The Theme Park Improv Show’s improvisers take a single suggestion of a theme from the audience, and wing an entire set of fast-paced long-form scenes and characters, based on stories from a special guest monologist. After six sold-out years, they return to SF Sketchfest on Saturday, January 16, 2016 at 10:00pm with a stellar lineup: Ian Brennan (co-creator of “Glee”), Michael Hitchcock (“Best in Show”), John Michael Higgins (“A Mighty Wind”), Jessica Makinson (“Halfway Home”), Oscar Nunez (“The Office”) Cole Stratton (“Pop My Culture podcast) and Janet Varney (“Burning Love”). With special guest monologist James Roday from “Psych!” $25 All Ages tickets available now…
Presented by SF Sketchfest.
Brava Theater Center
2781 24th Street, San Francisco, CA 94110
Remember what it was like to be an awkward teenager? And remember how some things haven’t really changed that much for you since then? Join proud dork Janet Varney on Saturday, January 16, 2015 at noon as she explores the highs and lows of the bygone years with very special guests Charles W. “Chuck” Bryant and Josh Clark of the wildly popular podcast Stuff You Should Know as they talk their way through the terrible teens into adult-lescence. $20 All Ages
Presented as part of SF Sketchfest.
215 Jackson Street San Francisco, CA 94111
Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, creators of Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra, return to Barnes & Noble at The Grove on Tuesday, September 29 at 7:00 PM to discuss and sign THE LEGEND OF KORRA : THE ART OF THE ANIMATED SERIES – BOOK FOUR: BALANCE. Fans of this beloved series will adore this behind the scenes look at this phenomenal art! For event particulars, please call the store at 323.525.0270. (This event is wristbanded.)
**JUST ADDED** Janet Varney, the voice of Korra, will be joining us for this event!
Barnes & Noble – The Grove
189 The Grove Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90036
HavenCon is thrilled to welcome actors Janet Varney and PJ Byrne! They will be with us both Saturday April 4th and Sunday April 5, 2015 to speak with fans as well as providing autographs. *please note Dante Basco had to cancel his appearance due to his filming schedule*
Janet Varney is a comedian, actor, writer and producer. In the animation world, she is lucky enough to be the voice of Korra on Nickelodeon’s hit series The Legend of Korra. She also spent seven wonderful years hosting TBS’s “Dinner and a Movie,” recurred on HBO’s Entourage, was a series regular on the beloved E! and Yahoo series Burning Love seasons 1 and 3, and has made guest appearances in hit shows including How I Met Your Mother, Key and Peele, Psych, Bones, on the panel of Chelsea Lately, as a regular co-host on HuffPost Live, and has appeared in films such as Still Waiting, Drillbit Taylor, and Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer. Janet is the host of the popular Nerdist podcast The JV Club and the co-founder, creative director and producer of SF Sketchfest, the San Francisco Comedy Festival, now in its 14th year.
P.J. Byrne, known as Bolin from Legend of Korra! That’s right, we are reuniting members of #TeamAvatar. Both P.J. and Janet will be with us both days to talk all things Korra and more! P.J. also has a very impressive list of credits in other films and works including “The Wolf of Wall Street”, “Final Destination 5″, and so many more. You can view his full filmography at the link….
Pre-purchase an autograph from one of our special guests and be the first in line! Everyone who pre-registers for a VIP or 2-Day pass and pre-purchases an autograph will receive an exclusive #TeamAvatar badge! *If you have already purchased a VIP or 2 day pass and would like to upgrade to the #TeamAvatar badge, pre-purchase an autograph and we’ll take care of the rest! Register before March 1st and Save 25% on all passes with promo code TeamAvatar!
Voice actor Rob Paulsen welcomes JANET VARNEY, star of The Legend of Korra, to Talkin’ Toons LIVE on Tuesday November 11, 2014 at 8:00 PM at the Hollywood Improv!
The world-famous Hollywood Improv is proud to invite you to join Emmy and Annie award winner Rob Paulsen as he talks about his experiences in voice acting!
About Rob Paulsen:
Born in Detroit, Rob Paulsen spent his childhood in Livonia and Rochester, attending Junior and Senior high school in Grand Blanc, Michigan. Rob loved cartoons like most kids but aspired to be a professional hockey player. “Fortunately, thanks to some big, strong, kid from Winnipeg who drilled me so hard my ears are still ringing, I learned around age 18 I had neither the talent nor the temperament to make a living playing hockey. So, I turned to my other passions: singing and acting.”
