Cartoon Stars Shine at ConnectiCon 2014

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!

IMG_0829[1]

 

IMG_0831[1]

 

IMG_0827[1]

 

IMG_0826[1]

 

IMG_0830[1]

 

IMG_0825[1]

 

IMG_0824[1]

 

IMG_0815[1]

 

IMG_0817[1]

 

IMG_0812[1]

 

IMG_0822[1]

 

IMG_0811[1]

 

IMG_0819[1]

 

IMG_0823[1]

Fans Gather at 12th Annual ConnectiCon This Weekend

CTCon14

Press Release:

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.

Look Who’s Coming to MegaCon 2014…Comic Creators and Celebrities Announced

The Governor

Press Release:

ORLANDO MEGACON – Look What’s Happening

MegaCon, the largest comic book, anime, gaming and multi media event in the southeastern U.S., begins announcing guests for the 2014 show. MegaCon will take place March 21 -23, 2014 at the Orange County Convention Center Hall SB in the North/South Building in Orlando, FL.

Confirmed comic book guests include:
J. Scott Campbell, Frank Brunner, Neal Adams, Bill Sienkiewicz, Mark Waid, Ron Marz, Greg Land, Michael Golden, Dennis Calero, George Pérez, Brandon Peterson, Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti, Cully Hamner, Karl Story, Renee Witterstaetter, Billy Tucci (20th anniversary of Shi) and Brian Pulido (15th anniversary of Lady Death), Nick Bradshaw, Adam Kubert, Dan Jurgens, Mike Miller, Joshua Ortega, Digger, Bart Sears, Ethan Van Sciver, Mike McKone, Frank Tieri, Mike Mayhew, Chuck Dixon, Skottie Young

Confirmed media guests include:
Walking Dead – Lauren Cohan, Steven Yeun, David Morrissey, Beth Kinney, Sonequa Martin-Green
Torchwood – John Barrowman, Eve Myles, Burn Gorman, Gareth David-Lloyd
Torchwood animated series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Dollhouse – Eliza Dushku
Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Torchwood – James Marsters
Smallville – Michael Rosenbaum, Allison Mack, John Glover, Laura Vandervoort, Aaron Ashmore
Napolean Dynamite – John Heder
Battlestar Galactica – Richard Hatch, Dirk Benedict, Herbert Jefferson, Anne Lockhart
Star Wars – Peter Mayhew, Tom Kane
Comic Book Men – Mike Zapcic, Ming Chen, Bryan Johnson
Star Trek, Big Bang Theory – Wil Wheaton;

Voice Actors:
Rob Paulsen, Jim Cummings, Quinton Flynn, Phil LaMarr, Rich Horvitz, Vic Mignogna, Jennifer Hale

You won’t want to miss Comos

First time ever official MegaCon Friday evening Dance for 18+ only
Costume Contest – Drinks – Dancing
Spectacular Laser show & visuals by Empire Visuals
Nelson Flux – Evolv 3
Hosted by Nick Wolfe
$10 – Friday evening from 9pm – 11:30pm

Introducing: The Ghost of the Robot Band with James Marsters – Saturday evening performance $20 in advance $25 at the door.

Other events include: MegaCon video gaming and the Supercon 2K series provided by National Video Gaming Association and Vibras Five.One, RPG, LARP, card and miniature gaming events, children events provided by the Skiffytown Heroes, Speed Dating, anime events, belly dancing, Indy Film Festival, movie trailers screening room, Saturday evening dance, late night adult only dance, and professional panel room.

Thanks to our sponsors: 101.1 WJRR, The am 740 Game, 104.1 Real Radio, Certified Guaranty Company, Central Florida Mensa, Students of the Unusual

The MegaCon guest list is constantly growing. Check www.MegaConvention.com frequently for more updates.

MegaCon 2014
Orange County Convention Center
Orlando, Florida
March 21st – 23rd
Contact Info: info@megaconvention.com or www.megaconvention.com

Emerald City Comicon Makes Final Voice Actor Guest Announcements for 2013

Jennifer Hale

Press Release:

All Hail! All Hale! Disney’s Cinderella to have a “mass effect” in the Emerald City! Video game hero Raiden to get into “gear” for Seattle!

Disney princess and video game king to reign in the Northwest at ECCC 2013!

Seattle, WA – Prolific film, television and video game voice actors Jennifer Hale  (the voice of Disney’s “Cinderella”) and Quinton Flynn are the seventh and eighth (and final) voice actor guests to be announced for the upcoming Emerald City Comicon taking place on March 1st – 3rd, 2013 at the Washington State Convention Center. They will be appearing all three days!

Jennifer Hale is regarded as royalty just as much in the video game world as she is for her work with Disney. She holds the distinction of providing the voice for not just one Disney princess, “Cinderella” from Cinderella 2: Dreams Come True and Cinderella 3: A Twist in Time as well as “Princess Aurora” from Sleeping Beauty fame in House of Mouse.

One of the busiest voices in video games, Hale has worked on such player favorites as “Commander Shepard” in the Mass Effect trilogy, Diablo 3, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Halo 4, Guild Wars 2, “Naomi Hunter” from Metal Gear Solid and as “Silver Sable” in various Spider-Man games.

Hale also has an impressive television voice over resume, including “Princess Morbucks” on The Powerpuff Girls, both “Sam” and “Mandy’ on Totally Spies!, “Ms. Marvel” on The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, “Aayla Secura” on Star Wars: The Clone Wars, “Jun” on Avatar: The Last Airbender, and “Carol Ferris” on Green Lantern: The Animated Series.

