mike Royer (inker, Jack Kirby’s Fourth World books), Doug Moench (writer, Moon Knight, Master of Kung Fu), Nicola Cuti (writer, co-creator, E-Man), and a few surprises. Bell-bottoms optional. Room 8
12:00-1:00 CBLDF Master Sessions: Expressionistic Atmosphere with Mike Mignola— No one establishes visually sophisticated atmosphere like Hellboy creator Mike Mignola. Utilizing a unique sense of design and composition, Mignola’s dark environments have earned him the acclaim of artists and fans around the world. Bring your sketchbooks and follow along as he walks you through his creative process at this live art demonstration! The original art from this session will be auctioned off on Saturday night at the CBLDF’s auction! Room 30CDE
12:00-1:00 The Middle Special Pilot Screening— Emmy winner Patricia Heaton (Everybody Loves Raymond) makes her Comic-Con debut to introduce a special screening of The Middle, a new comedy about raising a family and lowering your expectations. Frankie Heck (Heaton) is a superhero. Well, no, not an actual superhero—but sometimes it seems as though getting her kids out the door for school every morning is a superheroic act. Middle aged, middle class, and living in the middle of the country, this harried wife and working mother of three uses her wry wit and sense of humor to try to get her family through each day intact. The Middle will air Wednesdays at 8:30 PM ET/PT on the ABC Television Network this fall, premiering September 30. Indigo Ballroom / Hilton Bayfront
12:45-1:45 Spartacus: Blood and Sand— The world of gladiators comes to life as the Roman Republic’s most brutal fighters clash in the ultimate arena. Lucy Lawless (Xena: Warrior Princess, Battlestar Galactica) introduces star Andy Whitfield, along with actor Peter Mensah (300, Avatar) and executive producers Rob Tapert (Evil Dead 1-2, Drag Me to Hell) and Steven S. DeKnight (Angel, Buffy the Vampire Slayer). They will discuss the fresh narrative approach to the ancient legend and offer exclusive first look footage, which utilizes virtual environments to give the show a unique graphic novel look and style. Debuting exclusively on Starz in January 2010. Room 6BCF
12:45-2:15 DisDisney: Animation Panel— Walt Disney Pictures, Disneyâ€¢Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios present a director panel with previously unseen footage from its upcoming animated slate, including Toy Story & Toy Story 2 – Double Feature, Beauty And The Beast, Toy Story 3, Prep & Landing, The Princess and the Frog and Ponyo. Special guests include Lee Unkrich, Kirk Wise, Ron Clements, John Musker, and Hayao Miyazaki. John Lasseter hosts the panel, with Patton Oswalt moderating. Hall H
1:30-3:00 Legends of The Batman— Seventy years ago Bob Kane and Bill Finger introduced the second great superhero in comics: Batman. On the anniversary of this momentous occasion Mark Evanier talks to legendary Batman artists—and Comic-Con special guests—Sheldon “Shelly” Moldoff, Jerry Robinson, and Lew Sayre Schwartz about their time with the Caped Crusader. Room 8
1:45-2:45 Robert Rodriguez— Join famed director Robert Rodriguez (Spy Kids) for a first look at his upcoming family film Shorts, followed by Q&A. Room 6DE
2:00-3:00 Marvel: Cup o’ Joe— This is it, Mighty Marvel fans- the no-holds-barred, anything goes, full of surprises panel you wait for all year, and it’s here! Marvel’s EEK (editor-in-chief) Joe Quesada takes on all questions, shocks the audience with jaw-dropping announcements, and keeps you guessing with surprise guests. You never know who will show up, but you better be here, because this is the panel that everyone will be talking about! Room 6BCF
2:15-3:00 24— The Fox series 24 is coming off its most critically acclaimed season in years. Stars Kiefer Sutherland, Mary Lynn Rajskub and new cast members Anil Kapoor and Katee Sackhoff join showrunnner Howard Gordon and the producers of the Emmy-winning series for a special sneak peek at the heart-stopping premiere episode of Season 8 Ballroom 20
