Category: Behind the Scenes
The first Kansas City Comic Con comic book and pop culture convention wrapped Sunday at the Kansas City Convention Center at Bartle Hall. We bid farewell as Doctor Who’s Colin Baker headed to the airport to return home to England and other guests set out across the country after a long and exciting weekend in the Midwest, leaving behind some happy and (exhausted) fans. But first, crowds again lined the aisles Sunday, grabbing last-minute selections of prints from artists, books from writers, and comic books and collectibles from the several dealers on site.
Sunday saw more panels, more autographs and photo ops, and more conversations with creators.
Our vote for the best cosplay of the show? This Kansas City Royals-inspired Iron Man. What better cosplay ambassador to the first Kansas City Comic Con than this superhero?
But it was hard to beat this great costume of a Gnoll from Dungeons & Dragons:
Our vote for the best new addition to conventions anywhere this year was Jo Kamm’s 3D Photobooth. Unlike the 3D photobooth featured at last year’s World Series, the 3D Photobooth at KCCC printed highly detailed, large figurines. And unlike other 3D printing booths we’ve seen before, Kamm’s software and technology recreated recognizable faces. We’ll feature the process used at the booth in a later article, but our response and those of various passersby watching the imaging in process was simply “Wow!”
Here Kamm renders examples of a digital 3D, 360-degree image of both our Radagast ensemble from Saturday…
We could stop after just the above photo with actor Sean Astin, but we won’t. Kansas City Comic Con broke the mold this weekend, setting up a fun environment for thousands of attendees to get a major league dose of pop culture fun. You could meet icons of classic movies, like Pam Grier (1970s action film star), classic TV, like Butch Patrick (Eddie, from The Munsters), from current hits like Game of Thrones (Kristian Nairn), and classic 1980s video games (Billy Mitchell of King of Kong fame), to kids’ favorites (Power Rangers’ August St. John), classic British TV (Doctor Who’s Colin Baker), and megahits like The Lord of the Rings (Sean Astin) and Star Wars (Nalini Krishan and Orli Shoshan).
Creators from the Star Wars universe could be found everywhere, from current Marvel Star Wars writer Jason Aaron, to artist icon Michael Golden, to Disney-era Star Wars artists Bryan Fyffe and Joe Corroney. Creators from several major licensed characters could be found with Phil Hester, Ande Parks, Jai Nitz, Greg Smallwood, and Tony Moore. And then there is Jim Shooter and Mike Zeck from the superhero sphere of classic comics. Phew! That’s a busy weekend.
We had a great time with Rick Howland, star of Syfy Channel’s Lost Girl, which only recently wrapped its final episode.
Here’s writer CW Cooke talking with attendees at his booth…
The first ever Kansas City Comic Con began yesterday afternoon at the Kansas City Convention Center at Bartle Hall in downtown Kansas City. Thousands of fans met hundreds of creators of comic books, fiction, cosplay, and other creative pursuits. Many fulfilled dreams to meet celebrities of TV and film both new and from the past. Comic book conventions are all about spending the weekend with like-minded fans of anything and everything you could conceive of fitting between the sci-fi, fantasy, and superhero genres.
The first day was full of con-goers getting the lay of the land–getting sketches commissioned by their favorite local or nationally-recognized artist, getting in the front of the line to meet a host of celebrity guests, and getting the first selection from the great volume of dealers at the show. Helping out everyone were the yellow shirt-garbed “henchmen”–a well organized group of ambassadors that handled everything with a smile.
Guests included Pam Grier, star of dozens of movies in the 1970s as well as TV and film roles since, and in particular the lead role in Quentin Tarentino’s Jackie Brown. Ms. Grier is everything you’d hope for in such an iconic actress, and she had plenty of stories to share with fans Friday. She also hosted a special screening of Jackie Brown after the show at the Alamo Drafthouse Theater. Attendees received an exclusive Jackie Brown print signed by Ms. Grier.
Nalini Krishan and Orli Shoshan signed photos for fans and participated in photo ops, as did other media guests. Ms. Krishan and Ms. Shoshan were featured as Jedi Knights in the Star Wars prequels.