Born in Canada and raised in the United States, Hale has been doing voices for video games, animation, commercials, radio promotions, anime and movies since 1993. She is currently prepping her first solo CD.

Quinton Flynn’s television credits include the voice of “Timon” on Disney’s Timon & Pumbaa, “Johnny Storm / Human Torch on Fantastic Four, “Johnny Quest” on The Real Adventures of Johnny Quest and currently heard as “Elmer Fudd” on Robot Chicken. Also a busy performer in the world of Anime, his roles include “Iruka” on  Naruto: Shippûden, “Kon” on Bleach and “Marcus Damon” on Digimon Data Squad.

Flynn is perhaps best known for his voice over work on some of the most popular video games around, including “Raiden” in the Metal Gear series, “Reno” in multiple installments of Final Fantasy, “Axel” in the Kingdom Hearts games, as well as Mass Effect 2 &3, Guild Wars 2 and Crash Bandicoot.

Flynn also has acted on camera as Sir Paul McCartney in such productions as the Hendrix themed biopic My Dinner with Jimi as well as The Beatles parody A Hard Day’s Day.

Hale and Flynn join previously announced voice actors Jim Cummings (Winnie the Pooh, The Lion King),  Phil LeMarr (Futurama, MADtv), Grey DeLisle (“Daphne” from Scooby-Doo), Kevin Michael Richardson (“Cleveland Brown, Jr.” from The Cleveland Show), Richard Horvitz and Rikki Simons, both from Nickelodeon’s Invader Zim.

ECCC’s celebrity guest roster includes  Sir Patrick Stewart (“Captain Jean-Luc Picard in Star Trek The Next Generation, “Dr. Charles Xavier” from the X-Men films), Billy Dee Williams (“Lando Calrissian” from The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi), Walter Koenig (“Chekov” from classic Star Trek), Natalia Tena (Harry Potter, Game of Thrones), Paul McGillion (Stargate Atlantis), Michael Shanks (Saving Hope, Stargate SG-1), Kristin Bauer (“Pam” from HBO’s True Blood), Gillian Anderson (“Agent Scully” from The X-Files), Chandler Riggs (“Carl Grimes” on AMC’s The Walking Dead), Adam West (TV’s classic Batman), Dirk Benedict (“Faceman” from The A-Team, Battlestar Galactica) and Danai Gurira (“Michonne” on AMC’s The Walking Dead). More fantastic celebrity guests yet to be announced!

Tickets for Emerald City Comicon 2013 are ON SALE NOW by visiting www.emeraldcitycomicon.com or any number of local comic book stores, also listed on the website!

ECCC 2013 will feature its most expansive variety of film/television stars, voice actors, comic guests, vendors, merchandise, gaming, contests, artists, speakers and pop culture yet!

With record-breaking attendance of over 53,000 attendees in 2012, Emerald City Comicon has established itself as one of North America’s largest and most respected shows of its kind anywhere in the world and has become the premier event of its kind in the Northwest. Founded in 2003 by Jim Demonakos, Geekwire’s “Geek of the Year” Award winner and owner of KING 5′s “Best of the Northwest” The Comic Stop chain of stores, ECCC has become highly regarded in both national and international circles as one of the most fan- and family-friendly shows in existence.

Look for regular press releases containing all of the latest news leading up to the show in March 2013. For more information, please visit ECCC’s website at www.emeraldcitycomicon.com

CA – Animated Voices of Christmas

Rachael MacFarlane (Hayley Smith on American Dad!) hosts a holiday musical revue to benefit Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles at the Catalina Jazz Club on Sunday, December 2, 2012 at 7:30 pm. Special guests include: Dee Bradley Baker, Alex Borstein, Corey Burton, Grey DeLisle, Anna Graves, Seth Green, Scott Grimes, Jennifer Hale, Jess Harnell, Kevin Michael Richardson, Tara Strong, Cree Summer, Kari Wahlgren and more!

$50.00 tickets available at the link.

Catalina Jazz Club
6725 W. Sunset Blvd, Hollywood, CA 90028
Phone: 323.466.2210

SacAnime (August 2012)

May 2, 2012 by  
Filed under Anime, California, Convention Profiles

SacAnime Summer 2012 Logo

Convention Name
SacAnime
Convention Website Address
http://www.sacanime.com
This convention will take place:
  • over multiple days.
Start Date (Format mm/dd/yyyy)
08/31/2012
End Date (Format mm/dd/yyyy)
09/02/2012
About This Convention
SacAnime is the anime convention “Where Fans Come to Play”, providing Japanese influenced pop culture fun for the entire family. Events include live outdoor concerts with Eyeshine and akaiSky, a huge vendors room, cosplay masquerade, lolita tea party, maid cafe, video game tournaments, artists alley, panels and workshops and much more. Special Guests include voice actors Jennifer Hale (Mass Effect, Metroid, Star Wars), Johnny Yong Bosch (Power Rangers, Bleach, Akira), Roger Craig Smith (Sonic the Hedgehog, Assassin’s Creed, Resident Evil), Michelle Ruff (Bleach), Travis Willingham (Full Metal Alchemist, Streetfighter IV, Super Hero Squad) and Laura Bailey (Full Metal Alchemist, Streetfighter IV, Fruits Basket, Blood Rayne).
Venue Name and Address
Woodlake Hotel
500 Leisure Lane
Sacramento, CA 95815
United States
Map It
Number of Dealer/Exhibitor Tables
75
Projected Attendance
5000
Please select the Category that best describes the convention
Anime
Guests
Jennifer Hale, Roger Craig Smith, Michelle Ruff, Johnny Yong Bosch, Travis Willingham, Laura Bailey

SacAnime Summer 2012 Flier