Last Saturday night Gallery Nucleus opened a tribute exhibition of art to the Nickelodeon show Avatar: The Last Airbender and its spinoff The Legend of Korra. Hundreds of fans, many of whom cosplaying their favorite characters, waited for hours in eager anticipation with lines ultimately stretching around the building and down the block. Co-creators Bryan Konietzko and Michael DiMartino were on hand to sign autographs for a limited number of attendees. The artwork on display included both early development art and original pieces created by Avatar/Korra production artists and fans selected for inclusion.
Nucleus owner Ben Zhu, a self-avowed fan of Korra, said he got in touch with Nickelodeon around the middle of the third season to start planning the art show. “Little did we know that we would be the main event post show and no other fans events were in the works,” said Zhu in an email, “So in that sense, we got lucky.” Avatar/Korra co-creators Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dimartino remarked that they already knew of Nucleus’s reputation when they were approached because of the animation exhibitions it had hosted in the past. “It worked out nicely,” said Konietzko, “Lots of the crew from both shows are here so it’s kind of a family reunion.”
When asked about the future of 2D animation, Konietzko said the industry is currently in something of a Golden Age in television with more people going to art school specifically to study animation. Pointing to the artists represented in the exhibition, he and DiMartino agreed that they represent the future and will be the ones creating their own shows in the years to come.
During the opening only the first people in the gallery were given wristbands to get signatures from Konietzko and DiMartino. But the many attending artists from each show, including Joaquim Dos Santos, Angela Song Mueller, Colin Heck, Johane Matte, Giancarlo Volpe, Emily Tetri, Kenji Ono, Elsa Garagarza, Will Ruzicka, and more, mingled with fans and very graciously signed art books and prints. Also voice actors PJ Byrne (Bolin), Seychelle Gabriel (Asami),Dee Bradley Baker (Tarrlok and every single animal) and his daughter Cora (young Korra) also made appearances to meet fans and snap selfies. All told, a reported 1,500 people showed up to indulge in their fandom. Ben Zhu said, “This event broke attendance records for us and is the most attended show in our gallery’s history just above the Final Fantasy X/X2 game release event and the Harry Potter Tribute Exhibition. We knew the event was going to be big but anticipated maybe 2/3 the actual attendance.”
When asked if the story of Korra will continue in comic form as Avatar: The Last Airbender has, DiMartino remained cryptic but said if anything were to continue it would be there. He spoke well of the creative team behind the Dark Horse title, writer Gene Luen Yang and artist team Gurihiru, saying they are so talented they need very little direction.
The artwork for the exhibition will remain on display till March 22. The closing event on Saturday March 21st will feature a Q&A panel with Konietzko and DiMartino but is most likely to be restricted to 100-150 people. Fans are encouraged to follow Gallery Nucleus on their Facebook page and Twitter to get the latest news.
Comments Off on Legend of Korra Returns for Book 2: Spirits
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!
July 22, 2012 by Colin Solan
Filed under Animation, Anime, California, Comic Books, Comic-Con International, Con Reports and Photos, Movies, Other, Science Fiction and Fantasy, Television, Top Stories
One of the big draws of this year’s Comic Con International was The Legend of Korra, Nickelodeon’s highly anticipated sequel to the popular cartoon Avatar: The Last Airbender. With the first season recently concluded, Korra fans swarmed Comic-Con for panels and signings to grill the creators, artists, and voice over actors for hints to what may befall the new Avatar and her friends in the upcoming season. Series creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko hosted a panel on Friday to reveal some details and animatics from the new season, titled “Spirits.” They were joined by co-executive producer Joaquim Dos Santos, voice director Andrea Romano, and voice actors David Faustino (Mako), P.J. Byrne (Bolin), Seychelle Gabriel (Asami), and Korra herself, Janet Varney. Many fans (including your intrepid reporter) were unable to get into Ballroom 20 for the panel (possibly because of all the Browncoats squatting. for the Firefly panel immediately following) but never fret because naturally the panel has been posted to the internet.
A signing followed at the Nickelodeon booth, upon which convention staff required tickets to be handed out to cut down on lage, aisle-blocking crowds. Unfortunately this news came down first thing that morning meaning everyone at the panel missed out and many people who expected a first-come, first-serve signing. The giveaways posters featured either the cast of Legend of Korra or adult renditions of the original cast of Avatar: The Last Airbender.
