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Quint sees some footage from Frank Darabont's adaptation of Stephen King's THE MIST at Comic-Con!!!

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. I got one more little thing to talk about before I give up for the night. I had to cut out of the first half of the Dimension panel in order to travel to and from an interview with Zack Snyder about WATCHMEN (currently being transcribed, so watch this page tomorrow for that one!). Unfortunately, that means I missed out on the HALLOWEEN footage. I did get to hear Rob Zombie, Sheri Moon-Zombie, Tyler Mane and Scout-Taylor Compton talk a bit, but I think I missed most of the good stuff because they didn’t really go into the film itself too much. The Mist panel started off about 10 minutes after I got back. I’m trying to get Kraken, who was there the whole time, to write up HALLOWEEN… maybe I’ll get him off his tail tomorrow and he can fill you in. I’m rather curious myself what Zombie showed and how it looked. You guys know I’m in love with THE MIST. I don’t know if it’ll come together, but I do know the story is brilliant and the stuff I saw captured on the set was incredibly cool. But this was the first time I saw footage. The panel had Everett Burrell (CafeFX), Greg Nicotero (KNB and 2nd Unit director on The Mist), Drew Struzan (brilliant poster artist, contributor to the film and artist of the Comic-Con exclusive Mist poster), Laurie Holden (“Amanda”), Marcia Gay Harden (“Mrs. Carmody”), Frank Darabont (Director) and Thomas Jane (“David”).

They showed two clips and danced around plot points for the Q&A section… The biggest moment was when someone asked Jane if he’d like to further comment on his leaving PUNISHER 2. He stared straight into this dude’s eyes for about 15 seconds, leaned into the mic and said, “No…”

They talked a lot about how they shot, but if you read any of my set reports you’ll know what was discussed regarding how they shot it, etc. They showed 2 clips. The first is from the loading dock sequence where poor Norm the bag boy gets felt up by something slimey. CLIP 1 The camera movement is definitely like a more cinematic, restrained version of what you see in THE SHIELD. Darabont recruited the cameramen and DP from that show for this film and you can see their influence. The camera is like a character, always searching, zooming in during a take, refocusing. It’s not as dramatic as the Shield camera work, but it is there. Men argue in the loading dock. Jane’s character doesn’t want them to open the door. “Them” are Norm (Chris Owen), William Sadler’s character and a couple others. The meek Ollie (Toby Jones) stays neutral. Ollie: “They’ve lost their sense of proportion. Out there in the market, they were scared, confused. In here there’s a problem they can solve…” They open the door, Norm excitedly wants to see what’s out there, stands right by the door. Jane pleads one more time. “It’s a mistake.” Norm turns around, facing camera, and says, “Pussy…” as the generator is thrown on and the loading dock door rolls up. A sheet of white mist hangs in front of the door, not entering at first… then little tendrils close to the floor creeps in. Silence as they watch this… The guys start to laugh off Jane’s worry, when he sees something coming out of the mist. Pink tentacles squish on the ground, searching. It grabs Norm’s leg and pulls him to the ground, then tries to pull him under the lip of the door. He slams his free foot up to the door’s lip, stopping his quick slide into the mist. “Get it off ! Get it off!” Jane tries to help him, pulling at his arms. He calls out for the others who stand there, shocked. Ollie’s the only one who tries to help, but as he gets up there another half-dozen pink tentacles appear, probing for more. Norm screams and they cut. I liked the look of the shooting, I liked the actors (especially Toby Jones), but I have to say that the tentacles looked really CG to me. The film is still very far away, so I’m going to assume these are temp effects. The design is fine, but it needs more detail, more interaction with the mist around it, to sell it as being in the same space as the actors and the practical mist. I've since talked to Burrell who confirms that the VFX in the clip are at an early, early stage, but they wanted to have something with the creatures at the Con, not just the drama, so they took this temp clip to give the fans an idea of what they were doing. CLIP 2 This one played up the LORD OF THE FLIES element. For those familiar with the book, this is where David and his small group venture out in the mist, trying to find the pharmacy next door to the grocery store. This was a much longer clip, so I won’t give you every line uttered, but I will talk about the performances. It started with little Nathan Gamble playing Thomas Jane’s son. He’s in tears, his dad has told him that he plans to go next door. The acting on the kid’s part is great. It didn’t feel like fake kid crying. Jane comforts his son, hands him to Amanda (Laurie) along with the keys to his land cruiser. “If something happens to me I want you to take care of Billy as best as you can for as long as you can. You get out of here. Just keep driving.” He tries to leave, but is spotted by Mrs. Carmody, a religious zealot who is screaming about the end of days… she’s got some real evil in her and it shows through here. “Are you so anxious to make your boy an orphan?” He announces to the people in the market that he’s going to pharmacy. They need supplies and it’s possible there might be survivors. Carmody says that they’ll bring the monsters back with them, scaring the rest of the market. She starts to get a following and starts to fire them up, preaching madly, trying to stop the group from leaving. A pea can comes out of nowhere and hits her forehead in mid-sentence. The lovely elderly lady, Frances Sternhagen, lobbed it and tells her to shut it. Carmody launches herself at the old lady, but is dragged back. Sternhagen: “Stoning people who piss you off is perfectly okay. They do it in the bible, don’t they? And I have lots of peas.” The group goes to leave while Carmody is out of commission. Jane beseeches the army men in the store. All, but one say, “Fuck that!” The one that goes is Jessup (Sam Witwer). They walk out the doors, into the eerie mist… they are swallowed almost immediately by it… solid bodies turning to shadow turning to a white wall before our eyes. The first half of this clip was the human dynamic inside the store, the second half is a test of atmosphere and sound design. We follow our group in the mist, barely seeing them. You hear nothing but an unearthly distant breeze and their own footsteps. They get to the pharmacy doors. The doors are open. Sternhagen: “What do you think happened here? What do you think got in?” The camera pulls back into the pharmacy. It’s all hazy, ominous. That’s where the footage cut. I have no problems with this second scene. The drama is spot on, the atmosphere and cinematography are spot on. It’s what I saw on the day. And that’s not to say that the CG work will be crappy. Not at all. I mean, these guys just did PAN’S LABYRINTH and that was an absolutely beautiful movie. I think by the time the flick hits theaters in November that we’re going to see some amazing visual treats to horrify us long into the night. I have trust in these guys. To end it all, here’s the Comic-Con exclusive Drew Struzan art:

