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  • Wizard World Comic Con Raleigh 2015 Report! (Including an Interview with Kevin Sorbo)

    Back in the fall of 2014, when I saw that Wizard World, that latter-day arbiter of pop culture sensibilities, was having its first-ever convention in Raleigh, North Carolina on March 13-15, I thought, Cool. I had been to the Minneapolis and Chicago shows, traveling hundreds of miles to write about each (see here and here, respectively). Raleigh is only 45 minutes from my house.

    When I later saw that William Shatner would be at Raleigh Wizard World, I thought, Sweet. Who better than the Captain to explore this strange, new world? I watched as more excellent guests were announced—Sean Astin, John Schneider, Kevin Sorbo. And when I saw Rob Liefeld, the creator of Deadpool, added to the list, I thought, Awesome! Liefeld is one of the hottest comic artists of the last twenty years. I need some more stuff signed by him.

    And when I received an email on February 24 from Wizard World’s PR person telling me that Doctor Who’s David Tennant would be in Raleigh, I thought, Oh. My. God.

    David Tennant! No offense to other guests, but this was huge. Poll after poll shows him as the most popular Doctor among Whovians (see here, here, and here). Tennant’s Doctor is charming, funny, and passionate. Christopher Eccleston, the Ninth Doctor, did the hard work of rebooting the twenty-year-dead series in 2005; Tennant presided over its expansion both in the UK and across the pond. Plus he is a rarity on the convention circuit. Raleigh would be, in fact, his Wizard World debut (his second appearance will be in Philadelphia this May).

    I am a middling Doctor Who fan. My wife and daughter? Rabid. And their favorite, of course, is David Tennant. My wife makes and sells fandom-related jewelry, and she had another convention that weekend in Winston-Salem, about two hours away. Urban Dictionary defines fandom as “a cult that will destroy your life”; I prefer to think of it as the impetus for restructuring your life on the fly. Thus, after much wrangling and a pair of David Tennant VIP tickets ($399 each!), we settled on the following schedule:

    Friday: My wife and me at Wizard World, our daughter at the Winston-Salem convention

    Saturday: All of us at the Winston convention

    Sunday: My wife and my daughter at Wizard World to see David Tennant, me at the Winston convention

    Actually, my weekend started on Thursday, at the Wizard World launch party. It was held at the Marbles Kids Museum in downtown Raleigh.

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    Advertisements for the party indicated that celebrities (plural) would be in attendance, though the only one I saw was Kevin Sorbo, star of the 90s hit series Hercules. Still, we had a nice chat:

    Me: You have been in several faith-based movies [What If . . . and God’s Not Dead]. What is it about these movies that speaks to people?

    Kevin: There are a lot of people who have faith. All the polls show like 80% of people believe in God. We tend to skim over that, and Hollywood doesn’t put out movies that deal with that. And when they do, they sort of bastardize it. Look what they did with Exodus. Look what they did with Noah, for crying out loud. Why would you hire atheist directors to do something out of the Old Testament? It’s weird to me.

    Me: The emphasis there seems to be more on special effects.

    Kevin: Yeah. We went to a private screening of Noah, and my wife said, “This is like Transformers meets Water World.” Visually, it’s beautiful, but you’re like, does the Bible talk about Noah being schizophrenic, alcoholic, and hell-bent on killing his own family at the end?

    Me: You’ve had a varied career, but of course you’re most known for Hercules . . .

    Kevin: Yeah, that and Andromeda.

    Me: Right. How did your role in Hercules come about?

    Kevin: It was a typical audition through Hollywood. My agent called me up and said, “They’re casting five Hercules movies, and they want to see you.” I said, “I’m a big guy, but don’t they want some steroid dude with no neck or some bodybuilder who weighs 280 pounds?” He said, “No, they’re looking for an athletic-looking, sort-of decathlon, Joe Namath-type quarterback.” So I went and read. They called me back and called me back. Seven times they called me back. I was up in Vancouver, Canada filming an episode of The Commish, and they called me and said, “You’re Hercules.” I thought it was going to be five two-hour movies. Then, boom! It became a series, and it passed Baywatch to become the most-watched show in the world.

