ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY RETURNS TO COMIC-CON 2009 WITH A STAR-STUDDED SERIES OF PANELS, A PHOTO STUDIO, AND AN EXCLUSIVE CELEBRATION WITH SYFY
James Cameron, Peter Jackson, Sigourney Weaver, Elizabeth Mitchell, and Zoe Saldana To Participate in Entertainment Weekly Panel Series
Entertainment Weekly Publishes 2nd Annual Comic-Con Preview Package, Starring Iron Man 2 on the Cover, and with Exclusive First Looks at the Most Highly Anticipated Movies and TV Shows
NEW YORK (July 16, 2009) – Entertainment Weekly is preparing to invade Comic-Con for the third consecutive year with a fully loaded arsenal: three high-caliber panels, a photo and digital studio, and an exclusive event co-hosted by Syfy. In addition, Entertainment Weekly is publishing its second annual Comic-Con preview package jam-packed with exclusive first looks at some of the most highly anticipated TV shows and movies including Iron Man 2, which will be featured on the cover of this special issue. In the latest installment of Iron Man (the franchise that blasted Robert Downey Jr. back to stardom), the superhero returns to the big screen to battle new villain Mickey Rourke and to size up Scarlett Johansson, and hopes to prove the first time wasn’t a fluke. Link to full story on EW.com: http://popwatch.ew.com/popwatch/2009/07/this-weeks-cover-iron-man-2.html
Entertainment Weekly’s three Comic-Con panels will bring together some of the best and brightest creators in television and movies to discuss the work that’s being done in their respective fields. Footage from each of these panels will be available by July 26 on EW.com. The first of these panels will be “Wonder Women: Female Power Icons in Pop Culture,” moderated by Entertainment Weekly editor-at-large Ben Svetkey. It will feature a discussion with Sigourney Weaver (Avatar), Elizabeth Mitchell (Lost, V), and Zoe Saldana (Avatar, Star Trek) about the actresses who have redefined the rules, and the female characters who have shattered the glass ceiling for all women. This panel will take place at 1:15 p.m. on Thursday, July 23.
Next up, Entertainment Weekly executive editor Jeff Giles will moderate an in-depth discussion with iconic filmmakers James Cameron (Avatar) and Peter Jackson (producer of District 9) on the future of film, the art of film narrative and how technology and global culture will alter the art of on-screen storytelling in the next 20 years. This panel will be at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, July 24.
To close out the series, Entertainment Weekly senior writers, hosts of EW.com’s Totally Lost, and resident Lost experts Jeffrey “Doc” Jensen and Dan Snierson will prep Lost fans for the final season of the show with their sharp insights and bold theories. There may be a few surprises as well. This panel will take place at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 25.
For the third year in a row, Entertainment Weekly and Syfy will partner to celebrate all things pop culture at Comic-Con 2009 with an exclusive event. Hollywood and the genre’s most elite will enjoy music, food, and cocktails while entertainment luminaries enjoy views of downtown San Diego. This event is invitation-only.
In addition to these events, Entertainment Weekly’s second annual Comic-Con issue will be packed full of first looks at highly anticipated movies such as Sherlock Holmes, District 9, 2012 and 9, as well as exclusives from upcoming TV shows including Vampire Diaries, Flashforward, V and Stargate Universe. Plus: An exclusive first look at the new Twilight graphic novel. Five thousand complimentary copies of this special issue will be handed out to Comic-Con visitors and fans who stop by the Marvel Studios booth celebrating Iron Man 2. Guests at the Hard Rock Hotel San Diego and the Hotel Solamar will also receive copies of EW’s special Comic-Con 2009 issue.
EW.com continues to be THE destination for Comic-Con coverage in 2009 with breaking news and regular updates from the convention floor via our award-winning PopWatch blog (EW.com/PopWatch) and Twitter stream (@EWPopWatch). Plus, we’ve got exclusive video interviews, first looks, and image galleries from the EW Photo Studio at the Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego. This year, the site will also take viewers inside Entertainment Weekly’s own high-profile conversations with exclusive video of Peter Jackson, James Cameron, Sigourney Weaver, Elizabeth Mitchell (“Lost,” “V”), and more. Finally, as ABC’s “Lost” celebrates its last year at Comic-Con, fan favorite Jeff “Doc” Jensen (@EWDocJensen on Twitter) presents exclusive video interviews with the cast and producers, as well as footage from his highly-anticipated “Totally Lost” panel.