2:30-3:30 Focus Features: 9— Focus Features and Comic-Con present an exclusive look inside director Shane Acker’s animated fantasy epic 9, the feature-length expansion of his short film of the same name. Directors Tim Burton and Timur Bekmambetov are among the feature version’s producers. The action-packed adventure—opening nationwide 9/9/09—takes place after our world fell to pieces, when a group of “stitchpunk” creations must summon individual strengths well beyond their own proportions. While showcasing a stunning steampunk-styled visual brilliance, 9 dynamically explores the will to live, the power of community, and how one soul can change the world. Join Shane Acker, Tim Burton, Timur Bekmambetov, and actors Elijah Wood and Jennifer Connelly LIVE for this panel presentation! Hall H
3:00-4:00 DC Nation— Calling all Nation recruits! Bring your friends and hear top talent discuss where the DC Nation is heading from 2009 and beyond. senior VP/ executive editor Dan DiDio hosts this exciting discussion with Ian Sattler, James Robinson, Geoff Johns, Greg Rucka, and more! Join them for a VIP look into the most talked about stories and events of the summer! Room 6DE
3:00-3:45 Bones— Showrunner Hart Hanson and stars David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel are on hand for a discussion of what’s on deck for Booth and Brennan, hot on the heels of this year’s much talked-about season finale in which the pair finally wound up between the sheets. Ballroom 20
3:45-5:00 Sony Pictures Entertainment: Legion and District 9— Sony Pictures Entertainment and Screen Gems introduce two great new movie projects exclusively to Comic-Con attendees!
Legion—When the last angel falls, the fight for mankind begins. Having lost faith in the human race, a legion of angels descend to Earth to bring about the Apocalypse. Humanity’s only hope lies in a group of strangers trapped in a desert diner and the Archangel Michael himself (Paul Bettany). Appearing on stage: Paul Bettany (A Beautiful Mind, The DaVinci Code), Adrianne Palicki (Friday Night Lights, Supernatural), Tyrese Gibson (Transformers, Death Race), Doug Jones (Silver Surfer in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer and Abe Sapien in Hellboy), and director Scott Stewart (helming his first feature film after working on VFX for Sin City, Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire, and Iron Man, among many others). From Screen Gems.
District 9—Peter Jackson makes his eagerly and long-awaited first visit to Comic-Con to introduce you to the world of District 9, which focuses on a world in which extraterrestrials have become refugees in South Africa. Thirty years ago, aliens made first contact with Earth. Humans waited for the hostile attack or the giant advances in technology. Neither came. Instead, the aliens were refugees, the last survivors of their home world. The creatures were set up in a makeshift home in South Africa’s District 9 as the world’s nations argued over what to do with them—as well as their powerful technology and advanced weaponry that can only be activated by Alien DNA. Please join Peter Jackson as he gives fans a first look at scenes from District 9 and takes your questions along with director Neill Blomkamp and star Sharlto Copley. From Sony Pictures Entertainment
4:00-5:00 Kirkamania! The Robert Kirkman Panel— Join writer Robert Kirkman (Walking Dead, Invincible) for a lively discussion on his many projects and a look forward into the future with more than a few exclusive announcements! All this plus a surprise appearance by Todd McFarlane (Haunt), as super secret free comics will be given away during a very special Q&A session! Room 7AB
4:00-5:15 Dollhouse— Join Dollhouse creator Joss Whedon and star/producer Eliza Dushku for a no-holds-barred Q & A about what they have planned for season 2, after they unveil a special screening of the never-before-seen “Epitaph One” episode of the Fox hit, which releases on DVD just four days later. Ballroom 20
4:30-5:30 DC: Wednesday Comics— Wednesday Comics gives a fresh twist to a grand comics tradition by reinventing the classic newspaper comics section and filling it to the brim with today’s top talent and characters! Learn all you need to know about DC’s excitingly innovative weekly 12-issue series from the title’s mastermind, DCU editorial art director Mark Chiarello, and an all-star list of panelists! Believe us, you’ve never seen a panel or a project like this! Room 5AB