The following day saw the Avatar Legacy Fan Panel which played to an overflowing audience and hosted special guests Bobby Rubio (Avatar: The Last Airbender, Pixar Studios, Alcatraz High), freelance concept artist DJ Welch (Dark Kenjie), Kevin Coppa (Puppet Benders), Gurihiru Studios artists Chifuyu Sasaki and Naoko Kawano, and voice actors Dante Basco (Prince Zuko, General Iroh II) and Mae Whitman (Katara). Festivities included a martial arts demonstration by series consultant Sifu Kisu, a costume contest, and a live reading of the Dark Horse comic The Promise featuring Basco and Whitman reprising their roles as Zuko and Katara respectively and a lucky fan very aptly steping into the role of Avatar Aang. Big thanks to organizer Avatar_Mom for putting the whole thing together.
After that was a signing at the Dark Horse Booth with DiMartino, Konietzko, Dos Santos, Gurihiru, and series director Ki Hyun Ryu. This one was ticketed as well but that fact had been well advertised beforehand. Even so the long line was packed and shuffled around by Dark Horse staffers. By all indications the Korra fanship is growing and Nickelodeon, Dark Horse, and Comic-Con itself would be well-advised to take that into consideration when assigning them panel space and accomodating signing lines.
July 6, 2012 by Colin Solan
Filed under Animation, Anime, California, Comic Books, Comic Strips, Comic-Con International, Convention News, Manga, Movies, Other, Science Fiction and Fantasy, Television, Top Stories, Webcomics
Dark Horse Comics announces their booth signings and panel schedule for San Diego Comic-Con 2012:
Dark Horse Comics Signings (Booth #2615)
Wednesday, July 11
5:30 p.m. — Dragon Age Signing with David Gaider
6:30 p.m. — Orchid Q&A and Signing with Tom Morello and Scott Hepburn *Ticketed by drawing
8:00 p.m. — Mass Effect Signing with John Jackson Miller
Thursday, July 12
11:00 a.m.— Mass Effect Signing with Sylvia Feketekuty, Chris Helper, and John Jackson Miller
1:00 p.m. — Angel & Faith Signing with Christos Gage
2:00 p.m. — Fatima Signing with Gilbert Hernandez
3:00 p.m. — Creator-Owned Signing with Eric Powell (The Goon), Francesco Francavilla (The Black Beetle), Matt Kindt (MIND MGMT), Tony Puryear and Erika Alexander (Concrete Park), and Sanford Greene (Rotten Apple)
4:00 p.m. — Tarzan 100th Anniversary Event with Thomas Yeates, Ron Ely, Joe Jusko, and Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc. President and Archivist
5:00-7:00 p.m. — Whedonverse Meet-up and Costume Contest with Shawna Trpcic, main costume designer on Joss Whedon’s Firefly, Angel, Doctor Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, Dollhouse, and Cabin in the Woods.
Friday, July 13
10:00 a.m. — Usagi Yojimbo Signing with Stan Sakai
See a preview of the upcoming Usagi Yojimbo: Way of the Ronin game for smartphones, tablets, and desktops.