Your humble editor spent the day with author (and borg.com writer) Elizabeth C. Bunce at Table 617 in the convention’s Artists Alley. As much a part of comic conventions as print media creators and celebrities are cosplayers, and plenty could be found in the convention halls.
Review by C.J. Bunce
A feat of Carl Gottlieb’s contemporary, firsthand account of the making of the movie Jaws, called The Jaws Log, is that the author had not planned on writing the book during the production and yet his resulting work is a modern classic. After all, how could he have known the movie he was writing the screenplay for would be the kind of success to warrant a “making of” chronicle? Yet after production, with the buy-in of director Steven Spielberg, Gottlieb, who also played the newspaperman in the film, played a real-life journalist, amassing enough notes and anecdotes to pull the book together. Along with extensive interviews from the film crew and town locals at the shooting location in Martha’s Vineyard, the result was a step-by-step look at filmmaking, considered by many as one of the best “making of” books ever produced–originally published in 1975 just after the blockbuster was born. Forty years later the account holds up well. X-Men series director Bryan Singer has called The Jaws Log “like a little movie director bible.”
If The Jaws Log is your first foray into the making of the movie Jaws, you’re likely to have the same response. It’s no surprise Gottlieb was a successful screenwriter: Gottlieb is a superb storyteller. And if you’re wondering about the source for all the laughs that separate the tension in the film, you’ve Gottlieb to thank for much of that. Again, no surprise, as Gottlieb also wrote for The Bob Newhart Show, All in the Family, and The Odd Couple, as well as the screenplay a few years later for Steve Martin’s The Jerk.
We can also thank Gottlieb for gutting so much of author Peter Benchley’s novel that didn’t work (we recounted the elements earlier this summer in our Retro Review of the novel here at borg.com). The success of the movie, coupled with the absolute silence from critics for cutting and re-writing so much of the source work, is Gottlieb’s true legacy.
This Friday, Saturday, and Sunday thousands of sci-fi, fantasy, and superhero fans will attend the inaugural Kansas City Comic Con, a new comic book and pop culture convention to be held at the Kansas City Convention Center at Bartle Hall. The show has booked the very best comic book and fiction writers and artists in the U.S. as well as some great movie and TV guests.
Headlining the show will be none other than Jackie Brown herself, actress Pam Grier. Not only is Ms. Grier known for her leading role in Quentin Tarentino’s hit film, but she has also starred in the classic 1970s films Coffy and Foxy Brown, as well as Fort Apache The Bronx, Something Wicked This Way Comes, John Carpenter’s Escape from L.A. and Ghosts of Mars, and TV series including Night Court, Crime Story, Knots Landing, Miami Vice, Bones, The L Word, and Smallville.
Fantasy fans can meet Sean Astin, who played Frodo’s pal Samwise in The Lord of The Rings series, also scheduled as a show headliner.
Many Doctor Who fans will get their first chance to meet Colin Baker, who played the fan-favorite Sixth Doctor on BBC’s original series from 1984 to 1986. Known for his bright patchwork jacket, you may have seen him most recently in the funny film The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot, discussed earlier at borg.com here.
In this big year of Star Wars, Kansas City Comic Con attendees will get an opportunity to meet two actresses known for their roles as Jedi Knights in the Star Wars prequels. Nalini Krishan played Barriss Offee, a Jedi Knight and General in Star Wars: Attack of the Clones. Also scheduled to appear is Orli Shoshan, who played Jedi Knight Shaak Ti, also in Star Wars: Attack of the Clones (as well as deleted scenes in Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith). And check out the great prints above that will be available for animation artist Todd Aaron Smith.
Creator guests scheduled to attend the Con include Jason Aaron, Neal Adams, C.W. Cooke, Nicholas Forristal, Bryan Fyffe, Michael Golden, Phil Hester, Damont Jordan, Jim Mehsling, Jai Nitz, Ande Parks, Chris Sebela, Greg Smallwood, Rick Stasi, Bryan Timmins, Darryl Woods, Mike Zeck, and our own borg.com writer, fantasy author Elizabeth C. Bunce. Joe Corroney will be onsite signing the above print for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and check out this great KCCC print available from Bryan Fyffe:
The show expects to have hundreds of vendors, plus displays, cosplay, autograph and photo opportunities.