5:15-6:00 Joss Whedon— After the Dollhouse presentation, stick around for 45 minutes of information and Q&A with Joss Whedon about his upcoming Dark Horse Comics projects! Ballroom 20
5:30-6:30 Vertigo: View of the Future— Discover what’s going on at the imprint that birthed The Sandman, Preacher, Y: The Last Man, Fables and more. Wait ’til you hear about what new projects the Vertigo team is going to thrill you with next! Hosted by senior VP/executive editor, Vertigo Karen Berger, group editor Shelly Bond, and senior editor Will Dennis, with Jason Aaron (Scalped), Mike Allred, Mark Buckingham (Fables), Josh Dysart (Unknown Soldier), Peter Gross (Unwritten), Amy Hadley (Madame Xanadu), Jeff Lemire (The Nobody), Chris Roberson, Matt Sturges (House of Mystery), Matt Wagner (Madame Xanadu), Bill Willingham (Fables, House of Mystery), G. Willow Wilson (Air), Brian Wood (DMZ, Northlanders), and others! Room 5AB
5:45-7:15 DC Universe Animated Super Powers: Green Lantern: First Flight and Superman/Batman: Public Enemies— Get the inside scoop on the next two action-packed entries in the popular series of DC Universe animated original PG-13 films, Green Lantern: First Flight and Superman/Batman: Public Enemies. Hal Jordan’s first full-length adventure, Green Lantern: First Flight, brings together executive producer Bruce Timm (Superman Doomsday), casting/dialogue director Andrea Romano (DC Universe films), director Lauren Montgomery (Wonder Woman), writer Alan Burnett (The Batman), and voice talent Christopher Meloni (Law & Order: SVU) and Juliet Landau (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) to discuss and show film clips from the all-new film set for release on July 28. Then, Timm and Romano will be joined by supervising producer Michael Goguen (Justice League: The New Frontier), director Sam Liu (The Batman), and writer Stan Berkowitz (Justice League: The New Frontier), for the first-ever footage and public discussion of Superman/Batman: Public Enemies. Kevin Conroy, the undisputed benchmark voice of Batman, joins the panel for his first Comic-Con appearance in six years! Based on the popular Jeff Loeb/Ed McGuinness comic series/graphic novel, Superman/Batman: Public Enemies finds U.S. President Lex Luthor using the oncoming trajectory of a kryptonite asteroid to frame Superman and declare a $1 billion bounty on the heads of the Man of Steel and his “partner in crime,” Batman. Superheroes and supervillains alike launch a relentless pursuit of Superman and Batman, who must unite—and recruit super help—to stave off the action-packed onslaught, stop the asteroid, and uncover Luthor’s devious plot to take command of far more than North America. Superman/Batman: Public Enemies will be distributed by Warner Home Video in fall 2009. The movie reunites the lead voices from the landmark Superman: The Animated Series and Batman: The Animated Series—Conroy, Tim Daly (Private Practice) and Clancy Brown (The Shawshank Redemption) reprise their roles as Batman, Superman and Lex Luthor, respectively. Other members of the cast are expected to join the panel, as well. DC Comics senior VP of creative affairs Gregory Noveck moderates. Room 6BCF
6:15-7:15 TV Guide Magazine: Sci Fi Hot List— TV Guide magazine takes an in-depth look at some of the most buzzed-about new and returning TV series, featuring the hottest talent from in front of the camera and behind the scenes. TV Guide executive editor Craig Tomashoff moderates this panel that offers the inside scoop, along with special surprises. Scheduled participants include Johnny Galecki (The Big Bang Theory), Zachary Levi (Chuck), Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory), Scott Peters (executive producer, V), Rebecca Romijn (Eastwick), Kevin Williamson (executive producer, The Vampire Diaries), Scott Wolf (V), John Cho (Flash Forward), Marc Guggenheim (producer, Flash Forward), Allison DuBois (the real person behind Medium), and others. Ballroom 20
