Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Comic Con

I was going to write an extended post on Comic-Con 2010 as I did last year, but I haven't had the time or opportunity to gather all my material and photos yet, so more to come.

But as a geek-at-heart (with a movie star/model's face and body, mind you -- LOL. Just kidding), I always have mixed feelings about the con, and I surely did this time as well. As Christoph Waltz said at the Green Hornet panel, "I have a confession to make: I'm not really a comic book person." The only thing I was remotely interested in getting on the exhibit was a Transformer toy! :)  I don't read comic books or graphic novels, and I'm not really big fans of any of those shows.

Oh no, the truth is out.

I am, however, still a geek:  a movie geek. If you've read my movie reviews since 2004, you'd know that I'm a big movie buff. I see at least one or two movies a week, sometimes more. I've been involved with film productions (both in front of and behind the camera). I love movies.

And that's why I go to Comic-Con, which itself has turned into a big playground and marketing opportunities for studios and independent filmmakers alike.  Throughout the con, I attended mostly the TV and movie panels. I like hearing about the behind the scene stuff from the cast and crew. I love seeing my favorite actors and filmmakers (but no, I'm not really into this whole celebrity-worship thing; I just appreciate them as I appreciate their work). I suppose it's the same thing with writers who geek out on other writers. The only difference is, I didn't squeel (hi Sara!). I've worked with big-name actors and directors before so I've been desensitized. Still, it's a neat feeling.

Every time before I went to Comic-Con, I always became apprehensive. I honestly didn't enjoy the crowd, the pushing and shoving, and the incessant waiting in lines. This year I minimized the waiting by only focusing on one revenue: Hall H; that's kind of ironic, actually, since the line to Hall H is always the longest.

The thing is, I have a press pass, so I'm able to get right next to the stage to see and listen to the filmmakers, which is wonderful.  By the time I'm done with the four-day extravagance, I'm usually more excited than apprehensive about the experience... well, until the following year, of course.

The highlights of this year's Comic-Con, for me, include:

- hearing JJ Abrams and Joss Whedon talk about TV and films. I have a new appreciation for them, especially Whedon, who is incredibly funny in person.

- being a stone's throw away from the likes of Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig, Natalie Portman, Sigourney Weaver, Hugo Weaving, Richard Jenkins, Eva Mendes, Angelina Jolie, Will Ferrel, Tina Fey, Guillermo Del Toro, Helen Mirren, Bruce Willis, Jeff Bridges, and the entire cast of The Avengers. Especially at the end of the Saturday panel then The Avengers (Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Downey Jr. et al) came out for a rousing surprise appearance, I felt like I've just been invited to a Hollywood party. That was rather cool.

- getting to know the making of some of the more obscure independent films. For example, Del Toro's Don't Be Afraid of the Dark, and a remake of Let Me In -- both looked really good. I like to discover independent films that I normally wouldn't have heard of.  (I met Guillermo last year at his book signing; he is an extraordinary visionary and extremely funny and candid.)

- the stabbing!  It happened about six rows behind where I was sitting. Granted, I was at the press area at the moment, and when I returned to my seat, I had no idea what exactly was going on. I think the Twitters from outside of Hall H had a better idea than those in the immediate vicinity. Still, it was cool to be near the heart of a "breaking news."

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