    Me: Before filming, how did you get into the role? How did you prepare yourself to play a mythical hero?

    Kevin: It was all in the writing. They made the character very 90s. It was a very Malibu sort of Hercules. He was very hip and accessible and approachable, very self-effacing. There was a lot of humor. The fight scenes were never very violent. Our spin-off show, Xena, was a much more violent show, killing guys. We never killed a guy.

    Me: Speaking of writing, you did a book a couple of years ago. What was that like?

    Kevin: It’s been great because of the number of speaking appearances I get. I did a dozen last year, and I’ve already got about eleven more lined up this year. It’s been amazing to get out there and do all the talking I’ve been doing about the book, which is about a health scare I suffered. I was the healthiest-looking guy in the world in the 90s, and I had three strokes and almost died. It took me out of the show [Hercules] for four months. We had to re-write everything.

    Me: Which is harder, writing or acting?

    Kevin [laughs]: I think writing is much harder. Writers take much of the blame for everything in Hollywood, so God bless them. It’s the toughest job around.

    Me: How did you get started doing conventions?

    Kevin: You know, conventions really didn’t kick off until about fifteen years ago. The growth has been astronomical. In the 90s, comic cons weren’t that big. They were around, but there wasn’t the publicity and the push and the hype. I got invited during the 90s, but I could do only one or two a year because I was in New Zealand ten months out of the year [filming Hercules]. Now, I go to a lot around the world. I’m doing two in April in Australia. I have one coming up in Belgium. I get invited to about five a month, and I go to six or seven a year.

    Me: Are there things you won’t do for fans? Are there lines fans try to get you to cross that you push back against?

    Kevin: Not really. Women have not exposed their breasts to me, but they have wanted me to sign the top of their chests. Some people get very nervous because they know you from TV, and now they’re seeing you in the flesh. It’s a surreal moment for them, and I get that because when I first moved to L.A., I started meeting some of the celebrities I used to watch on TV, and I was like, “Wow. That’s really him standing there.” For me, it was Anthony Quinn [who played Zeus in Hercules]. Meeting him blew me away.

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    The next night, Friday, was my night at Wizard World. It is often said that Wizard World, with its deep pockets and runaway costs, delights in squeezing out local conventions. See, for example, this article decrying “William Shatner at $199 an autograph,” which is ludicrously inflated. Shatner charges less than half that amount, and he has charged it for years.

    What has changed, and not for the better, is the number of comic book artists who now charge for an autograph. Michael Golden charged $10. Dean Haspiel (who?) charged $10. Tom DeFalco gave one or two free signatures, but he charged after that due to, as the sign on his table exhorted, the miserable capitalists who sell his stuff on eBay.

    And Rob Liefeld. When I saw him in 2012, he charged $20 to sign copies of New Mutants #87 (first appearance of Cable) or #98 (first appearance of Deadpool). Everything else was free. Now he charges $30 for any Deadpool item, $20 for any New Mutants or X-Force issue, and $20 for any book being witnessed by CGC. He’s still a cool guy, though, and he did not charge me for this picture.

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    I get that writers and artists are trying to make a living. A market exists for their autographs that they did not create and are merely tapping into. But their judgment—or is jealousy?—of collectors feels wrong-headed. eBay does not lower payments to creators (a buyer’s market does that) nor deprive them of ownership of their work (publishers retain this). Besides, CGC’s fees are rich enough. To pay an extra $20 for the signature hurts.

    Perhaps it was this increase in signing fees that was responsible for the small crowd.

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    Or the fact that few celebrities showed up for opening night (aside from Tony Stark).

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    The dealer’s room was livelier, but what struck me most there was the dearth of comic book dealers. I counted two. The rest had toys, decals, T-shirts, etc. Curiously, there were also the Lasik Vision Institute and the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, giving the dealer’s room a festival-in-the-park feel. I left without buying anything (or scheduling eye surgery).