6:30-7:30 FEAR Clinic (A FEARnet Original Production)— Don’t miss this panel discussion with actor Robert Englund (A Nightmare on Elm Street), director Robert Hall (Laid to Rest), and guest moderator Clive Barker. In this series, Dr. Andover (Englund) seeks to cure his patients’ deepest fears with a device that allows them to confront their fear head-on. His extreme method is so effective, it has a 100 percent success rate, at least for all those who live through it. Join the panelists and featured cast and crew live on stage for a sneak peek and Q&A about the highly anticipated series. Room 5AB
6:30-7:30 Horror Comics into Film— Aintitcool.com’s Mark L. Miller discusses all things horror with the creators behind some of the scariest comics/films: Kevin Grevioux (co-writer/actor of Underworld), Marv Wolfman (creator of Blade), Tim Seely (creator of Hack/Slash), Whitley Strieber (creator of The Nye Incidents), Todd Lincoln (director/producer of The Nye Incidents), Jeff Katz (creator of Freddy vs. Jason vs. Ash), Steven C.Miller (writer/director of Automaton Transfusion), Adam Wingard (Pop Skull), and Ryan Schifrin (creator of Spooks). Room 30AB
6:30-7:30 Entertainment Weekly: The Visionaries— A discussion with iconic filmmakers James Cameron (Avatar) and Peter Jackson (District 9) on the Future of Film—EW moderates an in-depth conversation with these two cinematic giants about the art of film narrative and how technology and global culture will alter the art of on-screen storytelling in the next 20 years. Hall H
7:30-8:45 Stan Helsing— Clips, interviews and Q&A with filmmaker Bo Zenga (Scary Movie) and stars Leslie Nielsen (Naked Gun), Kenan Thompson (Saturday Night Live), Diora Baird (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning), Steve Howey (Reba), and Desi Lydic (The Real Wedding Crashers). Anchor Bay’s Stan Helsing horror spoof features parodies of the six greatest movie monsters of all time: Freddy/Nightmare on Elm Street, Jason/Friday the 13th, Leatherface/The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Pinhead/Hellraiser, Chucky/Childs Play, and Michael Myers/Halloween. Room 6BCF
8:30-11:00 Darksiders Presents: The Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards— The 21st annual Eisner Awards, the “Oscars” of the comics industry, will be given out at a gala ceremony at a brand-new location: the Indigo Ballroom at the Hilton Bayfront. This year’s special them is “Comics and All That Jazz.” Presenters include writer/actors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant (Reno 911, Balls of Fury), acclaimed comics creators Jeff Smith and Terry Moore, actor/comedian Patton Oswalt, actor/musician/writer Bill Mumy, actress/musician Jane Wiedlin, and G4’s Blair Butler, with many more to be announced. Other prestigious awards to be given out include the Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award, the Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award, and the Bill Finger Award for Excellence in Comic Book Writing. The master of ceremonies is Bongo Comics’ Bill Morrison. Admission to the Eisners is free to all Comic-Con attendees—just be sure to bring your badge. Doors open for pro and VIP seating at 7:30 and for attendees at 8:15. Indigo Ballroom / Hilton Bayfront
9:30-10:30 The Blood Factory— This screening and Q&A with The Blood Factory creators features Danny DeVito (actor/director/producer), Tracey Walter (Batman, City Slickers), John Albo (screenwriter), Nick Bonamy (production designer), and Tkay Garcia (website creative director). Learn how they bring tales of horror and menace to life. All Comic-Con attendees are invited to participate. This will be a haunting experience—chilling—not easily forgotten. Room 7AB
Animation greats Hayao Miyazaki and John Lasseter and directors Robert Zemeckis and Tim Burton will take part in their first ever Comic-Con at the San Diego Convention Center July 23-24. The filmmakers will be on hand to help Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures showcase a wide-ranging roster of upcoming films, including 3D juggernauts ALICE IN WONDERLAND, TRON and DISNEY’S A CHRISTMAS CAROL, and animated gems THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, PONYO and the TOY STORY trilogy.
Zemeckis, Burton, Miyazaki and Lasseter will take part in industry panels.