See you guys tomorrow for more Con stuff! -Quint quint@aintitcool.com



Readers Talkback
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  • July 28, 2007, 3:30 a.m. CST

    i like Victoria Beckham!

    by Boomers_Lips

    she's fierce!!

  • July 28, 2007, 3:34 a.m. CST

    isnt Wayne Jessup the guy Baltar killed on BSG?

    by Boomers_Lips

    when they were on Kobol.

  • July 28, 2007, 3:38 a.m. CST

    That's So Sweet...

    by drew mcweeny

    ... and I mean that in the "13-year-old-skate-rat" way, too. That poster art by Struzan is old-school cool. I wish they'd let them put together a poster like that. I know no studio on Earth is that cool anymore, but it'd be sweet if they were.

  • July 28, 2007, 3:40 a.m. CST

    GO TOM JANE!

    by montessaurus

    Anything that catapults Tom's star is fine by me. With his comic ambitions (Bad Planet) and walking off of Punisher 2 because of the shitty script, he has definitely established himself as the new Bruce Campbell. <br> Tom Jane for Prez! <br> With Frank Darabont, The Mist is gonna be just fine.

  • July 28, 2007, 3:45 a.m. CST

    The Fog

    by CeefaxTheCat

    On the surface it seems this might get dismissed as a rip off?

  • July 28, 2007, 3:46 a.m. CST

    O SNAP!

    by montessaurus

    Has anyone see this? http://www.thomasjane.com/badplanet/ And just so you know I'm not Tom Jane, I listen to indie rock and weigh about 150 lbs. Definitely not Tom Jane. <br> Wow i'm wasted.

  • July 28, 2007, 4:38 a.m. CST

    TheRealMoriarty

    by kwisatzhaderach

    On the money as usual my friend. In an ideal world Struzan would do the posters for every genre movie released. Just awesome artwork.

  • July 28, 2007, 5:48 a.m. CST

    At long last

    by Chest_Rockwell78

    Love Tom Jane, love Darabont, love the story, love King. Really looking forward to this one. But November? Where's the fucking trailer already? Come on, fuckers!