The goal of bringing absolute believability to a fictional character, live-action or animated, is what every actor strives for. Those who are committed to their career and who combine experience, passion and skill are likely to succeed.
Those gifted with exceptional talent who focus on maximizing their potential by finding their own niche, quickly break away from the pack. After years of honing their craft and consistently delivering memorable performances in which the character impacts an indelible image on the viewer, the public and the industry take notice, singling out the best.
“I’m getting paid to do what I got in trouble for in the 7th grade,” jests Rob, who won a Daytime Emmy in 1999 as “Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program” for Pinky and The Brain (Warner Bros.) Though nominated twice previously, the victory was especially sweet due to some formidable competition – fellow nominees Louie Anderson, Ernest Borgnine, Dennis Franz and Jeffery Tambor. In addition to his Emmy, Rob won back-to-back Annie Awards in 1997 and 1998. “I absolutely love what I do and thank my lucky stars for twenty-five years of full-time employment in this business,” he says.
“It’s a treat to portray a complex character,” Rob explains about Pinky, a goof-ball mouse with funny teeth, a head filled with clouds and an inane imagination that is punctuated with a staccato laugh. “Besides … where else could I find a job where emotional outbursts and odd exclamations like ‘Egad!,’ ‘Narf!,’ ‘Poit!,’ ‘Splonk!,’ and ‘Zort!’ are allowed and in fact, encouraged?” With over 2,000 half-hours of animation to his credit, Rob’s versatility shines in his starring roles as the voices of Yakko, Pinky and Dr. Scratch ‘n’ Sniff in the Peabody and two-time Emmy award-winning series “Animaniacs.”
Some of Rob’s other well-known animated characters include Raphael of the “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” Arthur in “The Tick,” the title role in “The Mask” (for a WHOLE lot less dough than Mr. Carrey, thank you), the title role in “Mighty Max,” Carl Wheezer in “Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius,” Jack Fenton in “Danny Phantom,” Bobble in the “Tinkerbell” series of DVDs and hopefully more to come.
Paulsen’s extensive credits include on-camera roles in numerous motion pictures including Body Double, Stewardess School, Eyes of Fire, The Perfect Match, and Warlocked. His television acting credits include guest-starring roles on MacGyver and St. Elsewhere. Additionally, he is one of the most sought-after voice actors in the commercial arena, performing in over 1000 commercial spots.
As passionate about “paying it forward” as he is about his lucrative career, Rob supports various charitable organizations, particularly those benefiting children and military veterans. Rob’s volunteer work with GOALmodels has been particularly rewarding. GOALmodels, a high school program in Reseda, California, is designed to inspire 9th graders to set goals and overcome obstacles in life. Blending his life experiences with passion for his work, his presentations are informative, entertaining and inspiring. In his leisure time, Rob enjoys golf, riding his motorcycle and occasionally lacing up his skates for another chance to relive his past glory on the rink. He spends the majority of his free time with his wife, Parrish, and their two Yorkshire terriers, Pooshie and Tala.
8162 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90048
Last week saw the premiere of the final season of Nickelodeon’s acclaimed animated series The Legend of Korra. Give Team Avatar a proper send off at the several events that have been scheduled for New York Comic Con!
Nickelodeon’s Legend of Korra: Book 4
Thu. October 9| 5:15 PM – 6:15 PM | Empire Stage 1-E
Please join Executive Producer and Creator team Bryan Konietzko and Mike DiMartino (Avatar: The Last Airbender) as they provide a tantalizing glimpse behind the curtain of this ground-breaking animated series. Special Guests include Voice Actors Janet Varney (Korra), David Faustino (Mako) and P.J. Byrne (Bolin). Includes an exclusive screening of a never-before-seen episode from Korra’s final season. Moderated by Megan Casey, Vice President, Current Series, Nickelodeon Animation.
Dark Horse Comics Signing | Booth #1636
Friday, October 10| 11:00 a.m.–12:50 p.m. | Hellboy Stage
AVATAR: THE LAST AIRBENDER, THE LEGEND OF KORRA: Michael Dante DiMartino, Bryan Konietzko
(WRISTBAND REQUIRED. Wristbands will be distributed by drawing in the Dark Horse booth on Thursday and Friday at show opening.)
Avatar: The Last Airbender: Legend and Legacy
Sun. October 12| 2:15 PM – 3:00 PM| 1A06
Join Avatar Mom (moderator), Monica McClain (Illustrator/Art Instructor), Alison Wilgus (Artist/Writer), Kevin Coppa (Puppetbenders Creator), Sifu Manuel Rodriguez (Martial Arts Choreographer for Toph Beifong) and Jessie Flower (voice of Toph Beifong) for Avatar: The Last Airbender art, history, demonstrations and stories – plus a live comic reading from Dark Horse Comics’ The Rift. Attending Cosplayers may win books and signed original Legend of Korra animation drawings donated by Studio Mir!