11:00 a.m. — Star Wars Signing with Mike Richardson (Crimson Empire), Dave Dorman (Crimson Empire, Darth Maul), Randy Stradley and Doug Wheatley (Dark Times), Dave Wilkins (Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison), Dan Parsons (Dawn of the Jedi), John Jackson Miller (Knight Errant), Michael Atiyeh (colorist), Michael Heisler (letterer) and Tom Taylor (Darth Maul)
12:00 pm. — Valve Signing with Bill Fletcher (“Cave Johnson”), Laura Dubuk (“Caroline”), Andrew Wilson, Wade Schin, and Arsenio Navarro
12:00 p.m. — Axe Cop Signing with Ethan Nicolle
1:00 p.m. — Hellboy, B.P.R.D., and Baltimore Signing with Mike Mignola, Cameron Stewart, and Tyler Crook
1:00 p.m. — Age of Reptiles Signing with Ricardo Delgado
2:00 p.m. — Berserk Signing with Eiko Tanaka (Studio 4C CEO)
2:30 p.m. – Green River Killer Signing with Jeff Jensen
3:00 p.m. – Domo Signing with Domo creator Tsuneo Goda *Ticketed by drawing
3:00 p.m. – Dragon Age Signing with David Gaider
4:00 p.m. – Empowered Signing with Adam Warren
4:00 p.m. – De:Tales Signing with Gabriel Bá and Fábio Moon
5:00 p.m. — Creepy and Eerie Signing with Dan Braun, Angelo Torres, and Christopher A. Taylor
5:00 p.m. — Dark Horse Horror Signing with Steve Niles (Criminal Macabre), Eric Powell (The Goon), and Paul Tobin (Colder)
6:00 p.m. – TNT’s Falling Skies Signing with series stars Noah Wyle, Moon Bloodgood, Will Patton, Drew Roy, Connor Jessup, Colin Cunningham, Sarah Carter, executive producer Remi Aubuchon and more! *Ticketed by drawing
Saturday, July 14
10:00 a.m. — Darksiders Signing with David Slagle and Roger Robinson
10:00 a.m. — Aliens Colonial Marines Signing with Josh Williams
11:00 a.m. — Domo Signing with Domo creator Tsuneo Goda *Ticketed by drawing
12:00 p.m. — Joss Whedon Signing *Ticketed by drawing
1:00 p.m. — Whedonverse Signing with Andrew Chambliss, Georges Jeanty, Christos Gage, Jane Espenson, and Drew Greenberg
2:00 p.m – Avatar: The Last Airbender and Legend of Korra Signing with Michael DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, Joaquim Dos Santos, Ki Hyun Ryu, and Gurihiru Studios artists Chifuyu Sasaki and Naoko Kawano *Ticketed by drawing
3:00 p.m. – Valve Signing with Bill Fletcher (“Cave Johnson”), Laura Dubuk (“Caroline”), Andrew Wilson, and Wade Schin
3:00 p.m. — Concrete Park Signing with Tony Puryear and Erika Alexander
4:00 p.m. — Dark Matter Signing with Joseph Mallozzi
4:00 p.m. — Exile to Babylon Signing with Domagoj Mazuran, Matt Savelloni, and Helen Darras
5:00 p.m. – Mass Effect Signing with Sylvia Feketekuty, Chris Helper, and John Jackson Miller
6:00 p.m. — The Goon Signing with creator Eric Powell
Sunday, July 15
10:00 a.m. — Beanworld Signing with Larry Marder
11:00 a.m. — Mass Effect Signing with Sylvia Feketekuty, Chris Helper, and John Jackson Miller
12:00 p.m. — The Guild Signing with Felicia Day *Ticketed by drawing
1:00 p.m. — The Strain Signing with Guillermo del Toro *Ticketed by drawing
2:00 p.m. — Emily the Strange Signing with Rob Reger and Jessica Gruner
3:00 p.m. — Doug Sneyd Signing
*Events are subject to change. Some restrictions apply.
Dark Horse/Partner PANELS
Thursday, July 12
10:30-11:30 Books and Hollywood: Literary Franchises in Television and Film— Room 24ABC
Authors discuss their work transitioning across various mediums, from screenwriters to novelists turning popular books into hit TV series and Hollywood films. How does the creative process differ when writing a screenplay as compared to a novel? Authors describing the process of adapting novels for the big screen include Rebecca Serle (When You Were Mine), Margaret Stohl (co-author of the Beautiful Creatures series), Scott Speer (Immortal City), Tony DiTerlizzi (The Search for WondLa series), Ashley Edward Miller and Zack Stentz (Colin Fischer), Mike Richardson (president of Dark Horse), and Mark Frost (The Paladin Prophecy). Moderated by Geoff Boucher (Los Angeles Times).
11:00-12:00 Spotlight on Becky Cloonan— Room 32AB
Comic-Con special guest Becky Cloonan, one of the most versatile artists in comics today, talks to Jimmy Aquino (Comic News Insider podcast host) about her career in comics and illustration, collaborating with writers, artists, and musicians, and the dark secrets she learned through 15 years of self-publishing.
11:30-12:30 Spotlight on Geof Darrow— Room 8
Comic-Con special guest Geof Darrow is known for his wildly imaginative and intricately detailed artwork. Geof talks about his comics career, including his current work for Dark Horse, Shaolin Cowboy, in this special spotlight presentaton.