  • July 28, 2007, 6:02 a.m. CST

    Drew Struznan is amazing...

    by Sledge Hammer

    That is all.

  • July 28, 2007, 6:58 a.m. CST

    The Mist is just gonna be an emo Tremors

    by performingmonkey

    I'm a MASSIVE King fan but I don't rate The Mist that much at all. I thought it was good up until the tentacles appear. The fact is, tentacles grabbing/attacking someone in a movie is OK in something like LOTR but not much else. If the tentacles weren't in it it would be worth watching. I pray to god that the fear gripping the characters is the focus and not CG creature shots.

  • July 28, 2007, 7:03 a.m. CST

    The art of posters is DEAD :(

    by Darth Fart

    Thank the lord that we still have Drew around. I want to see the film because of that poster. It sells the mood, not a big head of the protagonist. Thanks to Darabont and Drew.

  • July 28, 2007, 7:14 a.m. CST

    What? A disappointing poster without 3 floating heads?

    by JackPumpkinhead

    What is this? I want some floating heads on every poster! It should be mandatory by law, and considering the look of 99% of posters and DVD covers, I thought it was already! Quickly, add a floating head on the left, another one on the right, and a big one in the middle. Some tasteful lens effects scattered around would've improved the look, too.

  • July 28, 2007, 8:05 a.m. CST

    I like the poster, Carpenter style.

    by CuervoJones

    And Victoria Beckham is a scary mummy.

  • July 28, 2007, 8:44 a.m. CST

    Stephen King is a nice guy, but he couldn't write his

    by lost.rules

    way out of a paper bag. Why does anyone read his crap?

  • July 28, 2007, 9:01 a.m. CST

    "The Mist" just isn't very good

    by Drunken Rage

    It's just a sketch, really-- no ending, no character development. Not that King's very good, anyway, but "The Mist" was minor, even for him.

  • July 28, 2007, 9:01 a.m. CST

    Has Steven King yet perfected his religious-believer-

    by CreasyBear

    as-bad-guy character yet? He's tried to write that same character a hundred times. You'd think he'd do it to his satisfaction and then move on. Though I guess not.

  • July 28, 2007, 9:03 a.m. CST

    Or Stephen King.

    by CreasyBear

    He's a famous author, too.

  • July 28, 2007, 9:10 a.m. CST

    Fantastic poster.

    by Felix Buckman

    Old skool creepiness. Plus, Darabont is a gifted artist. This movie will do exactly what it sets out to do. I'm not a big King fan, but I have high hopes here.

  • July 28, 2007, 9:11 a.m. CST

    The Short Story **SPOILER**

    by Cinemajerk

    I really dug the story. I wonder how the movie is going to deal with the ending tho. In the book the lead character and his son after escaping the supermarket, try to drive back to their house with some other survivors in an attempt to find his wife who was left there. But they give up after they realize the place is surrounded by creatures. They assume she is dead. Although it looked bad, They just drive away without real proof. I bet in the movie they reunite with the wife's character tho. Just a feeling about how Hollywood works. Also, I wonder if the movie will end the same way with the HUGE monster hundreds of feet tall walking over the car and dissappearing into the mist. Looking forward to it tho.

  • July 28, 2007, 9:25 a.m. CST

    God, that should be the poster. Just no doubt about it.

    by where_are_quints_hobbit_set_reports

    Look at that, it's brilliant! PLEASE make that a poster. A film this good DESERVES an actual artist's actual artwork as a poster!!!

  • July 28, 2007, 9:29 a.m. CST

    & fuck you Stephen King haters, King rules.

    by where_are_quints_hobbit_set_reports

    Can't STAND when idiots insult Stephen King. Seriously, whether you're an ADD (note: not advanced dungeons & dragons) 13-year-old who thinks his books are too long and boring, or some stuck-up douchebag who thinks a bachelor's degree makes you Harold Bloom, my repsonse is the same: FUCK YOU!

  • July 28, 2007, 11:05 a.m. CST

    Great Poster

    by Zath_ras

    It's like "Invaders from Mars". Jane needs to bump into J.J. Abrams backstage. He is so KIRK dammit!

  • July 28, 2007, 11:53 a.m. CST

    RobertS1lence, the AICN noob...

    by IAmJack'sUserID

    Take the gap out of the url -- similar motion to the one of you removing the stick from your ass -- and presto! Teh internet webpaeg! Magically delicious.

