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San Diego Comic-Con 2010 – Sunday Programming Preview

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San Diego Comic-Con International is next week, July 22-25.

Sunday programming at the convention is traditionally fairly thin. I usually plan four or five panels for the day and, by the second or third, am so sore and tired that I end up walking the show floor instead.

Sunday, July 25
10:00-11:00 Smallville Screening and Q&A— Ballroom 20 – this should be something of a farewell lovefest between the showrunners and the Comic-Con crowd.

10:30-11:30 ABC’s Castle: Nathan Fillion & Stana Katic— Room 6BCF

11:15-12:30 Cartoon Voices II— Room 6A – I love this panel every year. Mark Evanier, animation director and con bedrock, does an amazing job both putting together and moderating what is a hybrid between a panel about voice acting, and a panel demonstrating how it is done. In past years, he’s brought scripts from old radio plays and runs the actors through their paces. I almost hate to highlight this panel since it’s a bit of a hidden gem, but it’s well worth your time to catch this one.

12:30-1:15 American Dad— Ballroom 20 – Somebody please take a moment and count the number of Comic-Con panels Seth MacFarlane appears in during this convention. When does the guy have time to even take a potty break?

1:00-2:00 Unnatural History Episode Screening and Q&A— Room 6BCF

1:30-2:30 Glee— Ballroom 20 – with most of the cast and the creative team in attendance, this panel is sure to be popular. Going early and getting a seat at the panel before is highly recommended.

2:00-3:00 Business of Cartoon Voices— Room 25ABC – although I’ll probably be at Glee, I am tempted to hit this panel instead. Mark Evanier’s last panel of this year’s convention sounds quite a lot like the way he’s about 10 minutes of the Cartoon Voices panel in the past: a how-to guide for those interested in getting into the business. Inevitably this will turn into war stories from the guests, which can’t help but be a little slice of awesome.

2:45-3:45 FX: Sons of Anarchy and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia— Ballroom 20 – having just blasted through the first disc of the Sons of Anarchy’s first season and being a long-standing fan of Sunny, this is going to be a fun one. I hope there’s no violence between the two casts. If there is, smart money is on the wild card.

San Diego Comic-Con 2010 – Saturday Programming Preview

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San Diego Comic-Con International is next week, July 22-25.

One last shameless beg: I’m hoping to do some live blogging of the panels I attend, but need a netbook in order to pull it off. If you have a hookup, please drop me a line. Time is running out!

I don’t know who I’m kidding when it comes to Saturday: though I have some panels I’d like to see that are scattered around, I’m going to be camped in Hall H all day. The lineup looks solid. In fact, there’s only a hole or two (I’m looking at you, Resident Evil:Afterlife). Count this as my official vote for the SDCC programming folks to act on the perpetual rumor that they’re going to limit Hall H to a couple of days every year. While we’re voting, please make one on Thursday, when crowds are more manageable. And get me a free pony while you’re at it.

Sometime between now and next Wednesday, I’ll sit down and figure out exactly what I’ll be attending. Here are the highlights:

Saturday, July 24 (Happy Pioneer Day!)

10:00-11:00 Mad about MAD!— Room 7AB

11:15-12:15 The Event: World-Premiere Pilot Screening and Q&A with Cast and Producers— this has quite a large chunk of the cast expected to be there.

11:15-12:15 Spotlight on Gerard Way— Room 6DE – Lead singer of My Chemical Romance. Squee, I say.

11:45-1:15 Warner Bros.: Green Lantern, Sucker Punch, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows— Hall H – we couldn’t have gotten rid of half of yesterday’s Hall H programming and let Green Lantern and Harry Potter each have their own panel?

12:00-1:00 The Venture Bros.— Indigo Ballroom, San Diego Hilton Bayfront

12:30-1:45 Quick Draw!— Room 6BCF

1:30-2:15 The Simpsons— Ballroom 20

1:30-2:30 Behind the Scenes with Sid & Marty Krofft: A Look at the Past, Present and Future— Room 24ABC

1:30-2:30 Overture: Let Me In— Hall H

1:45-3:15 Cartoon Voices I— Room 6BCF – the first of Mark Evanier‘s two-part animation voices extravaganza during the convention. If you aren’t a Hall H type and enjoy animation at all, this is where you should be. Mark does a great job of keeping things running, and gathers together the most talented group of actors whose names you likely don’t recognize. Not only are they gathered up, but Mark puts them through their paces. I can’t recommend this panel highly enough. It’s companion panel is on Sunday morning and, since I’ll be holding down the fort in Hall H on Saturday, I’ll be going to the sequel.

2:00-3:00 The Guild— Indigo Ballroom, San Diego Hilton Bayfront

2:30-3:30 Partners in Image Comics— Robert Kirkman and Todd McFarlane in the same panel. I’m really sorry to miss this one.

3:30-5:00 Warehouse 13 and Eureka— Room 6BCF

4:00-4:45 Screen Gems: Resident Evil: Afterlife— Hall H – I swear this is a retread of last year’s panel. And last year, there was 3D content. It’s hard to imagine what exactly needs to be said a full year later, since there was a decent amount of footage last time, if memory serves.