ABOUT THE MOVIES
From the Academy Award®-winning director and world-renowned Japanese animation legend Hayao Miyazaki comes PONYO, a story inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale “The Little Mermaid.” Already a box-office success in Japan, the story of a young and overeager goldfish named Ponyo (voiced by NOAH CYRUS) and her quest to become human features an outstanding roster of voice talent, including CATE BLANCHETT, MATT DAMON, TINA FEY, FRANKIE JONAS, CLORIS LEACHMAN, LIAM NEESON, LILY TOMLIN and BETTY WHITE. PONYO opens in U.S. theaters on Aug. 14, 2009.
TOY STORY & TOY STORY 2 – DOUBLE FEATURE (In Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢)
Disneyâ—Pixar’s TOY STORY and TOY STORY 2 return to the big screen in an exciting double feature Oct. 2, 2009—this time in Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢.
They’re toys, they talk—at least when people aren’t around—and they’re backâ€¦ celebrating the return of the “Toy Story” franchise—this time in Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢! TOY STORY, the film that started it all, takes moviegoers back to that fantastic fun-filled journey, viewed mostly through the eyes of two rival toys— Woody (voice of TOM HANKS), the lanky, likable cowboy, and Buzz Lightyear (voice of TIM ALLEN), the fearless space ranger. The comically-mismatched duo eventually learn to put aside their differences when circumstances separate them from their owner Andy and they find themselves on a hilarious adventure-filled mission where the only way they can survive is to form an uneasy alliance.
TOY STORY 2
Disneyâ€¢Pixar’s TOY STORY 2 picks up as Andy heads off to Cowboy Camp, leaving his toys to their own devices. Things shift into high gear when an obsessive toy collector named Al McWhiggin (voice of WAYNE KNIGHT), owner of Al’s Toy Barn, kidnaps Woody (voice of TOM HANKS). At Al’s apartment, Woody discovers that he is a highly valued collectible from a 1950s TV show called “Woody’s Roundup,” and he meets the other prized toys from that show – Jessie the cowgirl (voice of JOAN CUSACK), Bullseye the horse and Stinky Pete the Prospector (voice of KELSEY GRAMMER). Back at the scene of the crime, Buzz Lightyear (voice of TIM ALLEN) and the gang from Andy’s room – Mr. Potato Head (voice of DON RICKLES), Slinky Dog (voice of JIM VARNEY), Rex (voice of WALLACE SHAWN) and Hamm (voice of JOHN RATZENBERGER) – spring into action to rescue their pal from winding up as a museum piece. The toys get into one predicament after another in their daring race to get Woody home before Andy returns.
DISNEY’S A CHRISTMAS CAROL (In Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢ and IMAX® 3D)
DISNEY’S A CHRISTMAS CAROL, a multi-sensory thrill ride re-envisioned by Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Robert Zemeckis, captures the fantastical essence of the classic Dickens tale in a groundbreaking 3D motion picture event. Ebenezer Scrooge (JIM CARREY) begins the Christmas holiday with his usual miserly contempt, barking at his faithful clerk (GARY OLDMAN) and his cheery nephew (COLIN FIRTH). But when the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come take him on an eye-opening journey revealing truths Old Scrooge is reluctant to face, he must open his heart to undo years of ill will before it’s too late. Opens in theaters nationwide on Nov. 6, 2009.
THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG
Walt Disney Animation Studios presents the musical THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG, an animated comedy set in the great city of New Orleans. From the creators of “The Little Mermaid” and “Aladdin” comes a modern twist on a classic tale, featuring a beautiful girl named Tiana (ANIKA NONI ROSE), a frog prince who desperately wants to be human again, and a fateful kiss that leads them both on a hilarious adventure through the mystical bayous of Louisiana. THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG marks the return to hand-drawn animation from the revered team of John Musker and Ron Clements, with music by Oscar®-winning composer Randy Newman. Opens on November 25, 2009 in NY and LA, and on December 11, 2009 nationwide.