  • July 28, 2007, 12:10 p.m. CST

    Creasybear

    by Bass Bastardson

    He has moved on. The Mist was written almost 30 years ago. Look for the evil religious zealot in anything he's written in the past two decades and let me know if you find one.

  • July 28, 2007, 12:13 p.m. CST

    What's with all the King haters?

    by DarthJedi

    Granted his later stuff was pretty lame (Tommyknockers anyone?) but his early stuff is classic horror. The Stand is still in my top 5 all time favorite books, and The Mist is one of my faves by King. Nice job Quint! Can't wait for this to come out. Even if it has crappy CG, I'm still there on opening day! Can't wait to see if Darabount nails this or screws it up.

  • July 28, 2007, 12:27 p.m. CST

    robert s1lence

    by montessaurus

    obviously because you're fucking retarded and this is your very first time at aintitcool... <br> TAKE OUT THE SPACES! <br> and you're fucking retarded.

  • July 28, 2007, 1:47 p.m. CST

    Yeah, that must be why...

    by TheRealSeveren

    The Mist is one of the most popular short stories of all time...because King cant write his way out of a paper bag. If you insist on being negative at least make a valid point. Id love to see The Jaunt translated to film. The end of that one scared the shit out of me. Talked with Rob Cohen about adapting it for the upcoming Nightmares and Dreamscapes 2nd season and he had never heard of it. Shame...

  • July 28, 2007, 4:04 p.m. CST

    Bass Bastardson

    by CreasyBear

    How about the evil religious zealot roaming the streets outside Boston, and the parents of the protag's new friend, in CELL, one of his most recent books?

  • July 28, 2007, 4:44 p.m. CST

    I dont know about the movie...

    by kilik777

    I do know the audio book is one of the best Ive ever heard. http://tinyurl.com/pp8do

  • July 29, 2007, 4:17 a.m. CST

    Saw "The Mummy 2" on tv last night

    by BenBraddock

    Fuck me, that was utter UTTER shite

  • July 29, 2007, 12:40 p.m. CST

    Kilik777

    by DarthJedi

    Man, I had forgotten about that audio book! Some of the voice acting was pretty bad, like when they were describing the pink bugs, but the 3D stuff on there was a pure mindfuck! I swear it sounded like there was someone/something behind you or to the side of you sometimes. Pretty damn freaky.

  • July 29, 2007, 4:08 p.m. CST

    King Is King

    by micturatingbenjamin

    Look, you don't have to like King's books, and I don't have to like whatever the hell is that you like. I will only step to the plate for the guy on behalf of his life's work (truncated at the end, though it may be): The Dark Tower. If you've only read one thing by Stephen King, and it ain't one of those books, give Drawing of the Three a shot. Seriously, it's my favorite of the series.<p>It's post-addiction King, in that lean and mean time when he wrote lots of words, but they were all deft, and well-written. King is my favorite author, because he doesn't come to the table with anything other than his need to tell the tale, and there's no pretension.<p>Again, don't judge the man by lousy short stories, go for the series he calls his life's work. <p>The parts I liked about 'The Mist' were the canny realism of what people would have to do if they were caught in a grocery store surrounded by cthuloid creatures. Yeah, I thought the end was a very "short story" ending, which is always the danger in adapting these King short stories...some come out awesome though, 1408 was an achievement for good old fashioned thriller cinema. Great stuff. And the end of that movie is brilliant. Dead on Stephen King. Anyway, the poster is fantastic, I hope they use that, and looking forward to this...Because Thomas Jane has been one of my favorite actors since I was forced to sit through Dreamcatcher. He was my favorite part of that movie...next to Dudditz. That guy was pretty good, and so was the kid.

  • July 29, 2007, 4:52 p.m. CST

    Not the Raggedy Man or the phoners,

    by CreasyBear

    but like I said, certain other characters.

  • July 29, 2007, 6:31 p.m. CST

    If it stays true...

    by Null Arc

    To the original story, it has the possibility to be a very good movie. I think that this is one of his better stories, and has alot of possibility to develop a good back story. The Arrowhead project had so little mentioned about it, this could build the story more, but the idea of a huge stalking monster that disappeares into the dark mist. I hope it they don't screw it up!