Kansas City Comic Con will be held August 7-9, 2015, at the Kansas City Convention Center in downtown Kansas City at Bartle Hall, the venue for the region’s biggest events.
If you’ve ever tried to pick up a complete collection of the works of Hayao Miyazaki on DVD or Blu-ray, you may have had the misfortune of buying one of the several bootleg or substandard quality sets available frequently on both eBay and Amazon. Finally Disney and Studio Ghibli are set to release a Blu-ray boxed set by year-end, including all eleven of the director’s full-length films.
The Collected Works of Hayao Miyazaki will be available exclusively from Amazon and is expected to ship November 17, 2015. It includes Blu-ray editions The Castle of Cagliostro, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, Castle in the Sky, My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Porco Rosso, Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, Ponyo, and his last film, The Wind Rises.
If you have already purchased the individual Blu-rays, the special features may entice you:
- Yuki no Taiyo (Yuki’s Sun) — a 1972 television pilot based on a manga by Tetsuya Chiba. It was directed, storyboarded and animated by Hayao Miyazaki.
Doctor Who fans get to catch 2-part finale of Doctor Who Season 8 in theaters across the country in RealD 3D plus a never-before-seen prequel to Season 9 in a special two-night event hosted by Fathom Events. It all happens Tuesday, September 15, and Wednesday, September 16, leading up to the Season 9 premiere Saturday, September 19, 2015, on BBC America.
You can check local listings or sign up here for an email reminder or text TVRADIO to FATHOM (328466) for updates.
Tickets will go on sale Friday, July 31.
Wil Wheaton will host an interview with stars Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman as part of the show.
This weekend in theaters across the country you could see some exciting previews of coming movies, including Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Everest (as well as some that look like duds, which shall go unnamed). One of the best was this behind the scenes look at Mission: Impossible–Rogue Nation, which hits theaters this weekend.
The marketing folks for this fifth entry in the modern Mission: Impossible reboot series have been parading this poster of Tom Cruise hanging from the side of an airplane for months. For any other movie we’d yawn and note it as another action sequence in what has really been a solid action series. Each film has Cruise doing some physical maneuvers. Who can forget Cruise in the 1996 original film, hanging by two cables as he hacks a CIA computer after lowering himself from a ventilation duct into a secure facility room from after bypassing a laser grid.
But this movie has something different.
Check out this preview and behind the scenes look at Cruise’s airplane stunt. (Trust us, it looks pretty incredible on the big screen):
Review by C.J. Bunce
If you agree last year’s X-Men: Days of Future Past is among the best superhero films of all time, and probably the single best film in the Marvel Universe, then you’ll want to see a new director’s cut released this month: X-Men: Days of Future Past, The Rogue Cut. Especially if you haven’t picked up a copy of the 2014 version on Blu-Ray, this new edition brings together the original theatrical release and The Rogue Cut, plus a disc full of new features, making this the definitive edition for most fans.
It’s the lack of a 3D edition that is the only miss with the new release. For most people that won’t be a problem. But if you have embraced 3D television technology like us, you’re just going to be buying a new Blu-Ray to add to last year’s superb Ultimate Edition so you can watch each version from time to time–because you just can’t miss this new edit of the film.
If you’re not aware of the quality of this movie by ace director Bryan Singer, check out our review from last year here at borg.com. On repeat viewings X-Men: Days of Future Past proves its worthiness as a superhero flick future superhero films will be compared to. This expanded edition certainly does nothing to diminish the original. It instead provides 17 minutes of additional scenes that explain plot elements skipped over in the original cut and it provides a better character study of nearly every major player: Professor X, Magneto, Wolverine, Mystique, Trask, Beast, Iceman, Kitty Pryde, and of course, Rogue. More Quicksilver (Evan Peters) would have been fun, but you can’t have everything. But we do learn more from Singer on his audio commentary about that character’s role, and that of Mystique, Beast, Magneto, and the rest of the mutants in next year’s sequel X-Men: Apocalypse.
The features disc includes a nine-part “making of” series and a 30-minute roundtable featuring Singer and most of the show’s stars. The audio track features Singer and editor/composer John Ottman. Both provide an excellent look at the storytelling process as adapted to the filmmaker’s role.