    I tried to buy a third David Tennant autograph ticket for Sunday, the day my wife and daughter would be there, for my daughter’s friend. But they were not selling any more tickets until Sunday morning—possibly (as it turned out, they didn’t have more then, either). “It’s the first time we’ve worked with him,” said the apologetic young woman, “and we’re not sure what to expect.” Translation: they had under-prepared. Wizard World has remedied this (sort of) for Philadelphia, making David Tennant photos and autographs available only to VIP ticket buyers. It’s an imperfect solution: a limited quantity of tickets at a cost that prices a lot of people out of contention. But at least they won’t run out by the first day of the con.

    So my daughter’s friend lost out. My wife and daughter, however, racked up, each of them receiving (1) any item autographed, (2) a professional photo-op, (3) a David Tennant collector’s card, (4) other Doctor Who stuff, and (5) a limited edition Walking Dead comic book with a black-and-white sketch cover by Dean Haspiel (so that’s who he is!). And they got into the Tennant Q&A, which, we found out, was open only to VIPs because the room was so small. (My question: why didn’t they rearrange the rooms? It’s David Tennant. You can bump the Harry Potter fan fiction panel to a snack bar table.)

    If the crowd was meager on Friday, it had Hulked up by Sunday. There were 500 VIP ticket holders that day (600 on Saturday), plus who knows how many who managed to get a one-day autograph or photo ticket before they were sold out. My wife took over 100 pictures during the Q&A, enough to allow us to play a game called The Many Faces of David Tennant.

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    David ponders why the TARDIS isn’t cleaner on the inside.

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    David does his Gilbert Gottfried impression.

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    David whistles “Dixie,” because he’s in the South.

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    David tries to hypnotize the crowd but puts himself to sleep.

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    This is David Tennant, not David Bowie.

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    “Blimey, Rose! I told you to close the TARDIS door before take-off!”

    Tennant is surprised at how popular Doctor Who has become in the United States—surprised but pleased. Asked about his acting career, he said he likes the variety of roles (in his new drama, Broadchurch, he plays a character as far from the Doctor as you can imagine). Whom would he cosplay as at a convention? “Someone with a mask, so I could enjoy the convention.” One questioner recommended that he try the barbecue before leaving North Carolina. This apparently led to a discussion of food in which he dissed American bacon (too dry and crunchy).  Another asked him who he fanboys over. Answer: Marvel Comics, which he had recently toured.

    After the Q&A came photos, and about an hour after that, the signing line started. When my daughter reached the table, she asked Tennant if she could record him saying hello to her friend (the one who got gypped on the autograph). Most celebs won’t do this, but in the absence of an advertised prohibition, it doesn’t hurt to ask. Astonishingly, he agreed! Then a Wizard World staffer stepped in and put a stop to it. Normally, I would rail against this, but the staffer had a point. If Tennant did that for my daughter, he would have to do it for everyone, which would slow the line to a crawl. The lesson for convention goers is this: guests aren’t being rude or aloof when they refuse some of your requests. The refusal may simply be a matter of convention policy.

    So the inaugural Wizard World Raleigh was a success. Great city, great guests, friendly service—and the Doctor. One woman my wife talked to had driven eight hours from Alabama with her two kids to see him. On top of the arm-and-leg-ness of VIP tickets, this struck me as insanely devoted. “Would you do that?” I asked my wife on Monday as she stared out the kitchen window, a melancholy smile on her face. “Yes,” she said without hesitation. “Yes I would.”

    Well-played, Wizard World. Well-played.

     

    Northeast Comic Con Offers Adam West and Kevin Sorbo VIP Experiences in June 2015

    NECC

    Press Release:

    Meet Batman and Hercules: VIP experiences now on sale for Northeast Comic Con and Collectibles Extravaganza

    Northeast Comic Con runs June 20 & 21 at Shriners Auditorium, Wilmington Mass.; VIP experiences are June 19th and 20th

    WILMINGTON,Mass. (March 24, 2015) – Fans of Adam West (Batman, Family Guy) and Kevin Sorbo (Hercules, Andromeda) are invited share a VIP experience with two legendary superstars celebrating anniversaries of their first TV episodes. Both fan experiences are just one element of the largest celebration of popularculture in New England, the Northeast Comic Con and Collectibles Extravaganza. This Father’s Day weekend event takes place Saturday June 20 and Sunday June 21, 2015 at the Shriners Auditorium in Wilmington, Mass. (99 Fordham Road). General show hours are 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday; VIP experiences are at 7 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday night, June 19th and 20th.