PREP & LANDING
PREP & LANDING is ABC’s first television special produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios. The half-hour holiday special reveals the never-before-told tale of an elite unit of Elves known as Prep & Landing. Every Christmas Eve, this high-tech organization ensures that homes around the world are properly prepared for a visit from the Big Guy (aka Santa Claus). After working tirelessly on Prep & Landing for 227 years, an elf named Wayne (voice of Dave Foley) is upset when he doesn’t receive an expected promotion to be the Director of Naughty List Intelligence. Instead, Magee (voice of Sarah Chalke), the North Pole Christmas Eve Command Center Coordinator (NPCECCC for short), partners Wayne with Lanny (voice of Derek Richardson), an idealistic rookie who has an undying enthusiasm for Christmas. During their Christmas Eve mission, Wayne and Lanny encounter unexpected challenges that push them to their limits.
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (In Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢)
Walt Disney Pictures’ magical animated classic BEAUTY AND THE BEAST returns to the big screen in Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢, introducing a whole new generation to the Disney classic with stunning new 3D imagery. Opening Feb. 12, 2010, the film captures the fantastic journey of Belle (voice of PAIGE O’HARA), a bright and beautiful young woman who’s taken prisoner by a hideous beast (voice of ROBBY BENSON) in his castle. Despite her precarious situation, Belle befriends the castle’s enchanted staff—a teapot, a candelabra and a mantel clock, among others—and ultimately learns to see beneath the Beast’s exterior to discover the heart and soul of a prince. Featuring unforgettable music by Howard Ashman and Alan Menken, and an enormously talented vocal ensemble, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST was the first—and only—animated feature to receive a Best Picture nomination from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
ALICE IN WONDERLAND (In Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢)
From Walt Disney Pictures and visionary director Tim Burton comes an epic 3D fantasy adventure ALICE IN WONDERLAND, a magical and imaginative twist on some of the most beloved stories of all time. JOHNNY DEPP stars as the Mad Hatter and MIA WASIKOWSKA as 19-year-old Alice, who returns to the whimsical world she first encountered as a young girl, reuniting with her childhood friends: the White Rabbit, Tweedledee and Tweedledum, the Dormouse, the Caterpillar, the Cheshire Cat, and of course, the Mad Hatter. Alice embarks on a fantastical journey to find her true destiny and end the Red Queen’s reign of terror. The all-star cast also includes ANNE HATHAWAY, HELENA BONHAM CARTER and CRISPIN GLOVER; Linda Woolverton wrote the screenplay. Capturing the wonder of Lewis Carroll’s beloved “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” (1865) and “Through the Looking-Glass” (1871) with stunning, avant-garde visuals and the most charismatic characters in literary history, ALICE IN WONDERLAND comes to the big screen in Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢ on March 5, 2010.
TOY STORY 3 (In Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢)
The creators of the beloved “Toy Story” films re-open the toy box and bring moviegoers back to the delightful world of Woody, Buzz and our favorite gang of toy characters in TOY STORY 3. Lee Unkrich (co-director of “Toy Story 2″ and “Finding Nemo”) directs this highly anticipated film, and Michael Arndt, the Academy Award®-winning screenwriter of “Little Miss Sunshine,” brings his unique talents and comedic sensibilities to the proceedings. TOY STORY 3 comes to theaters nationwide in Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢ on June 18, 2010.
TRON (title not final) (In Disney Digital 3Dâ„¢)
TRON is a 3D high-tech adventure set in a digital world that’s unlike anything ever captured on the big screen. Sam Flynn (GARRETT HEDLUND), the tech-savvy 27-year-old son of Kevin Flynn (JEFF BRIDGES), looks into his father’s disappearance and finds himself pulled into the same world of fierce programs and gladiatorial games where his father has been living for 25 years. Along with Kevin’s loyal confidant (OLIVIA WILDE), father and son embark on a life-and-death journey across a visually-stunning cyber universe that has become far more advanced and exceedingly dangerous.
The loose adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid” — about an enchanting female goldfish who wants to become a human — has been receiving a lot of attention. For the first time in his career, Miyazaki will be appearing at Comic-Con in San Diego in July showing clips from “Ponyo,” which has made $182.1 million internationally.