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
The wait is over! Comic-Con International has announced the programming for Preview Night, Wednesday, July 22nd, and Thursday, July 23rd.
Where else can you see Dave Gibbons, Robert Zemeckis, Tim Burton, Stan Lee, James Cameron, Sigourney Weaver, Terry Gilliam, and Nicholas Cage in the same day?
Everyone will be picking it apart and naming their favorites in the days to come, but here are a few things that caught my eye already:
10:15-11:15 Summit Entertainment: Astro Boy— A superhero origin story set in a futuristic world, Astro Boy is an all-new CG-animated feature film based on the classic manga about a young robot with incredible powers and his adventure-filled journey in search of his identity and destiny. Director David Bowers, producer Maryanne Grager, and stars Freddie Highmore (Astro) and Kristen Bell (Cora) debut footage exclusive to Comic-Con 2009 and answer your questions about bringing this beloved hero to the big screen. Room 6BCF
10:30-11:30 Motion Comics: Graphic Novels in The Digital Age— Warner Premiere is one of the pioneers in the production of Motion Comics, which include Watchmen, Peanuts, Batman: Black and White, and many others. Motion Comics are short-form videos that use subtle movements, voice-overs, sweeping music scores, and stunning comic book artwork to bring an engaging visual experience to life. Moderated by Gregory Noveck (DC Comics), with panelists Paul Levitz, (DC Comics, Batman: Black and White), Dave Gibbons (Watchmen, Batman: Black and White), Paul Dini (Batman: Black and White, Mad Love), Lydia Antonini (Warner Premiere), Dylan Coburn (Karactaz, Superman: Red Son), and Stephen Fedasz (Perpetual Notions), who discuss graphic novel storytelling and production in the digital age. Attendees will also see the debut of two DC Motion Comic series during this panel. Room 6DE
11:00-12:30 Disney: 3D Panel— Walt Disney Pictures presents key filmmakers, select cast members and previously unseen footage from its upcoming slate, including Disney’s A Christmas Carol, Alice In Wonderland and Tron. Special guests include Robert Zemeckis, Tim Burton, Sean Bailey, Steve Lisberger, and moderator Patton Oswalt. Hall H
11:15-12:15 The Middleman Cast Reunion and Lost Episode Table Read— Creator Javier Grillo-Marxuach (Lost) and the complete cast—including Matt Keeslar, Natalie Morales, Brit Morgan, Mary Pat Gleason, Jake Smollett, Mark Sheppard, Brendan Hines, Sarah Watson, Jordan Rosenberg, Margaret Dunlap, and Andy Reaser—reunite to celebrate the DVD release of The Middleman: The Complete Series from Shout! Factory, with an exclusive table read of the lost 13th episode, The Doomsday Armageddon Apocalypse, which was never produced for television but is now available as a graphic novel from Viper Comics. Room 6A
11:45-12:45 DC: Superman: Two Worlds— Torn between New Krypton and Earth, the Man of Steel has only just begun his latest adventure. You’ve seen the stories: a new planet of Kryptonians; scores of super-powered beings. The people behind Superman’s future are here to face the most trying times in his life. Meet the talented folks behind Superman as they give you a glimpse of what is in store for our favorite Super-family. Featuring Superman group editor Matt Idelson, writers Geoff Johns (Adventure Comics, Superman: Secret Origins), Greg Rucka (Action Comics), James Robinson (Superman), Sterling Gates (Supergirl), Renato Guedes (Superman), and more! Room 6DE
12:45-1:45 Disney: Stan Lee’s Time Jumper— Don’t miss Stan Lee and Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment as they present a special sneak peek of their new digital motion comic series Time Jumper. Comic book legend Stan Lee is joined by Natasha Henstridge (one of the character voices in Time Jumper), Omar Ponce (writer), and Anthony Diecidue (artist) for a Q&A session. Room 6BCF
12:45-2:00 20th Century Fox and James Cameron present Avatar— In this first public screening of footage in 3D from his much-anticipated action/adventure/fantasy, James Cameron, producer Jon Landau, and cast members take you to a spectacular new world beyond imagination. Conceived 14 years ago and over four years in the making, Avatar breaks new ground in delivering a fully immersive, emotional story and reinvents the movie-going experience. Hall H
2:00-3:00 Sony Pictures Animation: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs— In 2009, Columbia Pictures’ and Sony Pictures Animation’s Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs will be the most delicious event since macaroni met cheese. Inspired by the classic children’s book, the film focuses on a town where food begins to fall from the sky like rain. Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live, Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian) is the voice of Flint Lockwood, a young inventor who dreams of creating something that will improve everyone’s life. Anna Faris (The House Bunny) takes on the role of Sam Sparks, a weathergirl covering the phenomenon who hides her intelligence behind a perky exterior. James Caan plays Tim Lockwood, Flint’s technophobic father. SNL‘s Andy Samberg plays Brent, the town bully who has plagued Flint since childhood. Bruce Campbell plays Mayor Shelbourne, who figures out that Flint’s invention can put the town, and more importantly himself, on the map, and Mr. T plays the by-the-rules town cop, Earl Devereaux. Bobb’e J. Thompson (Role Models) is Carl Devereaux, Earl’s son. Appearing in person: Anna Faris, Bill Hader, Andy Samberg, Bobb’e J. Thompson, and directors Chris Miller and Phil Lord. Room 6BCF
2:15-3:15 Summit Entertainment— Summit Entertainment presents a sneak peek of exclusive footage of some of its upcoming major film releases!
