Saturday, July 29, 2006

COMICS: San Diego Comic-Con 2006 Day 3 part 2 The Ghost Rider and Spider-Man 3 Panels

Saturday July 22

After I got out of the Lost panel on Saturday I milled about on the floor getting sketches here and there, I got one from Tim Sale (Spider-Man: Blue, The Long Halloween and Daredevil: Yellow), just a quick sketch but still very cool. My friend Dezi and I were not going to take any chances, even if we had to wait all day, we were going to get into the Spider-Man 3 Ghost Rider panel, oh yes, we would push and shove and claw, but we will get in. Luckily after a few hours waiting outside we didn't have to do any of those things, and of course thanks to our good friend, Ian, who spotted us as we completely miscalculated the line. Ian was about mid-way through; if we had to go to the back we definitely would have been screwed. By the way, while we were in line Dezi, who was wearing his Spidey shirt got asked to say a few words to the Spider-Man 3 Sony Blog so go and check it out. After a bit more waiting we get to go inside but it's already packed to the hilt so we had to split up. Dezi and I found two seats together a few rows from the back of the room. They had these giant monitors, because the room was at least a football field long, just in case you were in the very back, so really there wasn't a bad seat in the house.

When Dezi and I entered they were just wrapping up the Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest special effects panel. I missed most of what they were showing but I did catch the Davy Jones squid beard tests. I couldn't believe that all of it was CGI--very impressive. Even when Orlando Bloom's Will, lifts the Davy Jones' tendrils to take the key--it's all CGI. When it was over everyone cheered some people start to fan out--honestly I don't know what's wrong with some of these people, the entire con I noticed that when I got to a panel early for something cool the convention center has a relaxed policy about coming into a panel while another one is in progress so you can basically reserve your seat in advance. So why would these people leave? Don't they know that Sam Raimi and Nicholas Cage are coming up next to promote the biggest films for next year; don't they know they will be allowed to see secrets the average Spider/Ghost nerd will not be able to see? -- All I know is that my mind became focused when Dezi dropped a hint to me that he had heard that Sam Raimi did not come alone--he brought the whole cast. This was getting better by the minute on top of that every time there was a cool revelation or a surprise guest--especially regarding Spidey, Dezi would get so damn excited he would jump up and down like a little kid and beat up on my shoulder, and I thought I was a Spider-Man fanatic. Nick Cage, Eva Mendes, Avi Arad and Director Mark Steven Johnson (Daredevil) step up to the table. I enjoyed the trailer it was a little more in-depth than the teaser that was released a month ago. You actually get to see Nick Cage's face burn off, which looks terribly--awesome. Nick Cage is funny I think he's on crack or something, but he's definitely high. I think someone asked him how he prepared for the role and he said something like this, "Ghost Rider enjoys Jellybeans in a martini glass and the vocal stylings of Karen Carpenter, this is what he needs in order to relax while he's being chased by Satan." What the f#@* is he talking about? He did say that he listened to Trent Reznor's new album when he had to do the face ripping scene, makes sense, when I listen to Nine Inch Nails and Trent Reznor I want to rip my face off. Mark Steven Johnson seemed like a good guy he apologized for Daredevil again, which I appreciate, and he let us know what he thought about FOX after they gutted his film. I was in the naysayer’s camp when I found out a few months ago that Johnson was directing Ghost Rider, but after today I realized that he was a humble guy who was not given the opportunity to make the movie his way. When asked about sequels he referenced the X-Men films saying that, X-Men was good but X-Men 2 was better, he didn't mention X-Men 3, nor would I, cause as we all know it's a pile of monkey sh**--Maybe I should just let my Daredevil animosity go.

The panel ends and they don't waste any time as the emcee announces the guests from the film Spider-Man 3. Everyone is there except for James Franco who plays Harry Osborn. Toby McGuire (Spidey/Peter Parker), Sam Raimi, Kirsten Dunst (Mary Jane), Bryce Dallas Howard (Gwen Stacy), Thomas Haden Church (Sandman) and Topher Grace (Eddie Brock/Venom). Sam Raimi starts out immediately saying that they didn't have any footage to bring to Comic-Con-- the room erupted. He had a half smile to his face and said he decided to bring some clips anyway. Dezi began punching me. The theater dims and they show an in-depth trailer of the perils Spidey will face in this new film. Harry Osborn (James Franco) continues his father's legacy but he doesn't appear to be in a goblin uniform, Sandman smashes through buildings trying to suffocate Spidey. We also see the black suit Spidey and the mental strain that comes with it, as well as a hint of the evil that lies beneath the symbiote suit, but the ending was the most phenomenal as we see Eddie Brock in the church asking God to kill Peter Parker as the black drops fall from the ceiling. The last scene is of Eddie being totally consumed and a giant maw and tongue lash out at the audience--Venom has made it to the big screen. Dezi does a wrestling move on my shoulder. It was a great trailer even if it was unfinished, I can't wait till next summer, and obviously neither can Dezi. We get to the Q&A portion of the panel and everyone has questions for Sam, Toby or Topher. No one at first wanted to ask Thomas Haden Church anything until he gets his first question about working with Sam Raimi. Church said that it was a good experience and that Sam was nurturing, so much so that he has offered him his breast, trust me it sounds a lot funnier when he says it. Church also got the stupid question, if you had super powers what would they be. He raised his arms in the air and shouted he would like to have the power of corn--"I would be the Corn Cobb Goblin!" Sam and Toby said that the third film will tie up some of the loose ends from the previous two and that there will be an open ending to this film. This means to me that the one and only villain in the fourth film has to be Venom!

So that was my busy Saturday, I know it was long but it certainly wasn't boring. For all of you fans out there who are looking forward to Ghost Rider, the film opens February '07. Spider-Man 3 will be released in May of '07.

Sunday July 23

Instead of having another article about my last day at Comic-Con I can sum it up for you here in just a few sentences. I didn't attend any panels I just relaxed met some great artists on the floor and got a few sketches and commissions from artists like Billy Tan, Greg Manchess, Ryan Benjamin and John Snyder III. I totally enjoyed my stay in San Diego and I can't wait to come back next year for Comi-Con 2007.

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