    FRIDAY, JUNE 19: Tickets are now on sale to fans of Kevin Sorbo, the handsome and talented star of Andromeda as well as Hercules: The Legendary Journeys celebrating its 20th anniversary of the first episode. Also held at the Shriners Auditorium Fez Room the evening before the Comic Con begins, tickets to the Kevin Sorbo VIP experience are $90, and limited to 100 fans. This VIP tickets includes weekend admission to both weekend days of the Northeast Comic Con (June 20 & 21) as well as a photo opportunity with Sorbo and a chance to watch the first episode of Hercules TV program, as introduced by Sorbo himself.

    SATURDAY, JUNE 20: Fans of the legendary Adam West, the original Batman (and now on Family Guy), can celebrate the 50th anniversary of the star’s first episode with a VIP event at 7 p.m. on Saturday, June 20th atthe Shriner’s Auditorium Fez room. The $100 VIP ticket provides fans with achance to get their photo with West and then screen the first episode of the1966 “Batman” TV program, introduced by West himself.

    Both VIP experiences include free gaming playon the exclusive Starship Horizon bridge simulator as well as liveentertainment, free soft drinks and snacks and a cash bar.

    More about Northeast ComicCon: Thisyear’s event features a40,000 sq. ft. entertainment experience for all nerds and the people who lovethem. Highlights include cosplay for all ages with“Create-A-Hero/Villain/Character” contests and a Cosplay Death Match andCosplay Dating Game, free-play video game arcade and tournaments, workshops forK!DZ, and celebrity autograph signings and panel sessions. Guests can shop at150 vendors of vintage and modern toys, comic books, collectibles, art,jewelry, fashion and pop cultural artifacts. In between Father’s Day shopping,guests of all ages will enjoy music, contests and entertainment to marvel atbetween sessions and booths.

    Withfree parking, regular Northeast Comic Con admission ticket prices are among thelowest in the industry. Advanced tickets are now available for purchase online;ticket prices will be higher at the door. Children under 7 are free whenaccompanied by an adult.

    For schedules, VIP packages and advance tickets, visit NortheastComicCon.net.For show inquiries, email garysohmers@gmail.com. For media and sponsorship inquiries,contact Julie Dennehy, Dennehy PR, Julie@dennehypr.com.

    Mayim Bialik Appears as Keynote Speaker at Evolution Expo 2014

    mbialik

    Evolution Expo 2014 is proud to welcome Mayim Bialik as our Sunday Keynote Speaker. Other guests include stars of science (Dr. Pascal Lee, Dr. Chris McKay, Joe Edwards, Wendy Lawrence, John Jaquish) and screen (Jason Momoa, John Rhys-davies, Amanda Tapping, Katee Sackhoff, Tim Russ, Kevin Sorbo). Evolution Expo happens on June 27-29th, 2014, at the Oakland Marriott City Center! For full details go to the website: www.evolutionexpo.net

    About MAYIM BIALIK:

    Mayim Hoya Bialik is currently seen starring on the CBS Chuck Lorre hit comedy ‘The Big Bang Theory’, where she plays the role of Amy Farrah Fowler (a role for which she received an Emmy nomination in 2012 and 2013 in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Category). The show has received multiple awards show nominations and critical acclaim over the past six seasons, including nominations for; Emmy’s, SAG Awards, and the Golden Globe’s. The show won the 2013 People’s Choice Award for Favorite Network TV Comedy. Bialik was born in San Diego, California, to first generation Jewish American parents, documentary film makers and teachers. She played the young Bette Midler in ‘Beaches’, played the quirky Blossom Russo for 5 years on the NBC television sitcom ‘Blossom’, and also had guest roles on some of television’s most beloved shows of the 1980s and 1990s, such as ‘MacGuyver’, ‘Webster’, ‘Facts of Life’, and ‘Murphy Brown’. She also appeared in Woody Allen’s ‘Don’t Drink the Water’ in 1994, HBO’s ‘Fat Actress’, and the HBO comedy series ‘Curb your Enthusiasm’. Recent appearances include recurring roles on ‘Secret Life of the American Teenager’ and Fox’s ‘’Til Death’. She has also been a guest on some of televisions biggest talk shows such as: ‘The View’, ‘The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson’, ‘Tonight Show’, ‘Conan’, ‘The Talk’, ‘The Queen Latifah Show’, among many others.