12:00-1:00 Comics Arts Conference Session #2: Once More, with Comics: How the Whedon Universes Continue in Comic Book Form— Room 26AB
Authors Katrina Hill (Action Movie Freak, GeekNation.com), Jennifer K. Stuller (Ink-StainedAmazon, GeekGirlCon), and Traci Cohen (CSU-Sacramento) examine how comic books and graphic novels provide a new form of media adaptation in which the graphic novel form furthers the canon or official continuity of television series as sequels to the original material. Creator Joss Whedon’s television universes enjoy new life in print (e.g. Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 9). Sharing their own thoughts on these Whedon comic book follow-ups are comic book writer/actress Amber Benson (Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Willow and Tara), editors Scott Allie (Dark House) and Mariah Huehner (IDW), and actors Clare Kramer (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Bring It On) and Tom Lenk (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Cabin in the Woods).
1:00-2:00 100th Anniversary of Tarzan and John Carter of Mars— Room 8
He wrestled lions, poachers and ran through fire barefoot without a stunt-double or CGI. Actor Ron Ely will discuss filming Tarzan in the jungles of Latin America with writer Mark Evanier and Burroughs illustrator Tom Yeates. Also featuring David Lemmo, co-author of the new book, Tarzan: His First 100 Years. How Ancient Literature Became Modern Mythology and Created an Ape-Man Mecca in Southern California, coming from Angel City Press in 2013. Plus a 100-years of Tarzan and John Carter slide show included.
1:00-2:00 Dark Horse: Powered by Creators- Room 23ABC
An In-Depth Look at the Best in Creator-Owned Comics— Just over 25 years ago, Dark Horse arrived with a different agenda than any other publisher in comics. The young company was founded on the belief that comics creators should have the option to retain the rights to their own work, and today it continues to be a highly fertile breeding ground for new characters and concepts. Self-publishing sensation Sam Humphries introduces Dark Horse publisher Mike Richardson, along with a cast of top talent from around the industry. Expect exclusive announcements, and much, much more!
2:00-3:00 The Sergio and Mark Show— Room 8
An annual Comic-Con tradition! The folks who give you Groo the Wanderer on occasion will tell what’s up with Groo and their other projects and will entertain you with glorious anecdotes and silly stories. Those folks are celebrated cartoonist Sergio Aragonés, his co-conspirator Mark Evanier, Usagi Yojimbo creator Stan Sakai, and the hardest-working man in comics, Tom Luth.
5:00-6:00 Uncle Creepy Presents— Room 9A stellar panel of ghoulish creators discuss Warren’s Creepy and Eerie, which have been relaunched at Dark Horse in hardcover archival editions, new comic books, and artist compilation formats. Discover all the exciting things coming up in the Creepy universe. Moderated by Overstreet’s J. C. Vaughn and featuring New Comic Company’s twin engines Dan Braun (Creepy) and Josh Braun (Button Man) and super special guest MAD and Creepy artist Angelo Torres (Mad), plus writer Christopher A. Taylor and some very special unannounced guests. Plus, there will be Creepy trivia questions with tons of giveaways, swag and prizes.
7:00-8:00 Indie Comics Marketing and PR 101— Room 8
Need tips on how to market your comic? Have questions about doing PR? This is the panel for you! Some of the best and brightest in comics today present a roundtable discussion, revealing all the secrets of doing marketing and PR for your comics. comiXology marketing and PR maven Chip Mosher is joined by Dark Horse’s director of PR Jeremy Atkins, Image Comics’ PR and marketing director Jennifer de Guzman, IDW Publishing’s VP of marketing Dirk Wood, Archaia’s Marketing Manager Mel Caylo and comics writer David Gallaher (Box 13, the Harvey Award-winning High Moon, and Marvel’s Darkstar and The Winter Guard) for a wide-ranging discussion you will not want to miss!
Friday, July 13
11:00-12:00 Mike Mignola and Friends— Room 4
As we watch the world collapse in the pages of B.P.R.D.-Hell on Earth and gear up for the most-anticipated series in Hellboy’s history later this year, this may be the most important panel in the history of one of modern comics’ most storied series. Join creator Mike Mignola, editor Scott Allie, Cameron Stewart, James Harren, B.P.R.D. artist Tyler Crook and others, for exclusive news and insight into why the world of Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. is truly “going to hell in 2012”!