Marc Davis Celebration of Animation
Featuring Hayao Miyazaki, in person
Hosted by John Lasseter (Toy Story)
An Animated Feature Oscar® winner for Spirited Away in 2002 and a nominee for Howl’s Moving Castle in 2005, Hayao Miyazaki is a unique and singular force in the world of animated films. An auteur in the most collaborative of mediums, he writes, directs and storyboards his own feature-length animated films, overseeing even the minutest details throughout production, often even redrawing individual production cels. His films, though varied in setting and tone, all balance harsh and sometimes violent realities with a sense of childlike wonder and enchantment, always with a very quiet and subtle human touch.
Though not as well known in the United States, his work creates box office records in Japan and around the world, and he is among the first cited when animators the world over are asked about their sources of inspiration. Oscar winner and Short Films and Feature Animation Branch governor John Lasseter will host 2009’s second edition of the Marc Davis Celebration of Animation, guiding an evening featuring clip highlights from Miyazaki’s films and a conversation with the master himself.
Miyazaki’s other features include Castle in the Sky, My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Porco Rosso and Princess Mononoke, among others.
This event is SOLD OUT. A standby line will form on the day of the event, and standby numbers will be assigned at approximately 5:30 p.m. Any available tickets will be distributed shortly before the program begins. Ticketholders should plan to arrive at least 15 minutes before the start of the event to ensure a seat in the theater.
Tuesday, July 28, at 7:30 p.m.
Doors open at 6:30 p.m.
Samuel Goldwyn Theater
8949 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA 90211
Directions, Parking & Theater Policies
All seating is unreserved.
/FILM makes a compelling case for it. The Japanese filmmaker, known for Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke, is currently scheduled to make an appearance in Berkeley on July 25th so what’s to say he won’t make a trip to San Diego as well? Follow the link.
Hayao Miyazaki in Berkeley
The Center for Japanese Studies at the University of California, Berkeley is proud to award internationally acclaimed filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki with the 2009 Berkeley Japan Prize, which honors individuals from all disciplines and professions who have, over a lifetime influenced the world’s understanding of Japan. In conjunction with his in-person acceptance of the award, Hayao Miyazaki will be honored with a series of events held on the UC Berkeley campus, celebrating his timeless body of film work.
Hayao Miyazaki is the second recipient of the recently inaugurated Berkeley Japan Prize; the 2008 winner was novelist Haruki Murakami.
For nearly fifty years, Hayao Miyazaki has been enchanting the world with fantastic, meticulously composed and emotionally soaring films, making him one of the world’s most respected and revered animators and directors. Among the dozens of films he has written, directed and animated, his best-known and beloved include: My Neighbor Totoro (1988); Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989); Princess Mononoke (1997); Spirited Away (2001); and Howl’s Moving Castle (2004). What makes Miyazaki’s work especially unique is, in a genre overpopulated with technology and robots, his films have a deeply nostalgic, ecological soul that conveys the critical message of caring for our planet and a global need for spiritual nourishment.
Miyazaki founded his now legendary animation studio, Studio Ghibli, in 1985, shortly after the release of his second major film, NausicaÃ¤ of the Valley of the Wind. After Studio Ghibli became a household name in Japan, it sought to bring their films overseas and built a partnership with the Walt Disney Company. In 2002, Miyazaki’s masterpiece Spirited Away won the Oscar for best animated feature film — the first Japanese animated film ever to win the award. Audience reaction to Spirited Away was unprecedented. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times heralded Spirited Away as: “..enchanting and delightful in its own way, and has a good heart. It is the best animated film of recent years… the Japanese master who is a god to the Disney animators.”
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Hayao Miyazaki in Conversation
6:00 PM to 7:45 PM
For this extremely rare, U.S. appearance, Hayao Miyazaki will be interviewed on stage, followed by a question and answer period with the audience. Join us for an opportunity to engage Miyazaki in a conversation about more than just anime — the social issues and ideas that his films champion, including the future of Japan and the role of the artist in a rapidly evolving world.
For tickets to this limited-seating engagement, please visit here…