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Comic Con: Right Bastard on STAR WARS, ANIMATRIX, 'xXx', FUTURAMA, ECKS VS SEVER, TOOTH FAIRY, X2, COMIC BOOK T.M. +

Harry here with another wonderful Comic Con wrap up, this one from Right Bastard! He covers more uncovered material yet! So let's hop to it shall we? Here ya go...

Random Comic-Con notes in no particular order.

Hidey-Ho!

Right Bastard Here with another rare appearance.

To start off, I'll go over the Star Wars Panel. Last year I sent you scathing reaction to the P.O.S. Phantom Menace Panel. Lucasfilm got a bit of my faith back this year with the Clones. A damn fine film, that. The Lucasfilm rep announced that the DVD for Ep 2 would out in only 2 months with deleted scenes, commentary, etc. Then he showed one of the scenes, which portrayed OB1 analyzing the dart before he went to visit his buddy at the diner. It had pretty neat FX, but it wasn't necessary. Not much more than: A robot grabs the dart, analyzes it, says "I don't know what this is", and gives it back (only it looks really neat). They cut it because the film was running long, and it was a bit redundant. Even though I liked clones, the panel annoyed me a little. I got the same feeling as last year, that I was being marketed to. He showed several clips telling us how much the world loves Star Wars, and a decent (but not complete) self deprecating comedy clip. Of course I know that most of the talent at the con are, indeed, there to pimp their wares; but many of them do it with an excitement of simply wanting to share the work they're proud of with the fans. Rather than simply trying to drain our wallets...which is the vibe I got from Lucas rep again this year. Unctuous character. As I said, Ep 2 was pretty damn good, so they have me for one more.

To continue with the Star Wars theme, there's "Comic Book: The Movie". This is the working title for Mark Hamill's new movie (unless that was a joke that I didn't catch, a lot were flying that night). This was an incredibly fun evening, with a wonderful energy in the room There was a true spark there. This movie is Mark's love letter to Comic Books and Comic Culture. As he said several times that night "I am one of you. Before I ever was in sci-fi films...I was...and still am one of you." He was keeping the story fairly secret. The film started out as a mockumentory, but Mark stated very emphatically that he did not was to make a "Trekkies" style exploitation of the fans, because he is a fan. I was getting a Christopher Guest vibe from what Mark was trying to do, and I hope he pulls it off. I really do, because he had a passion for this project. Anyway, Mark said that more than anything else, he wanted to film the finale to his movie at the Comic Con. So, all of us in the audience became extra's in the film. I won't go into the details from the scene or the movie, for two reasons. First, I'll be typing here all night. Second, he didn't really want to reveal much about the film. Basically, a classic golden age comic character is announced that it's being re-made for a new era. Mark's character (a comic loving director) bursts in to put a stop to this. I hope that's not too spoilerific...I tried to keep it general.

I forgot to mention the best part of that evening. It was an animation fan's wet dream. Mark didn't want us to get bored while they set up shots, so we were entertained by Gary Owens (Laugh-In, Roger Ramjet, O.G. Space Ghost, Blue Falcon, and about 1,000,000 other voices), Billy West (Stimpy, Futurama's Fry & Zap Branegan, Howard Stern), Jess Harnell (Wakko on animaniacs), Rob Paulsen (Yakko, Pinkey), Maurice LaMarche (The Brain), Tom Kinny (Spongebob, Mr.Show), Jim Cummings (+1988 Winnie The Pooh, Tigger, and Taz), as well as Taylor Donahue (I forgot what he did...VH1 or something). This group of incredible voice talent had a Q&A and kept the audience in stitches the entire shoot. They were very friendly and appreciative people, and happy to be able to see the audience's faces...and have the audience see their faces. Voice actors are truly the using talent of the entertainment industry.

It was a much better night than the previous evening. I had a choice to get passes and watch a preview of either Shaolin Soccer, xXx, or Bubba Hotep. I, of course, went with the Bruce Campbell film directed by the fellow who directed Phantasm. The beginning of the movie was great and the audience was excited, but as the movie dragged on, the audience got quieter and quieter. I can't put my finger on it, but something was missing from that film. I really enjoyed the Elvis asides and flashbacks at the beginning of the movie, but they began to distract towards the end and slow the film down. The soundtrack was extremely repetitive. I really wanted to like this movie. I didn't hate it, but I was disappointed that I didn't love it. The environment was a little off, as well. They let us in late, and the ventilation was terrible. On top of that, the guy next to me had such rank B.O. that I almost walked out of the last 30 minutes. When I mentioned this to my friend as we left, she told me that 90% of the audience had B.O., and she was suffering as well. I brought a friend who said "who?" when I mentioned Bruce Campbell and "what?" when I mentioned Phantasm. She was slightly less amused by the movie than I was.