4:30-5:30 Spotlight on J. Michael Straczynski— Room 6A – even though the project has passed into the hands of a new writer, I’d still like to hear what JMS has to say about the state of World War Z. He’s always entertaining.

4:30-5:30 Disney Epic Mickey— Room 9

4:45-5:45 Universal: Paul and Cowboys & Aliens— Hall H

5:00-6:00 G4: Attack of the Show— Indigo Ballroom, San Diego Hilton Bayfront

5:30-6:30 Why So Critical? Celebrating 25 Years of Film Threat— Room 24ABC

5:30-6:30 Avatar Press and Max Brooks— Room 26AB

6:00-7:00 Marvel Studios: Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger— Hall H – Whedon’s in town for another panel, so one wonders if we might get some news on The Avengers.

7:15-8:15 MythBusters— Room 6BCF

7:15-8:45 Kevin Smith— Hall H – casting news for his upcoming political horror movie Red State have been promised.

7:30-8:30 World Premiere of Legend of Neil, Season 3— Room 7AB

8:00-9:00 Troma Troma Troma— Room 8

8:30-10:30 With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story— Room 6BCF

8:30-9:30 World Premiere of The House That Drips Blood on Alex: An Evening With Tommy Wiseau— Room 7AB

10:00-12:00 Kevin Smith presents Cop Out in “Maximum Comedy Mode”— Indigo Ballroom, San Diego Hilton Bayfront – say what you will about Mssr. Smith, he does have a good handle on what a live crowd wants, and probably realizes that it isn’t to merely watch a DVD of his last movie with him. I suspect there will be surprises here.

San Diego Comic-Con 2010 – Friday Programming Preview

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July 22 through 25 marks 41st year of the San Diego Comic-Con International, the world’s most famous popular culture convention. It’ll be my seventh year as an attendee.

If I can pull together the hardware I need, I’m hoping to post my instant impressions of each panel I attend as they happen. If you happen to have an awesome contact who can help out, please drop me a line

The panels for this year were released last week. Here’s my list of Friday’s panels that appeal. The best news for me is that the panels in Hall H are almost uniformly terrible, meaning that I will escape the gravity of that place for the first time in quite a while, if only for a day. This also means that I get to avoid most of the 3D hype, as the programming gurus appear to have decided that Friday, in addition to being Star Wars Day, is also unofficially 3D Day. On the down side, it means I will miss Guillermo del Toro, who is always highly entertaining.

Sometime between now and next Wednesday, I’ll sit down and figure out exactly what I’ll be attending.

Friday, July 23

10:00-11:00 Comedy Central: Ugly Americans— Room 25ABC

10:30-11:30 Summit Entertainment: Drive Angry 3D— Hall H

11:00-11:45 Dimension Films: Piranha 3D— Hall H

11:30-12:30 AMC’s The Walking Dead— Room 6BCF – I am really excited for this panel. I love the Kirkman graphic novel it’s based on, and think Darabont can do almost no wrong. My biggest concern about the show is that they’re going to have to gut it to get it on AMC. I hope not.

11:30-12:30 Caprica— Ballroom 20

12:00-1:00 Skyline— Hall H

1:00-2:00 Bloom County’s Berkeley Breathed: The Secret Sex Tapes— Room 6A – from what I understand, Breathed rarely does public appearances. It’ll be a tight transition between Walking Dead to here, and I suspect the line will be prohibitively long for what is a really small room, so we shall see.

1:00-2:00 Star Wars Day: Beyond Solo: Crafting the Multiplayer Story in Star Wars: The Old Republic— Room 7AB

1:00-2:00 Super— Hall H

2:00-3:00 Yo Gabba Gabba! -Room 8

2:15-3:45 Miramax Films: Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark— Hall H – It’s possible I may try to sneak back into Hall H for this and the Green Hornet panel. del Toro’s been reliably entertaining in past panels, and is rumored to be ready to announce his next movie here. Fingers crossed for Lovecraft.

4:00-5:00 Entertainment Weekly: Girls Who Kick Ass: A New Generation of Heroines—Ballroom 20

4:00-6:00 Sony Pictures Entertainment: The Other Guys, The Green Hornet, and Priest — Hall H

4:30-5:30 Adult Swim Panel Featuring Robot Chicken, Venture Bros, and Metalocalypse—Room 6BCF – on the other hand, if I skip Hall H, I’ll get to finally see the Adult Swim panel after many years of wanting to get to it.

4:30-5:30 Fallout: Game Writing in Evolving Franchises— Room 9

5:00-6:00 Spotlight on Drew Struzan— Room 7AB

5:00-6:00 Girls Gone Genre: Movies, TV, Comics, Web— Room 24ABC

5:15-6:15 True Blood Panel and Q&A session— Ballroom 20

5:30-6:30 Shout! Factory: Roger Corman: King of the Independents— Room 25ABC

6:30-7:30 TV Guide Magazine: The 2010 Hot List— Ballroom 20

7:00-8:00 RiffTrax Live— Room 6DE

8:00-10:00 World Premiere: Batman: Under the Red Hood— Ballroom 20

8:15-9:15 Marvel: Iron Man Anime— Room 6DE

9:00-10:00 Worst Cartoons Ever— Room 6BCF – This one’s a yearly tradition and always a lot of fun. The last few years I’ve been so bushed by Friday night that I’ve had to go to the panel, grab a copy of the DVD that Jerry Beck, noted animation historian, puts together of his program, and go back and sleep, but I won’t have as early a morning this time, so this may happen.