    After ‘Blossom’, Bialik earned a BS from UCLA in 2000 in Neuroscience and Hebrew and Jewish Studies, and went on to the Ph.D. program in Neuroscience, also at UCLA. She completed her doctorate in the Fall of 2007, which examined Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder in adolescents with Prader-Willi syndrome. She is currently the spokesperson for Texas Instruments, inspiring young women to engage in careers that involve STEM. In March 2012 Mayim released her first book on attachment parenting through Simon & Schuster titled ‘Beyond the Sling’. The book guides parents through the world of attachment parenting and includes quotes of support from Ricki Lake and Dr. William Sears who himself coined the term ‘attachment parenting.’ She will release her second book titled ‘Mayim’s Vegan Table’, a Vegan family cookbook, February 2014 by Da Capo Press. Bialik is a board member of a variety of Jewish philanthropic organizations and contributes to a variety of charitable organizations such as the Gift of Life Foundation, PETA, and many others. She writes weekly for the Jewish parenting site Kveller.com about her life as an observant Jewish actress and mother, studies weekly independently and through Partners in Torah, and speaks for a variety of organizations around the United States.

     

    ND – True Strength Signing

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    Kevin Sorbo signs his memoir at Barnes & Noble on Saturday February 16, 2013 at 11:00 AM!

    About the book:

    On television, Kevin Sorbo portrayed an invincible demigod; in his real life, a sudden health crisis left him partially blind and incapacitated at just thirty-eight years old. Yet since appearances are everything in Hollywood, he hid the full details about his condition from the press and continued to film Hercules, which was the number one TV series in the world. In this inspiring memoir, Sorbo shares the story of the crisis that ultimately redefined his measure of success.

    True Strength is the story of transformation, persistence, and hope in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Sorbo reflects on his childhood in Minnesota and his early acting days in Hollywood, to his charmed life as television’s beloved Hercules, and where he is today. He recounts the onset of his symptoms, his frightening hospitalization, and his arduous path to recovery. With this honest account of personal tragedy and triumph, Sorbo aims to blaze a trail for those who have ever suffered acute illness or a serious setback in life and are now struggling to find their way back.

    Barnes & Noble
    1201 42 St SW, Fargo, ND 58103
    701-281-1002

    Scene on the Web: Boston Super MegaFest (November 2012)

    Scene on the Web: Boston Super Megafest (November 2012)