Short wrap up:

Bulletproof Monk

: This movie looks like a great ride. I've never read the comic, but the preview brought memories of "Remo Williams" to me while watching the preview. I can't wait to watch this film, and I hope it's as good or better than my expectations. Promoting it at the Con were Jamie King and Sean William Scott. Both were fantastic panelist. James is beautiful in person; and Sean may play the Jock/Asshole in many of his movies, but was one of the most grounded and nicest actor I've seen in my 10 years of going to the Con.

Hulk

: Ang Lee showed up at the con to promote the film. We've all seen that wonderful preview before Spiderman. He showed several stills from the set, but no sight of the big green guy yet. They've been working on the film over a year, and it will be another year until the effects and CG will be finished. Ang said that he had to pay his dues (certainly that is what Sense and Sensibility was!) before he was able to have the clout to do what he wanted (Crouching Tiger and The Hulk.). He told a story of how when he boy was growing up, he used to have to hide his comics and read them in secret. I'm telling you this is a work of passion. I think Hulk is in safe hands.

Animatrix

: Oh My Fucking God! The Wachowski Brothers hiring animators from America, Japan, and Korea to produce (I think it was) 12 animated short stories based on supporting characters from the future Matrix movie. This will be a supplemental, much like the web site was for the first film. They showed a clip and I CAN'T WAIT TO SEE THIS. Even if the next two movies suck (which I doubt they will), this animation will be woth it! Each story takes on a different animation style (traditional, CG, anime/manga, and various mixtures within). Once again...WOW!

Futurama

: Contrary to popular rumor (and in spite of Fox's hatred for it) Matt says one more season is in the can. They'll go as long as they can, and American DVD's with commentary are in the future. Panel: Matt Groening, David X. Cohen, Billy West, Phil LaMarr, John DiMaggio, and several writers. I left early due to annoying nit picky repetitive fan boy questions (I can only take so much..ATTENTION FANBOYS: Con etiquette: 1) don't repeat the same question that was asked two people ago, 2) don't word your question in a way that insults the rich/famous/busy/kind guest who was nice enough to actually come to a stupid comic con when they have several thousand better things they could be doing EVEN if you think their movie sucks, 3) don't pester the guest for an autograph in a room or 2000+ people, 4) don't ask a question that is either a) a spoiler for the crowed or b) asks the film makers to give away a spoiler...you know they's not going to tell you and maybe the rest of us don't want to know...asshole, and 5) shower and use deodorant...follow these rules and you'll make more friends...sorry, I digress)

Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever

: Panel: Lucy Lui, Ray Parks, and Kaos. We saw a brief clip from this film staring Lucy and Antonio Bandares. Lucy plays an Assassin who was raised specifically to be a killing machine. She's on a personal mission after a bad guy, and Antonio is a spy who has to protect the bad guy. Violence ensues. Might be a fun pop corn movie. In the panel Ray (who will not be in X-Men:2) was asked meek questions about Darth Maul and Toad; and Lucy made some wonderful statements about the difficulty of being an Asian (women) in the film industry.

Tooth Fairy

: Panel: Emma Caulfield (Anya on Buffy) and the director. This film is trying for an M.Night atmosphere, and looks interesting. Personally, I think the title will keep people away. It’s a stupid name for a movie. Anyway, Emma's got at least one more season on Buffy. The panel was kind of boring so I went to get a hot dog.

xXx

: I went to this panel for only one reason. Asia Argento. I was one of the three people in the crowd who knew who she was. She talked about growing up in her dad's house being more normal than people think. She watched his movies at the age of five. She will not collaborate with Dario any time soon because she's trying really hard to make a big break into U.S. films (and xXx may be the movie that pushes her over the top). She didn't really talk about the movie much, and only showed the same preview that we've all seen.

Terminator 3

: I was shocked to see Arnold Schwarzenegger show up to the con. A crowd of probably well over 3000 people (I think the new hall holds more than 4000) gave him a standing ovation. Unfortunately, thanks to Will Sasso's brilliant MadTV portrayal, it was hard for me to see Arnold without laughing. The showed us a very rough effect-less T3 cut. Quint went over this already. Arnold gave a quick Q&A and left with a hearty "Asta la vista, Fanboys!"