11:15-12:15 Join the Revolution! Nickelodeon’s Legend of Korra— Ballroom 20
The cast and crew of Legend of Korra offer an in-depth discussion of Nickelodeon’s hottest new series. Executive producer and creator team Bryan Konietzko and Mike DiMartino (Avatar: The Last Airbender) are joined by co-executive producer Joaquim Dos Santos (Avatar: The Last Airbender) as they discuss the creative process that brought the first book in the Korra series to life. You’ll also get to hear from your favorite characters as talented voice actors Janet Varney (Korra), David Faustino (Mako), P. J. Byrne (Bolin) and Seychelle Gabriel (Asami) will be featured on the panel and renowned voice director Andrea Romano (Avatar: The Last Airbender) will direct the actors in a live performance from the series. And if you’re extra nice, Mike and Bryan may even drop a hint or two about Book 2. So don’t miss out! Moderated by Rich Magallanes, senior VP of current series for Nickelodeon.
12:00-1:00 Lenore Turns 20— Room 23ABC
Celebrations are in order! Lenore is 20 years old in 2012. Roman Dirge discusses his new Lenore collection Swirlies, upcoming comics, merchandise, and more. Join the artist/magician himself for this exclusive journey into the unique world of Roman Dirge, with a one-on-one interview with moderator Andrew Sumner plus a Q&A session.
12:30-1:30 Firefly 10-Year Anniversary Reunion— Ballroom 20
Calling all Browncoats to unite! It has been 10 years since the crew of the Serenity took flight in the now infamous show Firefly. Science Channel will reunite, for the first time ever, Captain Mal Reynolds and the crew from the ship. Join Joss Whedon, Nathan Fillion, Adam Baldwin, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk, Morena Baccarin, Sean Maher, Summer Glau, and many more for a trip down memory lane, some special surprises, and exclusive Science Channel giveaways. SHINY.
1:30-2:30 Comic Book Entrepreneurs— Room 8
Get a rare look behind the scenes as the comic book industry’s leading entrepreneurs share their secrets of building successful businesses around the love of comic books. Author and futurist Rob Salkowitz (Comic-Con and the Business of Pop Culture), CEO and co-founder David Steinberger of comiXology, Dark Horse Comics publisher Mike Richardson, Peter Levin of Nerdist Industries, and comics retailer Joe Field of Flying Colors Comics (who also founded Free Comic Book Day and helped run WonderCon for 15 years), offer a unique view of the business side of comics.
2:30-4:00 Eisner Spirit Award Video Viewing— Room 18
The Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award is the industry’s “Hall of Fame” for progressive retailers. Spirit Award facilitator and award recipient Joe Ferrara (Atlantis Fantasyworld, CA) presents the videos for this year’s award finalists, with discussion about each nominated retailer, the store’s display techniques, and other unique features every attending retailer can learn from. Hey, retailers: this is a great place for getting new ideas!
3:00-4:00 The Future of Star Wars Publishing: Dark Horse & Del Rey— Room 7AB Find out what’s coming up in the Expanded Universe of Star Wars publishing. Editors Randy Stradley and Dave Marshall from Dark Horse Comics discuss what’s next for Agent of the Empire, Dawn of the Jedi, Lost Tribe of the Sith, and Darth Maul, as well as reveal a new secret title that’s on the horizon. From Del Rey Books editors Frank Parisi and Erich Schoeneweiss, along with author Troy Denning (Apocalypse), look at new novels coming later this year from fan-favorite authors Timothy Zahn and Aaron Allston, as well as give a peek into 2013. Also on the panel is Jennifer Heddle, senior editor at LucasBooks. Moderated by author Pablo Hidalgo (Star Wars: The Essential Reader’s Companion).
3:00-4:00 Drawing on Your Nightmares: Horror in Comics— Room 23ABC Throughout comics’ storied history, horror has been an important part of the medium. In the fall of 2012, Dark Horse unveils a whole slate of new titles guaranteed to have you running for the covers. Dark Horse horror line editor Scott Allie is joined by actor-turned-comics writer Lance Henrikson and creators Eric Powell (The Goon), Steve Niles (30 Days of Night, Criminal Macabre), Tim Seeley (Hack/Slash), Paul Tobin (Colder), and others for an exciting look at this year’s most promising four-color thrills and chills!