    Storified by Convention Scene · Mon, Nov 19 2012 08:30:05

    Thor and friends MegafestJoesSeph81
    With Kevin Sorbo at Boston MegaFest! #hercules http://pic.twitter.com/aZwLxJinAngel Williams
    @TheJackieHaas & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. Thx Jackie!!! http://yfrog.com/c9fq0ojTatanka
    @UGeneDinsmore , Rusty Goffe, one of his friends & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. http://yfrog.com/nstdgwjTatanka
    Hangin with @ActualALove , @VIVAROSITA & @NativeTatanka ! Such a fun wknd at Super Megafest!! http://pic.twitter.com/KpGKHcqhVelvet Sky
    At MegaFest with @RealDeanCain #SUPERMAN!! http://pic.twitter.com/0xVHsoTJAngel Williams
    #Avatar @ Super Megafest!So many cool people here! http://pic.twitter.com/6mhEREXBVelvet Sky
    Last day of megafest, can’t wait to go home to my kiddos and @CharlieHaas http://pic.twitter.com/f4YpMenZJackieHaas
    # super Megafest Frightful Acts http://pic.twitter.com/zMxV4xt1@Thebatsytwins
    Come see me as Jade, Batgirl @VelVelHoller & Ghost Busters bad ass @ActualALove at Boston Megafest now! http://pic.twitter.com/QoaXJk9nThea Trinidad
    Kevin Sorbo – Best known for Hercules with @UGeneDinsmore & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. http://yfrog.com/2ooz0cjTatanka
    John Amos an Emmy-nominated actor who starred on Good Times with myself @ Super Megafest 2012. A Great Guy! http://yfrog.com/n8lt3xjTatanka
    @jordancarver , @TheJackieHaas & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. http://yfrog.com/2f7b4ajTatanka
    @MariaLKanellis , @ROHMikeBennett & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. http://yfrog.com/f7nouvjTatanka
    Superhero Batman & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. http://yfrog.com/2fucrpjTatanka
    Don’t get this guy mad or he turns green & begins to CRUSH! Hulk & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. http://yfrog.com/0ikytujTatanka
    Transformer "Bumble Bee" w/Eugene & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. My Son Jeremiah loves this guy! http://yfrog.com/5gegl2jTatanka
    Dean Cain aka Superman & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. #SuperHeroCharactersAreAwesome http://yfrog.com/6f2sa5jTatanka
    2 beautiful women that make up a Knock-Out Tag Team! @ActualALove , @VelVelHoller & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. http://yfrog.com/cb9vnxjTatanka
    Darth Vader & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. http://yfrog.com/0z26ccjTatanka
    Jimmy Hart, Paul Bearer & myself @ Super Megafest 2012. #OldSchoolRules http://yfrog.com/jav1hajTatanka
    # super Megafest Deadpool http://pic.twitter.com/8JAMTIAm@Thebatsytwins
    Boston Megafest! http://pic.twitter.com/uvAsPkzEThea Trinidad
    We are at Super Megafest right now! Come see us! http://Supermegafest.com @actualalove @vivarosita http://pic.twitter.com/ORD04nZCVelvet Sky
    #Megafest just started! Come by to meet me! http://pic.twitter.com/X6Ai4F5fJordan Carver

    Wizard Wizard Chicago Comic Con 2012 Adds Kevin Sorbo

    Comments Off

    Press Release:

    A ‘Herculean’ Addition:  Kevin Sorbo To Attend 2012 Wizard World Chicago Comic Con

    Top TV Star For More Than Two Decades Joins 50+ Other Celebrities, Dozens of Top Creators At Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, August 9-12

    Hercules SorboNEW YORK and ROSEMONT, Ill., June 20, 2012 – Kevin Sorbo, known across the globe for his portrayal of the title character in the popular “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys” series, will appear as a special guest at Wizard World Chicago Comic Con, August 9-12 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center.  Sorbo, who has enjoyed continuous success on television for the past 20 years, will meet fans, sign autographs and pose for photos at Wizard World’s longest running and highest-attended show.

    The immense popularity of five initial two-hour “Hercules” telefilms in 1993 resulted in the launch of a weekly series by 1994 and helped launch Sorbo’s path to stardom. The series not only became a breakout hit by becoming the number one first-run program in syndication, it also passed “Baywatch” as the most watched TV show in the world.  The innovative action hour revitalized the entire action/adventure genre on television and fostered two spin-off series, “Xena, Warrior Princess”, and “Young Hercules”.  Sorbo also directed two episodes of the show, and co-wrote one installment.

    Following the success of “Hercules,” Sorbo went on to star in the lead role of “Captain Dylan Hunt” in “Gene Roddenberry’s, Andromeda.” The series, based upon writings from the late “Star Trek” creator’s archives, debuted as the number one hour show in first run syndication and held that spot throughout it’s five year run from 2000-2005.

    Sorbo will join other headliners like William Shatner, Stan Lee, Tom Felton, Scott Bakula, Jon Bernthal, Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino and WWE® Superstars CM Punk™ and John Cena®, notable artists Carlos Pacheco, George Pérez, Greg Capullo at the Midwest’s No. 1 Pop Culture Convention.