Solaris

: O.k., even more unexpected was James Cameron coming out to give mad support to Solaris. We saw a very creepy scene with George Clooney walking through a space station following a trail of blood. This scene took it's time. Very 2001. I really wanted to have that great spaceman breathing sound in the scene, like when David Bowman went to shut off HAL. James stressed that this film will be a completely psychological movie. There will not be (hardly?) any planet shots. This movie is focusing on the exploration of what lies inside our minds. "It will be a very intelligent movie," according to Mr. Cameron. All I know is after hearing him talk about this project, I can't wait to go read the book...and see the 70's film!

X-men 2

: The loudest and longest cheer of the whole Con was the appearance of Brian Singer for the X-Men panel. Wow! 2 looks good. Really good. The second film will focus more on the Human vs. Mutant aspect of the story that was in the background of the first movie. The movie also begins a set-up for a possible third film. Brian said that since the stories in X-men are so thick and complicated, it is hard to make one film about some of the favorite stories from the comic. Also, due to the nature of the films, he is forced to follow only one or two of the characters for better story telling (Wolverine and Rogue in the first movie); rather than give everyone equal time...but now that Halle has "slammed the little gold statue on my desk", Brian is definitely going to be expanding Storm's character. When asked about the possibility of perusing the Dark Phoenix or the Sentinels storyline, Brian simply gave a mirthful smile and said that he wasn't going to say anything. (my hero! Stick It to the spoiler seekers!)

...and finally...

Daredevil

: This will be good. I've rarely seen a director with this much passion and love attack a project with such vigor. He is a HUGE fan who fought for this. The scene they showed of Mat Murdoch arriving home and popping pills. The thing my friend and I both noticed were the obvious little details that a less caring director may forget. For example: they had no lights in his flat. Beautiful. The director was smart enough to realize that a blind hero would not need/want any lights or color in his hide out. This project is in good hands. Besides...Afflect ruled in Phantoms, yo!

Sound like fun? Next year get your ass to San Diego!

I'm off to fall asleep (I’m tired, so sorry ‘bout the typos) while watching the massive amount of Italian Horror and Anime I scored at the show.

Peace,

-=Right Bastard

Readers Talkback
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  • Aug. 5, 2002, 6:44 a.m. CST

    HOW CAN HE LIKE AOTC, I HAVEN'T SEEN IT BUT IT MUST BE SHIT

    by Dr_Zoidberg

    This guy is an ASSHOLE. AOTC is the biggest piece of shit since TPM, and I didn't even watch AOTC. Thats right, I boycotted it and so did millions of others. Thats why AOTC has BOMBED at the cinema. Hulk, on the otherhand, will make a great film.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 8:08 a.m. CST

    Check your facts, jpx

    by Judo John

    Soderbergh isn't remaking Tarkovski's classic; he is re-adapting the Stanislav Lem book on which Tarkovski's version was also based. If Shakespeare can be adapted time and again, why not Lem?

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 8:13 a.m. CST

    Nice Comments but...

    by KONG33

    Quint, you admitted yourself you were seeking spoilers from Moriarty just in the last post you made. So if ok for you, not us? Most of us read 'God Loves, Man Kills' 20 years ago, we just want to know who's in it and basic stuffs. I'm sure the director loves DD and Affleck, I wonder if they always will know what's best, though, I appreciate the film's being made. Mark Hamill continues to be awesome, I want to see his movie, I hope his character has an amusing list, if it has laughs at the expense of fanboys, that's fine. Arnold's last line made me smile.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 8:17 a.m. CST

    Another thing -Matrix and X2

    by KONG33

    Matrix previews sound really cool, I hope those scripts are really solid and the shows aren't cheap like nearly every other modern cartoon (excluding Groening-based shows). X2 will star Wolverine again, I may end up hating that character from overexposure. Quint, will we see this film as 'more of the same' (?) because it has a Sen. Kelly-esque character and human-mutant plot as well. Can you just tell us the dialogue is great or ok, or why Nightcrawler, the Priest, would try to assassinate someone? Thank you.

  • I really like Mr. Hamill, he funny and friendly. I hope his new movie reflects David Spade's pestering fanboy in those Just Shoot Me episodes. Who's all making cameos in x-men?