Dark Horse Comics Signing | Booth #1636
Sunday, October 12| 03:30 p.m.–04:30 p.m. | Hellboy Stage
AVATAR: THE LAST AIRBENDER, THE LEGEND OF KORRA: Jessie Flower (voice actor of Toph Beifong)
(WRISTBAND REQUIRED. Wristbands will be distributed by drawing in the Dark Horse booth on Saturday and Sunday at show opening.)
Additionally Dark Horse will have on sale a their booth at limited number of Avatar Aang Memorial Statues as seen below.
This past weekend was ConnectiCon in Hartford, CT. Founded in 2002 primarily as a gaming convention, it has come to encompass multiple genres and attracts attendees from all over the country. It roots in gaming are still clearly apparent as they host a gaming room equal the size of the main vendor/artist area which hosted hundreds if not thousands of gamers playing Magic: The Gathering, Yu-Gi-Oh, WarHammer, and many other table top games. Naturally there is also a large contingent of cosplayers dressed as their favorite characters from TV, moves, comic books and video games. The projected attendenace fo this year was 17,000 people and while there were certainly a lot of people in the Hartford Convention Center, it was laid out and organized so it never felt crowded. The autograph lines for guests moved surprisingly fast and, provided you showed up a little early, panels were easy to get into.
A big draw for this year’s ConnectiCon was the wealth of guests from the voice acting industry. A growing trend at conventions across the country, these talented performers need only a microphone to display their gift for breathing life into characters. Guests included Invader Zim’s Richard Horvitz and Rikki Simons, Pinky and the Brain’s Maurice LaMarche and Rob Paulsen, Batman: The Brave and the Bold’s Dietrich Bader, Mass Effect’s Jennifer Hale, and Legend of Korra’s Janet Varney. Speaking to the press, Horvitz and Simons said they love having meeting fans who grew up watching Zim and are now cosplaying as their characters. The also mentioned people sometime have full sleeve tattoos where they leave room to get autographed. Horvitz said, “We always ask them to please not get murdered because we’re afraid the police will think the killer signed their work.”
As an actor who had success in on-screen roles on The Drew Carey Show, Outsourced, and Office Space, Bader remarked that he is in awe at the talent of his cartoon co-stars and how unpretentious and friendly most are compared to the rest of Hollywood. When asked what his favorite character to play was, Bader immediately and unequivocally said “Batman.” Prior to being cast on Brave and the Bold Bader had not been terribly well-versed in Bat-lore but said that getting into character really moved him especially in the scene where Batman confronts his parents’ killer, during Bader said he had literal tears running down his face.
On panels with LaMarche and Paulsen it was readily evident that their their friendship and work relationship easily rolls into one another. Paulsen remarked several times that his co-stars are people with whom he would choose to be friends had they never met at work. They often finished one another’s jokes and would goad the other into saying a favorite line or catchphrase. They credited a mutual love of Monty Python and Beyond the Fringe as instantly cementing their bond when the first worked together.
LaMarche and Paulsen shared many stories from Animaniacs and Pinky and the Brain, one being the famous “Yes, Always” sketch in which LaMarche faithfully recreates a famous outtake of Orson Welles recording a commercial for peas in which the famous director angrily tells off the staff. LaMarche had regaled his co-stars, directors, and engineers with his rendition so it was added to the script as a suprise for LaMarche. They also regaled the audience to a reading of “Green Eggs in Ham” with Paulsen reading Sam I Am (in the voice of Pinky) and LaMarche playing the main character as the Brain. The showstopper, however, was Paulsen singing “Yakko’s World” in which he rattles off every single country in the world to which the entire crowd clapped along.
Finally, Janet Varney who voices the title character of The Legend of Korra spoke about the series to a full panel room of Avatar-fans. She noted that they all had very pointed questions regarding many of Korra’s decisions on the show. Varney said while she often disagrees with Korra’s actions that is part of what makes her a well-rounded character. Twice during the Q&A Varney had to apologize for “rudely” taking a phone call. The first was from Firelord Zuko (actor Dante Basco) who called in to look for his honor and the second was Bolin (voice actor PJ Byrne), both whom were kind enough to say hello to the fans and field a question or two.