3:30-4:30 The Art of Death and Darksiders II— Room 5AB
A lively demonstration on bringing 2D comic art to 3D graphics and back again-Joe Madureira (Vigil Games Darksiders creator; artist for Avenging Spider-Man, Ultimates, X-Men), and Han Randhawa (Vigil Games, Darksiders I and II creative director) use exclusive examples from the creative development process to show how they bring a unique comic inspired vision to 3D life in the new Darksiders II video game from THQ, where you become Death, the most feared rider from the legendary Four Horseman of the Apocalypse. In part two, representatives from Dark Horse Comics demonstrates how they took this highly stylized universe in 3D, converted it back to a 2D comic book series, and expanded on the mythos, revealing scenes and storyline threads that complement the events of the video game. Working closely with the Darksiders team at Vigil Games, Dark Horse Comics is creating an important component to complete Joe Mad’s original vision.
4:30-5:30 Falling Skies: The Battle Is Just Getting Started— Room 6BCF
Continuing the fight against alien invaders, TNT’s Falling Skies follows a band of human survivors on their quest to outrun and outwit the powerful alien force that invaded Earth. Join stars Noah Wyle (ER), Moon Bloodgood (Terminator Salvation), Will Patton (Armageddon), Drew Roy (Secretariat), Colin Cunningham (Living in Your Car), Sarah Carter (The Vow), and Connor Jessup (The Saddle Club), and show runner Remi Aubuchon (Caprica), with Q&A hosted by Wil Wheaton (Star Trek: The Next Generation, The Big Bang Theory). Watch never-before-seen clips and be treated to an in-depth discussion on Falling Skies season 2.
5:00-6:00 Breaking into Comics Right Now!— Room 9
If you’re an aspiring comic book creator, this is a panel you don’t want to miss! Some of comic book publishing’s top decision makers, including IDW chief creative officer Chris Ryall, BOOM! Studios editor-in-chief Matt Gagnon, Dark Horse managing editor Scott Allie, and Top Cow publisher Filip Sablik, give you up-to-date and practical advice on how to break into the comic book industry. Learn what you need to do to make your comic book dreams come true in a world where the Internet and social media have changed everything. This won’t be your grandfather’s “breaking into comics” panel.
5:30-6:30 Dark Horse: Joss Whedon— Ballroom 20
Long before directing the biggest superhero film in history, Joss Whedon rewarded fans the world over with some of the most compelling characters and plotlines in the history of comics, television, and movies. Here’s your chance to find out what he has in store for us next, and hear exclusive insight into Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the ever-expanding number of titles in Dark Horse’s line of Season 9 comics.
5:30-6:30 Berserk— Room 32AB
At long last, the dark fantasy epic Berserk, by creator Kentaro Muira, comes to the silver screen! Join Dark Horse Comics and VIZ Media in a rare interview with Eiko Tanaka, founder and CEO of Studio 4°C (Tekkonkinkreet, Animatrix, Batman). Find out what it really takes to transform this stark manga into an animated feature.
6:00-7:00 Are Digital Comics Expanding the Market?— Room 9
Digital comics are the hottest trend in publishing today, exploding onto the screens of iPads, tablets, and phones everywhere. How is digital distribution transforming the industry and the market? Is digital opening the medium to a vast new global audience, or is it the death knell of comics as we know them? Author and futurist Rob Salkowitz (Comic-Con and the Business of Pop Culture) leads a provocative, no-holds-barred discussion with the leaders of the digital comics revolution: comiXology co-founders David Steinberger and John D. Roberts, Dark Horse publisher Mike Richardson, and IDW publisher Ted Adams.
7:30-8:30 Making a Living in Manga— Room 8
Now that Japanese comics have been available in English for over 30 years, several generations of artists inspired by manga are trying to live the Bakuman dream of being full-time comics creators. But in the superhero-centric North American comics market, are they fighting the odds? Comics creators Adam Warren (Empowered), Becky Cloonan (Demo, Conan the Barbarian), Fred Gallagher (Megatokyo), and Audra Furuichi (Nemu-Nemu), along with industry pros Christopher Butcher (blogger, Comics212.net; director, Toronto Comic Arts Festival), JuYoun Lee (senior editor, Yen Press), Erik Ko (editor-in-chief, UDON Entertainment), and moderator Deb Aoki (Manga editor, About.com), explain the ins and outs and ups and downs of making a living as a manga creator in North America.