  • July 29, 2007, 7:02 p.m. CST

    They should adapt it as is . . .

    by Nice Marmot

    . . . it's good enough for fans and people who don't know what's going on. SPOILER - The soldiers hanging themselves says it all about the military/Arrowhead Project involvement. They better not get any closer to the cause of it all in the movie.

  • July 29, 2007, 7:18 p.m. CST

    King is a...

    by Red Ned Lynch

    ...name brand, and like name brands he has become generic and predictable. But he wasn't back in the 70s, when he picked up the torch from Richard Matheson and dragged contemporary horror fiction kicking and screaming into the later half of the 20th century. The tools he used to do it, the pop culture references, the heavy reliance on a modern day American Gothic rogues' gallery of characters, have been so imitated by others that they now seem horrible cliches. But in the 70s when Carrie and Salem's Lot hit they changed the playing field for horror/fantasy and did an awful lot of the heavy lifting in moving the genres into the mainstream. So don't be dicks about King. If you're here at this site, digging the shit they talk about here, you owe him.

  • July 29, 2007, 7:22 p.m. CST

    And nothing would be a bigger...

    by Red Ned Lynch

    ...dumber mistake than giving this story a definitive ending. Except trying to come up with an definitive explanation for what happened. And character development? The movie is a snapshot. The main action takes place in a very short period of time. A character study might be appropriate, and within the confines of King's usual repertoire of characters it is. Of course, this is one of my favorite King stories, because of the Lovecraftian/50's monster mashup feel, because it is such a snapshot of people falling into inexplicable horror, because it is so open-ended at both ends. Looking forward to and terrified of how badly they will mess it up at the same time.

  • July 29, 2007, 9:22 p.m. CST

    Cell had a slightly disappointing ending...

    by Fridge

    ...it got too sci-fi, not enough horror elements by the time it was over. It was still a nice read and the beginning rocked. I cant wait to see how Roth ruins it.

  • July 29, 2007, 10:57 p.m. CST

    I can't imagine Roth ruining Cell...

    by Chopper Sullivan

    because it already sucked to begin with. There was some major cringe worthy dialogue in that book, as in a lot of King's newer stuff. He has this obsession with people talking in cutesy catchphrases and pop culture refrences that can kill a lot of the tension he builds. And I really don't get what is so special about the Mist. I hadn't heard of it until I read about them making this movie, and I was really underwhelmed by it. Maybe I was expecting too much after Quint and some of you talkbackers referenced it as some truly great horror, but it's really a bland story. People are stuck in a store with tentacles and spiders outside. Then they drive away in a car. The End. I can't see that making a great film.

  • July 30, 2007, 9:27 a.m. CST

    Chopper Sullivan

    by Nice Marmot

    Yeah, you mention what happens in The Mist but not the slow buildup of tension and mounting fear in between said events. THAT's what people like so much about The Mist. I don't know, maybe the fans, myself included, read it at a younger age, maybe if I read it as an adult I would have said "meh." All I know is I think the story rocks and there are a hell of a lot of others who agree with me.

  • July 31, 2007, 7:43 a.m. CST

    Trollenberg Terror?

    by Harker-Writes

    Mist and tentacles and people isolated. It all sounds like The Trollenberg Terror aka The Crawling Eye. John Carpenter said it inspired The Fog. Did it also inspire The Mist?

  • July 31, 2007, 10:40 a.m. CST

    Chopper Sullivan

    by Clem Cadiddlehopper

    I do agree with you on one thing, if King has one drawback it is his dialogue. Plain and simple, the man has a terrible sense of humor, he just isn't funny but tries to be a lot. Bear in ming that this is coming from a huge fan, I've read most of his books and The Stand is my all-time favorite of any writer but King is not funny. He is stuck in his head of an 8th grade kid from Maine and still making the same jokes he did back then. The most shining example is Eddie in the Dark Tower series, fantastic books but my god how many times I have wanted Roland to just blow his head off for those terrible, smart-ass, eye-rolling groaners of jokes he makes constantly. Saw more of it in the Cell too. Steven King, awesome, unfunny writer

  • July 31, 2007, 10:49 a.m. CST

    "Longer than you think, Dad! Longer than you think!"

    by Somerichs

    nt

  • Dec. 1, 2007, 10:59 a.m. CST

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