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 8:50 a.m. CST

    Yes, that AOTC - the $297M domestic-grossing BOMB...

    by No. 41

    Whatever

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 10:41 a.m. CST

    Well Stouty, I am impressed

    by Zubalove

    I've managed to choke down both your posts (the on above and the Vin Diesel post in another Talkback), and I must say: Congratulations!!!! You are the prestigious recipient of the Perfect Jerk Award for August!!! It takes a lot panache and style to come into a Talkback and both lambast everyone in one fell swoop while tacking hard to a flavor of the month like V.D. Overall, not only have you deserved the Perfect Jerk of the Month Award but you have pulled ahead and are now the leading candidate for Malicious Prick of the Year! Kudos to you!

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 10:48 a.m. CST

    "Stouty's Thoughts..."

    by cuttr

    ...An oxyMORON.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 12:08 p.m. CST

    MOTU clips from Comic-Con

    by Declan_Swartz

    MOTU clips from Comic-Con www.hyrule-legends.net/motu/clips www.hyrule-legends.net/motu/clips2 www.hyrule-legends.net/motu/clips3

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 12:23 p.m. CST

    Episode II was a pretty damn bad film!

    by JarJar25

    Star Wars is Dead. Bring on Two Towers the real Episode II.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 12:24 p.m. CST

    "the real Custer" is a joke

    by Voice O. Reason

    He's just saying that shit to make fun of AOTC boycott organizer "General Custer." It was funnier a couple of months ago. BTW: Stouty likes NASCAR...'nuff said.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 12:54 p.m. CST

    In regards to the first film of SOLARIS...

    by No. 41

    I'll just point out that "glacially paced" isn't usually a term of cinematic endearment--in fact, it's usually invoked as an indictment, not praise--and be on my merry little way.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 1:08 p.m. CST

    ViewAskew Fan Boy

    by RSTStop780

    Sorry to have to point this out, but the last line in the Daredevil paragraph should be: Affleck was da bomb in Phantoms, yo! Sorry, had to geek out.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 1:28 p.m. CST

    Solaris Mark I

    by Lazarus Long

    If you're not familiar with either (a) Russian cinema or more specificaly (b) the works of Andre Tarkovsky or (c) the novel by Lem, you're going to have a hard time sitting through Solaris. Most of the assholes around here are MTV generation and can't watch a film unless it has a million edits a minute. It must be painful to watch Kubrick just to convince yourself you're a true film geek (they've seen 2001 once, but Full Metal Jacket, The Shining and Clockwork a bunch of times, but don't know the other films). If you have any experience with classic World Cinema you'd have a bit more patience. Yeah, Solaris is deliberate, but you could say the same thing about a lot of Bergman, some of Kurosawawa. These films weren't made for YOU. They were made for adults who are interested in seeing something they have to think about. Solaris might not be a perfect adaption, but it's a very good film, and Tarkovsky is one of the most unique post WWII directors. He's made some great films. And they're all "glacial".

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 1:44 p.m. CST

    ComicCon

    by rev_skarekroe

    Sounds like it was fun. In Atlanta we get DragonCon, which hasn't had any really decent guests in about 6 years. bah. sk

  • Andrei Tarkovsky's Andrei Rublev is like watching the Ice Age in terms of pace, but it is still an example of marvelously poetic filmmaking. Most people nowadays would call it boring, and that is because most people today have been conditioned by most forms of entertainment to have the attention span of a gnat. Myself included...I struggle sometimes to watch certain movies over again...but that's more my problem than it is the movie's.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 2:31 p.m. CST

    Psssst... the fact that you visit AICN regularly makes you a gee

    by The Garbage Man

    The fact that you enjoy watching rednecks drive in circles and can't spell half of the words you use, let alone communicate a coherent thought... well, that just makes you a dumbass.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 2:51 p.m. CST

    Looks like Square USA is still alive, Stanley

    by The Garbage Man

    They've updated their content on the official Matrix site (probably awhile ago, but I can't imagine that the site would still tease their film, "The Final Flight of the Osiris," if it had fallen through). The first picture I saw of the short was of an Asian woman wearing a red blindfold; they've got a new pic up at http://whatisthematrix.warnerbros.com/rl_cmp/animatrix_card_9.html along with the titles and directors of each of the short films.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 3:30 p.m. CST

    Fanboy etiquette

    by Anti-fanboy

    Heheh--sums up many of the reasons for my choice of IDs :)

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 4:33 p.m. CST

    STOUTY & SOLARIS

    by Dead Megatron

    Two major controversies on Talback today. Let me give my opinion. First, this STOUTY guy is funny. It is like one of these characters you love to hate, so despiccable you gotta laugh of it (Phill Hartman

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 5:20 p.m. CST

    The only Tarkovsky film I've seen has been "Stalker"

    by JTylor

    And that was glacially paced to the point of being mesmerizing. Loved it, right down to the way dirty water looks from close-up. A beautifully shot film. And a very strange ending. Reminds me that I need to buy the Region 0 DVD from Scarecrow.com...