    Wizard World Chicago Comic Con (August 9-12), produced by Wizard World, Inc. (WIZD.PK), will bring together thousands of fans of all ages to celebrate the best in pop-fi, pop culture, movies, graphic novels, comics, toys, video gaming, television, sci-fi, gaming, original art, collectibles, contests and more.

    For more on the 2012 Wizard World Chicago Comic Con, visit http://www.wizardworld.com/home-ch.html.

    About Wizard World:
    Wizard World produces Comic Cons and pop culture conventions across North America that celebrate graphic novels, comic books, movies, TV shows, gaming, technology, toys and social networking. The events often feature celebrities from movies and TV, artists and writers, and events such as premieres, gaming tournaments, panels, and costume contests.

    The full event schedule can be found at www.wizardworld.com.

    ***** SAVE THE 2012 DATES *****
    August 9-12, 2012 – Wizard World Chicago Comic Con
    September 29-30, 2012 – Wizard World Ohio Comic Con
    October 26-28, 2012 – Wizard World Austin Comic Con
    November 30 – December 2, 2012 – Wizard World New Orleans Comic Con
    TBD, 2013 – Wizard World Toronto Comic Con
    May 30 – June 2, 2013 – Wizard World Philadelphia Comic Con

    Wizard World Austin Comic Con Adds to 2011 Celebrity Lineup with Biehn, Huffman, Etc.

    Alaina Huffman

    Press Release:

    Diora Baird, Julia Benson, Michael Biehn, Alaina Huffman, Kevin Sorbo Added To Wizard World Austin Comic Con Celebrity Lineup

    Standouts Join Hayden Panettiere, Adam Baldwin, Louis Gossett Jr., James Marsters, Dozens of Others at Austin Convention Center, November 11-13

    NEW YORK and AUSTIN, Texas, October 12, 2011 – Five popular celebrity guests have been added to the stellar Wizard World Austin Comic Con lineup as Diora Baird, Julia Benson, Michael Biehn, Alaina Huffman and Kevin Sorbo have committed to the event, set for the Austin Convention Center, November 11-13.  The five join standouts Hayden Panettiere, Adam Baldwin, ACADEMY AWARD WINNER Louis Gossett Jr., James Marsters, Juliet Landau, Charisma Carpenter and others at the next stop on North America’s largest pop-culture tour.

    Baird (THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE: THE BEGINNING, ACCEPTED), Benson (“SGU Stargate Universe,” ROAD TO VICTORY), Biehn (TERMINATOR, THE ABYSS), Huffman (“Smallville,” “SGU Stargate Universe) and Sorbo (ANDROMEDA, “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys”) further bolster the event’s robust celebrity roster.

    Wizard World Austin Comic Con, produced by Wizard World, Inc. (WIZD.PK) will bring together thousands of fans of all ages and dozens of celebrities and industry professionals to celebrate the best in pop-fi, pop culture, movies, graphic novels, comics, toys, video gaming, television, sci-fi, gaming, original art, collectibles, contests and more.

    The lineup of superstar artists at Wizard World Austin Comic Con is also impressive, including Jo Chen (“Superman,” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”), Matthew Sturges (“Jack of Fables,” “JSA All-Stars”), Greg Horn (“Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark,” “X-Force”), Mark Texeira (“Wolverine,” “Spider-Man”), Michael Golden (“Batman,” “Spider-Man”), Stéphane Roux (“Zatanna,” “Star Wars”), Marv Wolfman “DCU Online,” “Crisis on Infinite Earths”), Bill Sienkiewicz (“Elektra: Assassin,” “Moon Knight”) and dozens of others.

    Four of the five kids from the original WILLY WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY will also reunite at Austin Comic Con, commemorating the 40th anniversary of the film’s release.  Peter Ostrum (“Charlie Bucket”), Paris Themmen (“Mike Tee Vee”), Julie Dawn Cole (“Veruca Salt”) and Denise Nickerson (“Violet Beauregard”) will appear together for an extremely rare reunion.

    Other popular celebrity guests scheduled to be on hand in Austin include Chandler Riggs (“The Walking Dead,”), Barbara Nedeljáková (HOSTEL, SHANGHAI KNIGHTS),Electra and Elise Avellan (MACHETE, GRINDHOUSE), James Charles Leary (“Buffy: The Vampire Slayer) and Gena Lee Nolin (“Baywatch,” “Sheena”).