8:00-10:30 Syfy Presents the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards— Indigo Ballroom, Hilton San Diego Bayfront
The 24th annual Eisner Awards (the “Oscars” of the comics industry) honor comics creators and works in 28 categories. Presenters will include British talk show host/comics writer Jonathan Ross, actor Phil LaMarr (Futurama, Family Guy, Pee Wee’s Playhouse), and special guests Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard (The Walking Dead), Lynn Johnston (cartoonist, For Better or For Worse), Eric Powell (The Goon), Sergio Aragonés (cartoonist, MAD), Bill Morrison (creative director, Bongo Comics), Michael Uslan (movie producer, Batman films), plus some special surprises! Other prestigious awards to be given out include the Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award, the Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award, the Bill Finger Award for Excellence in Comics Writing, and the Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award.
Saturday, July 14
10:30-11:30 Dark Horse: Bioware— Room 24ABC
Dark Horse and Bioware have come together once again to provide fans with exclusive news on Dragon Age, and the ever-expanding Mass Effect universe. Join Dark Horse director of public relations Jeremy Atkins and editor Dave Marshall, along with Dragon Age writers David Gaider and Sylvia Feketekuty, BioWare art director Derek Watts, moderator “Evil Chris” Priestly, and a cast of other celebrity geeks and surprise guests for an exciting look into the Dark Horse/BioWare universe. Attendees can be sure to expect a spirited discussion on the ongoing link between comics and gaming, with exclusive news and more!
11:00-12:00 Avatar the Last Airbender: Beginning and Beyond— Room 28E
For over 5 years, the organizers of this fan panel have been bringing together both fans and professionals. Moderated by Avatar_Mom, this year’s panel will include Bobby Rubio (Avatar the Last Airbender, Pixar, Alcatraz High), freelance concept artist DJ Welch (Dark Kenjie), Kevin Coppa (Puppet Benders), and actor/voice actor Dante Basco (Avatar the Last Airbender), and a few more surprise guests. If that isn’t enough, there will be a cosplay contest to showcase the fandom’s talented “fabric benders.”
11:00-12:00 Geek & Sundry— Indigo Ballroom, Hilton San Diego Bayfront
Felicia Day (The Guild, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog), Wil Wheaton (Big Bang Theory, Eureka), director Daniel Strange (Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis), and the cast of The Guild — Vince Caso, Jeff Lewis, Amy Okuda, Sandeep Parkih, and Robin Thorsen — make some big announcements and offer an exclusive sneak peek at what’s to come. Moderated by Kim Evey (producer, Geek & Sundry).
12:00-1:00 Spotlight on Gary Gianni— Room 4
Comic-Con special guest Gary Gianni discusses his work illustrating one of Ray Bradbury’s last published books, painting the Game of Thrones 2014 calendar, and the future of illustrated storytelling in the digital realm.
2:00-3:00 Will Eisner and the Graphic Novel— Room 23ABC
Moderator Paul Levitz (writer, 75 Years of DC Comics, Legion of Super-Heroes, former Eisner publisher), Klaus Janson (artist/inker, Daredevil, The Dark Knight Return, comics educator, SVA), Denis Kitchen (artist, author, publisher; Eisner’s agent and longtime friend), Charles Kochman (editorial director, Abrams ComicArts), and Diana Schutz (comics educator; executive editor, Dark Horse Comics; Eisner’s editor) explore the pivotal role Will Eisner’s evangelism of the comics artform plays in the evolution of the American graphic novel, followed by a short Q&A period.
5:00-6:00 Mass Effect: Past, Present, and Future— Room 25ABC
Developers from Mass Effect offer an exciting look at the evolution of the Mass Effect franchise. Mike Gamble (producer), Corey Gaspur (senior combat designer), Parrish Ley (lead cinematic animator), Sylvia Feketekuty (writer), Chris Helper (writer), Jessica Merizan (community manager) and Chris Priestly (community specialist) discuss the history of the series, beloved characters, multiplayer gaming and hints at upcoming DLC. Don’t forget to bring your emergency induction port!
8:00-9:00 Occupy Comics: Activism, Kickstarter, and Comics— Room 4
Get the story behind the historic Occupy Comics project that inspired dozens of top comics pros to take a stand, bummed out Frank Miller, and brought Alan Moore and David Lloyd back together in the same book for the first time since the Occupy-inspiring V for Vendetta. With a star-studded roster featuring Charlie Adlard (The Walking Dead), Art Spiegelman (Maus), Ben Templesmith (30 Days of Night), and many more, Occupy Comics raised nearly three times its Kickstarter fundraising goal, with all revenue beyond hard costs being donated to Occupy protesters. Organizational spearhead Matt Pizzolo (Godkiller, president Halo-8) will be joined by contributors Steve Niles (30 Days of Night), Tyler Crook (Petrograd, B.P.R.D.), Brea Grant and Zane Grant (We Will Bury You, Suicide Girls), Joshua Dysart (Swamp Thing, The Unknown Soldier), Zoetica Ebb (Biorequiem), Mark L. Miller (The Jungle Book), and others special guests to discuss counterculture art, creating activist comics without being annoying, and tips on how to fundraise for your own comics.