Astro boy—A classic superhero origin story set in a futuristic world, Astro Boy is an all-new CG-animated feature film about a young robot with incredible powers and his adventure-filled journey in search of his identity and destiny. Join Freddie Highmore and Kristen Bell as they premiere the final trailer for Astro Boy before it’s in theaters.
Sorority Row—When five sorority girls inadvertently cause the murder of one of their sisters in a prank gone wrong, they agree to keep the matter to themselves and never speak of it again, so they can get on with their lives. This proves easier said than done, when after graduation a mysterious killer goes after the five of them and anyone who knows their secret. Join the cast of Sorority Row as they debut footage from the film exclusive to Comic-Con 2009.
The Twilight Saga: New Moon—Summit Entertainment is proud to present the panel for The Twilight Saga: New Moon, the highly anticipated sequel to last year’s box office smash Twilight. Surprise members of the cast will answer your questions about the second film in the series and debut never-before-seen footage from the new film.
3:00-4:00 Robot Chicken with Titan Maximum— Seth Green (co-creator, Robot Chicken and Titan Maximum), Matthew Senreich (co-creator, Robot Chicken and Titan Maximum), Tom Root (head writer, Robot Chicken/co-creator, Titan Maximum) and Doug Goldstein (head writer, Robot Chicken) with Chris McKay, Breckin Meyer, Kevin Shinick, Mike Fasolo, and Dan Milano discuss the popular Adult Swim series Robot Chicken. They will also discuss the upcoming new stop-motion animated series Titan Maximum, slated to premiere on Adult Swim this fall. Join this meet-up of show creators, writers and voice actors for a Q&A, moderated by Keith Crofford, vice president of Adult Swim production. Room 6A
3:00-4:00 Masters of the Web— For the third year in a row the most popular genre and movie websites are coming together to discuss how new media have affected moviemaking, what it takes to run a popular site, and much more in a panel discussion and Q&A session. Participants include Robert Sanchez (IESB.net), Ryan Rotten (Shocktilyoudrop.com), Mike Sampson (Joblo.com), Jeremy Smith (Aintitcoolnews.com), Brad Miska (Bloody-Disgusting.com), Drew McWeeny (Hitfix.com), Devin Faraci (CHUD.com), Paul Christensen (Movieweb.com), Wilson Morales (Blackfilm.com/AOL Black Voices), Vic Holtreman (Screenrant.com), and George Roush (Latinoreview.com). Director Kevin Munroe (TMNT, Dead of Night) moderates, with Brandon Routh and Sam Huntington on hand to preview an exclusive sneak peek of their new film Dead of Night, based on the Dylan Dog comic books. Room 32AB
3:30-5:00 Golden and Silver Age of Comics— A Comic-Con tradition: the yearly gathering and discussion of the clan of some of the finest comic book creators ever to put pen or typewriter to paper! This year’s panel—moderated by Mark Evanier—includes Comic-Con special guests Murphy Anderson (Hawkman), Gene Colan (Tomb of Dracula), Ramona Fradon (Aquaman), Russ Heath (The Haunted Tank), Jack Katz (The First Kingdom), Jerry Robinson (Batman), and Leonard Starr (Mary Perkins On Stage). Both Katz and Starr, known best for their underground comix and comic strip work, respectively, also worked in comics in the Golden and Silver Ages. The stories these people can tell are the stuff of legend…be a part of the yearly magic of this panel. Room 8
3:45-4:45 Entertainment Weekly: Wonder Women: Female Power Icons in Pop Culture— EW will moderate a conversation with Sigourney Weaver (Avatar), Elizabeth Mitchell (Lost), Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars), and other stars about the actresses who have redefined the rules and the female characters that have shattered the glass ceiling for all women. Basically: a discussion with women who kick ass. Ballroom 20