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 6:36 p.m. CST

    No, no, no...Affleck was the BOMB in Phantoms...Yo!

    by Jaka

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 6:48 p.m. CST

    Sorry about the K.Smith line

    by Right Bastard

    I know I got that line wrong, but I hadn't slept in about four days when I wrote that Comic Con review. In fact, I'm still recovering. The best night was the Bloodfire Comics party in a church that they converted into a Goth Club for one evening. Dancing, drinking Gin&Tonics, eating the supplied Cheezits, and a ton of cute goth/raver girls. Such a fun evening! There might be character info out there on X2, but Brian only mentioned Night Crawler. The villians are going to be kept secret. He said the major antagonist is a Human. Personally, I have a suspecion that we're going to have an appearance made by the Hellfire Club...but that's my completely ingorant speculation. The aniMATRIX was only a preview, so we weren't given info about who the artists/studios were. We were simply told "Several Big Ones". By the way, Phantoms WAS da bomb. Especially the first hour. I don't know what I think of the CG monster, but the beginning of the film was great.

  • Aug. 5, 2002, 10:13 p.m. CST

    The thing I'm looking forward to now with X2 is . . .

    by PoliMan4

    . . .a photo of Alan cumming in full Nightcrawler mode. He's filming now, so I hope we get this maybe even sometime this week. And also,-I'm surprised no one has brought this up- but does anyone know how many movies Cumming is signed on to do?

  • Aug. 6, 2002, 12:21 a.m. CST

    AOTC not a bomb...

    by Big_Timmy_C

    It wasn't a bomb. It was a dissapointment. I'm talking financially, though I personally feel the movie sucked, as well. It made a lot less domestically than TPM did, I believe. Around 100 million less. Still, it was a commercially successful and can't really be costrude as a 'bomb'.

  • Aug. 6, 2002, 1:19 a.m. CST

    You know who'd be great in an X-Men movie?

    by Voice O. Reason

    Jeff Hardy as Nightcrawler. Not only does Jeff do sick acrobatic spots, but he loves to dye his hair and wear body paint,and no one can understand what the fuck he says!

  • Aug. 6, 2002, 2:33 a.m. CST

    I heard there was a screening of RED DRAGON on Thursday, did any

    by SonnyChiba

    or is it true?

  • Aug. 6, 2002, 6:33 a.m. CST

    Cumming's contract (say that as fast as you can). POSSIBLE

    by hank_scorpio

    I don't know for sure how long he's contracted for, but if you look at the evidence then i'd say he's on board for x3 but that's all. 1.Many people making it have said that they see it as a trilogy. 2.It's been confirmed that at the end of x2, Nightcrawler joins the x-men. 3.This film is setting up Sentinels for the third film (that's why Singer was keeping silent about them).

  • Aug. 6, 2002, 11:49 p.m. CST

    Let's settle this Episode II argument once and for all...

    by Destroya

  • Aug. 6, 2002, 11:58 p.m. CST

    Let's settle this Episode II argument once and for all... (s

    by Destroya

    Go to the following link: http://boxofficemojo.com/alltime/adjusted/. You will find a list of the all time top grossing films adjusted for ticket prices and inflation. You will find STAR WARS ranked #2 all time. You will find EMPIRE ranked #13 all time. You will find JEDI ranked #14 all time. You will find PHANTOM ranked #19 all time. And finally, you will find CLONES ranked all the way back at #75 all time. That is a HUGE drop off compared to the other films. So, yes, by the standards of STAR WARS FILMS, Episode II was undoubtedly the bomb of the franchise. Now, if you want to be a Lucas apologist and lower your standards, you will stoop to comparing Episode II to Spy Kids, because that is all you have left at this point. Yes, compared to Spy Kids, Episode II was a huge hit. How desperate are you that you have to compare a Star Wars film to a lowest common denominator piece of Hollywood fluff? Face it, Episode II bombed as a Star Wars movie. PS: Expect Episode III to make even less, as Star Wars fatigue and fan apathy set in as the series wheezes to a close.