9:30-10:30 The Blood Factory— Room 5AB

10:00-12:00 Spike & Mike’s Festival of Animation: Sick and Twisted— Room 6BCF

San Diego Comic-Con 2010 – Thursday Programming Preview

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July 22 through 25 marks 41st year of the San Diego Comic-Con International, the world’s most famous popular culture convention. It’ll be my seventh year as an attendee.

My first year at Comic-Con coincided with the first year that programming was held in Hall H, the frigid, 6500-seat theatre at the end of the San Diego Convention Center where most of the panels about upcoming movies are held. Because of the size of the venue, deciding to join the masses in Hall H is basically a day-long sentence: in order to get a decent seat on the hall, you really do need to show up hours early and sit in line. Leaving pretty much guarantees your being in the back, watching the proceedings on a screen and, if there is a popular panel, likely means you can’t get back in at all.

Provided I can pull together the hardware I need, I’m hoping to post my instant impressions of each panel I attend as they happen.

The panels for this year were released last week. Here’s my list of panels that look neat. Sometime between now and next Wednesday, I’ll sit down and figure out exactly what I’ll be attending.

Thursday, July 22

10:00-11:00 DreamWorks Animation: Megamind – Hall H – This is a really early start on Thursday for Hall H. The first panel on Saturday won’t start until 11:45, presumably to let the dignitaries in town sleep in after a Friday night debauch.

10:30-11:30 Danny Elfman— Room 6BCF

10:30-11:30 TheOneRing.net Talks The Hobbit movies— Room 7AB – Since Guillermo del Toro left the project, I’d be interested to hear what scoops these guys have on a start date. If anybody will have one, it’s likely the TORN folks.

11:00-12:00 That Chris Gore Show— Room 5AB

11:15-12:45 Walt Disney Pictures: TRON: Legacy— Hall H – After an impressive viral campaign which kicked off at last year’s Comic-Con, I’m really excited to finally see the goods in this panel.

12:00-1:00 X-Play LIVE: A Show on Television— Room 5AB

12:30-1:30 Batman: The Widening Gyre— Room 4 – Kevin Smith, who’s been writing the scripts for this series, is expected to attend this one, which will be interesting since the room they’ve set it up in is tiny. He’s appearing a few other times during the weekend.

1:00-2:00 Digital Bits: Blu-ray Producers 2010— Room 32AB – I’ve attending this panel almost every year. Bill Hunt and his crew always have a great lineup for DVD producers. At the top of the bill is always Charlie de Lauzirika who, if you like film enough to have favorite DVDs, was likely the mastermind behind most of them.

1:00-2:00 Sony Pictures Entertainment: Battle: Los Angeles and Salt— Hall H

2:15-3:15 Summit Entertainment: RED— Hall H – One of the best pieces of news in this year’s programming? No Twilight panels or the scary women that accompany them. Summit makes another appearance later in the convention in Hall H.

3:00-4:00 Masters of the Web— Room 32AB – I’m tempted by this panel not only to see why they’ve pressed Roberto Orci into service as the moderator, but also because they’re giving away a year’s worth of movies at AMC theatres.

3:30-4:30 Entertainment Weekly: The Visionaries— Hall H – Hey, look at that: one of my least favorite directors that I’m supposed to really love, and Joss Whedon, who is rather hit and miss for me as well, but is a pretty impressive raconteur. Were it not for The Expendables panel afterward, I might duck out.

4:45-5:45 Lionsgate: The Expendables— Hall H – We’ll see if Lionsgate can pull off a second coup after last year’s buzz-drenched Kick-Ass panel.

5:00-6:00 Adult Swim: Childrens’ Hospital— Room 25ABC

6:00-7:00 Showtime’s Dexter— Ballroom 20

6:00-7:00 Universal: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World— Hall H – This is one of my two or three most anticipated panels of the convention. I love the trailer, and also have an unnatural affinity for Edgar Wright’s work. I was first introduced to he and Simon Pegg my first year at Comic-Con, where I got to attend a screening of Shaun of the Dead, congratulate them both on the way out the door, and then enjoy a panel the next day where they screened 15 minutes of Spaced highlights.

7:30-8:30 Penn + Teller: 35 Years of Magic & BS!— San Diego Hilton Bayfront

8:15-9:15 The Sushi Typhoon: The Best in Japanese Genre Movies— Room 5AB

8:15-11:15 Superhero Kung Fu Extravaganza— Room 6BCF – Ric Meyers is always entertaining and insightful in his yearly showcase of mostly unseen martials arts films.

9:30-11:45 Night of the Living Dead: Reanimated Screening and Panel Discussion— Room 5AB

Comic-Con International

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