Fans were very excited to meet the people who helped bring their animated favorites to life. LaMarche said it best, “Hearing I made your childhood better makes my middle age better.” Here’s looking forward to seeing what voice talents are scheduled for next year’s show!
Fans of pop culture from across the Northeast and around the world will gather at the Connecticut Convention Center July 10th-13th, for the twelfth annual ConnectiCon in Hartford, CT. Founded in 2002, ConnectiCon is the largest massively multi-genre convention in New England.
This year’s event showcases over 7,000 hours of programming spread out over four days including; informative panels and hands-on workshops, special guest and celebrity appearances, trading card games, board games, and roleplaying games, including dozens of scheduled tournaments, console gaming and arcade machines. ConnectiCon is proud to introduce the Northeast League of Legends Tournament with over $6,000 in prizes!
ConnectiCon features main events such as, “Nerd Prom,” which is held Thursday evening at 8:30pm, tickets are available online. “ConnectiCon’s Singled Out!” Contestants, who pre-register online, will have a chance to win a date sponsored by ConnectiCon at a local participating restaurant. There’s also a ConnectiCon Masquerade Event held on Saturday, and the ConnectiCon “Cosplay Death match!” Plus many other fantastic events!
ConnectiCon will host nearly 90 special guests and celebrities including stars of stage and screen such as Noah Hathaway (The Neverending Story), Walter Jones (Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers), Alan Oppenheimer (Masters of the Universe), Janet Varney (Legend of Korra), Jennifer Hale (Mass Effect), Maurice LaMarche (Futurama) and Rob Paulsen (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and Richard Horvitz and Rikki Simons of the cartoon Invader Zim and Internet celebrity, Doug Walker, AKA That Guy With The Glasses. Joining them are voice actors Chris Cason, Danielle McRae, Ellen McLain, and Lauren Landa, comic creator Farel Dalrymple, and dozens of other talented guests.
Annual memberships to ConnectiCon are available online or at the door, and include access to all four days of the convention, as well as quarterly member appreciation days and other events year-round. It’s fun for the entire family! For more information please go to their website www.connecticon.org or Facebook page.
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**UPDATE** The Walking Dead’s Steven Yuen joins the panel for the debut of his performance as Wan, the original Avatar! Voice-actors PJ Byrne (Bolin) and Janet Varney (Korra herself!) have been added to the lineup! Plus there will be an NYCC exclusive poster. And a screening of the episodes “Beginnings: Part One,” which introduces the original avatar Wan! More details via Korra Nation!
Join Executive Producer Bryan Konietzko and Co-Executive Producer Joaquim Dos Santos at New York Comic Con on Saturday October 12, 2013 at 11am as they pull back the curtain to reveal sneak peeks of what’s to come in Legend of Korra Book 2: Spirits. Exclusive artwork, never-before-seen footage, and a discussion with special guests from the incredible “The Legend of Korra“ voice cast will be featured! Moderated by Bryan Konietzko.
Konietzko says on his Tumblr: “It’s just like San Diego Comic-Con, minus the hyphen! It has been a long time since we made it out to a convention other than SDCC, and we know that fact bums out a lot of non-SoCal/SoCal-accessible fans. We wish that we could venture out more, but even just prepping for and visiting San Diego once a year takes a lot of time out of our jam-packed production schedule, so traveling even further for conventions is usually not an option. But we’re going to make it happen anyway for NYCC, and we’re really looking forward to it!
Unfortunately Mike can’t make it, but Joaquim and I will be joined by some special guests at the panel Saturday, October 12th at 11:00 am. Lots of cool stuff in the works for the presentation. We’re putting together a signing on that Saturday too, so I’ll update with more info when I have it.
See you East Coasters soon!“
Location: Empire Stage 1-E Presented By: Arizona Beverage Co.
For more information on Legend of Korra, join Korra Nation at the link!
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The Legend of Korra makes its long-awaited return to Nickelodeon for its second season this Friday September 13, 2013 at 7:00 pm EST with a one-hour premiere! Korra Nation has posted an exclusive new trailer featuring unseen footage of Korra, Mako, Bolin, Tenzin, and more! Plus glimpses of the Spirit World and brand-new characters! Click the link to watch it!
In addition they have offered a sneak peek at production material such as early character studies for Tenzin’s older brother Bumi (click the link), storyboards of Bolin meeting new characters Eska and Desna (click the link), background art of the Glacial Spirits Festival (click the link), and the interior of the Southern Water Tribe Palace (click the link)!
For more about The Legend of Korra, sign up for Korra Nation at the link!