    STAR WARS fans can meet special guests Peter Mayhew (STAR WARS, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, RETURN OF THE JEDI), Daniel Logan (EPISODE II – ATTACK OF THE CLONES, “The Clone Wars”), Jake Lloyd (EPISODE I – THE PHANTOM MENACE), Adrienne Wilkinson (“The Clone Wars,” “The Force Unleashed”), Bonnie Piesse (EPISODE II – ATTACK OF THE CLONES, EPISODE III – REVENGE OF THE SITH) and Orli Shoshan (EPISODE II – ATTACK OF THE CLONES, EPISODE III – REVENGE OF THE SITH).

    The event also features an impressive collection of superstar artists, including Jo Chen (“Superman,” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”), Matthew Sturges (“Jack of Fables,” “JSA All-Stars”), Greg Horn (“Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark,” “X-Force”), Mark Texeira (“Wolverine,” “Spider-Man”), Michael Golden (“Batman,” “Spider-Man”), Stéphane Roux (“Zatanna,” “Star Wars”), Marv Wolfman (“DCU Online,” “Crisis on Infinite Earths”), Bill Sienkiewicz (“Elektra: Assassin,” “Moon Knight”) and dozens of others.

    Austin Comic Con is the ninth and final stop on Wizard World’s 2011 North American tour.  Hours are Friday, November 11, 4 – 7 p.m.; Saturday, November 12, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.; and Sunday, November 13, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.  Tickets are available in advance online at http://www.wizardworldcomiccon.com/austin.html at a savings over tickets purchased at the door.  Advance adult single-day tickets are priced at $25 ($35 on site); weekend all-session tickets are $45 ($55 on site), and tickets are free for children age 10 and under when accompanied by a paid adult (limit two children per adult).  VIP packages with special entry and exclusive items are also available on a limited basis.

    About Wizard World:
    Wizard World produces Comic Cons and pop culture conventions across North America that celebrate graphic novels, comic books, movies, TV shows, gaming, technology, toys and social networking. The events often feature celebrities from movies and TV, artists and writers, and events such as premieres, gaming tournaments, panels, and costume contests. Wizard World also produces Wizard World Digital, an online publication covering new and upcoming products and talents in the pop culture world, and is distributed on a weekly basis to online and iPad users worldwide.

    The full event schedule can be found at www.wizardworld.com.

           ***** SAVE THE 2011/12 DATES *****
    October 22-23 – Mid-Ohio Comic Con
    November 11-13 – Austin Comic Con
    January 28-29, 2012 – New Orleans Comic Con
    March 24-25, 2012 – Toronto Comic Con
    May 19-20, 2012 – Big Apple Comic Con
    June 1-3, 2012 – Philadelphia Comic Con
    August 9-12, 2012 – Chicago Comic Con

    CA – Hercules Signs

    Kevin Sorbo signs at Barnes & Noble on Tuesday October 25, 2011 at 7:00 PM!

    Author Event
    On television, Kevin Sorbo portrayed Hercules, an invincible demigod. True Strength is his story of transformation, persistence and hope in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles.

    Special Instructions
    Note: This is a wristbanded event. Please check back for complete guidelines.

    Barnes & Noble
    189 Grove Drive Suite K 30, Los Angeles, CA 90036
    323-525-0270

     

    NJ – Hercules Signs

    Kevin Sorbo signs at Bookends on Wednesday October 19, 2011 at 7:00 PM!

    Bookends
    211 E. Ridgewood Avenue, Ridgewood, NJ 07450

    NYC – Hercules Signs

    Comments Off

    Actor Kevin Sorbo joins us to discuss his book True Strength: My Journey From Hercules to Mere Mortal — and How Nearly Dying Saved My Life on Monday October 17, 2011 at 6:00 PM. Priority seating for those who buy a book. Please call the store for details.

    Barnes & Noble – Tribeca
    97 Warren Street, New York, NY 10007
    212-587-5389

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