Sunday, July 15
10:00-11:00 Emily the Strange— Room 23ABC
Be a part of the Emily the Strange panel experience, where you have the chance to prove your knowledge of Strange and win prizes, learn what’s new in Emily’s oddball universe (including a sneak peek at the new Emily and the Strangers comic book series), and Q&A with Emily’s creator Rob Reger and writer Jessica Gruner. Did we mention you will get some cool stuff just for showing up and being Strange?
11:30-12:30 Spotlight on Tom Yeates— Room 8
Seasoned comics, fantasy, and book illustrator and Comic-Con special guest Tom Yeates will discuss his 35-year career, from attending the first year of Joe Kubert’s school with Steve Bissette and Rick Veitch to Swamp Thing, Tarzan, Zorro, and Prince Valiant. Writer, journalist, editor, and Thomas’s longtime friend Steven Ringgenberg will moderate. A slide show of Yeates’s art career and influences will be included.
12:45-1:45 CBLDF Rock Art Jam— Room 5AB
Explore the creative process of top cartoonists who’ve made their mark on the worlds of comics and music! Fábio Moon, Gabriel Bá, and Nate Powell talk about the influence of music in their work and draw live art showcasing their love of sound and vision! Get a chance to watch live art made before your eyes, and bid to win the pieces made here to benefit the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund!
2:15-3:15 Buffy Turns 20: Celebrating 20 Years of Buffy the Vampire Slayer— Room 6BCF
Once upon a time, Buffy Summers became the Slayer, the Chosen One who proved a young heroine could battle the forces of darkness instead of playing damsel in distress. Stars from the hit TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Nicholas Brendon, Clare Kramer) join forces with Dark Horse editor Scott Allie, writer/producer Jane Espenson, illustrator Georges Jentry, and the original Buffy herself (Kristy Swanson, star of the 1992 motion picture), not to mention a surprise guest or two, to celebrate 20 years of slayage.
3:00-4:00 Axe Cop— Room 6DE
Ethan Nicolle (Bearmageddon, Chumble Spuzz) discusses the growing world of Axe Cop, including the new President of the World miniseries from Dark Horse comics and his involvement the TV show in production at FOX. With a possible appearance in person or digitally from his brother/co-creator Malachai Nicolle plus possible surprise guests.
Legend of Korra and Avatar: The Last Airbender co-creator Bryan Konietzko announced exciting news on his tumblr about the panel he, fellow co-creator Michael Dante DiMartino, and several cast and crew members will host at Comic Con this year:
Hello, everyone! I wish I had some time to draw something new for the blog, but I’ve been buried in all sorts of work. So in an effort to post something related to the Book 1 finale this Saturday, here is the rough concept for the press art I posted last week. It might be interesting to those of you who like to see this sort of process work.
I have some more specifics on our San Diego Comic Con activities to share:
WHAT: The Legend of Korra Comic-Con Panel WHEN: Friday, July 13 from 11:15a – 12:15p WHERE: Ballroom 20 WHO: Co-creators and executive producers Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, Joaquim Dos Santos (co-executive producer), Janet Varney (Korra), David Faustino (Mako), P.J. Byrne (Bolin), Seychelle Gabriel (Asami), and Andrea Romano (voice director). The panel will include an in-depth discussion of Book 1 and a live performance by the voice actors.
WHAT: The Legend of Korra Comic-Con Signing WHEN: Friday, July 13 beginning at 2:30 p.m. WHERE: Nickelodeon booth
I’ve been told that Ballroom 20 holds 4300 people, so just get 4300 people to hold your places in the Game of Thrones line for Hall H, and pop over to Ballroom 20 for a spell. Among other things, Andrea is going to lead the actors in a live table read of some key scenes from Book 1. We’ve never done that sort of thing at a panel, so it should be really fun.
***Remember: The actors are not the characters, so be nice to David. He isn’t Mako. He just plays one on TV.