4:45-5:15 Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus— Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of both Comic-Con and Monty Python, we welcome the sole American Python, the great animator and director Terry Gilliam (Time Bandits, Brazil, 12 Monkeys) to introduce you to his new film starring Christopher Plummer, Johnny Depp, Heath Ledger, Colin Farrell, Jude Law, Verne Troyer, Tom Waits, and Lily Cole. Dr. Parnassus is a fabulous anachronism, touring the streets of modern-day London in a horse-drawn carnival wagon accompanied by his beautiful daughter, devoted dwarf, and neophyte barker. On stage Parnassus plays a holy man whose Imaginarium can realize the innermost fantasies of all who dare to enter. Backstage, he is a drunkard, a gambler who centuries ago lost a wager with the Devil and must now pony up with his daughter once she turns sixteen. Tomorrow. Yet, there may still be hope for the Doctor and Valentina in the person of Tony, a well-dressed amnesic they rescue from a perilous fate and invite into their world of unrelenting magic and possibility. Hall H
5:00-6:00 Showtime: Dexter— Calling all Dexter fans! If you’re a Dexter fanatic and can’t wait for the new season, you don’t want to miss this killer panel! Moderator Ralph Garman (KROQ Entertainment Reporter) presides over a revealing interview and Q&A session with the stars and executive producers of Dexter. Plus, get an exclusive first look at clips from the new season! Featured panelists include series star/executive producer Michael C. Hall (Dexter), Julie Benz (Rita), Jennifer Carpenter (Deb), and executive producers John Goldwyn, Sara Colleton, Clyde Phillips, and Melissa Rosenberg. The new season premieres September 27 at 9:00 PM EST/PST only on Showtime! Ballroom 20
5:45-6:45 Kick-Ass— World premiere footage from Kick-Ass, based on Mark Millar’s bestselling comic, is presented by director Matthew Vaughn (Stardust, Layercake). Joining him on the panel are Nicolas Cage, Christopher Mintz-Plasse (Superbad), and comic co-creator John Romita Jr., among others, including a surprise guest. You don’t want to miss the chance to be the first to experience this gritty, brash, and funny actioner. Hall H
9:30-12:00 Halloween Comes Early: Trick ‘r Treat Screening— Be among the first to see writer/director Michael Dougherty’s (Superman Returns, X2) creepy, darkly comic celebration of the scariest night of the year. Trick ‘r Treat takes the Creepshow/Tales from the Crypt approach to nefarious new depths with four interwoven tales set on Halloween night: a high school principal who moonlights as a vicious serial killer; a young virgin whose quest for that special someone takes a gruesome turn; a group of teens who carry out a cruel prank with disastrous consequences; and a cantankerous old man who battles a mischievous trick-or-treating demon. Prior to the screening, Ain’t It Cool News mogul Harry Knowles will moderate a panel featuring Michael Dougherty and members of the cast, including Anna Paquin (True Blood, X-Men), Tahmoh Penikett (Battlestar Galactica, Dollhouse), and Brian Cox (The Bourne Identity, X2). A collection of creepy stories that mixes fun with fear, candy with poison, and laughter with screams, the critically acclaimed Trick ‘r Treat will be released on Blu-ray Hi-Def and DVD and On Demand by Warner Home Video in October. Ballroom 20
Dork Shelf reports interesting information from a reliable source regarding the San Diego Comic Con and James Cameron‘s new film Avatar:
Apparently the huge 65,000 square foot H hall at the San Diego Convention Center is being converted into a massive 3D theatre for the event. This means that not only will Cameron be showing off Avatar at Comic Con, but that it will also be presented in full 3D as the director intended it to be seen. The hour long panel on July 23rd will feature James Cameron and two of the stars of Avatar, Zoe Saldana and Sigourney Weaver.
Later that day the same hall will play host to the Future of Filmmaking panel with Cameron and Peter Jackson. We can probably expect some more footage of Avatar and possibly our first look at Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson’s Adventures of Tintin movie. Spielberg, Cameron and Jackson have been the biggest proponents of this new 3D tech; Comic Con will be the first real public demonstration of what they’ve been up to with the technology. Every person that has seen footage from Avatar says that it really must be seen to be believed — I guess we’ll find out in a few weeks. Will it live up to the hype?