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WonderCon Part 1!

03.02.2009

This weekend I found myself in San Francisco at WonderCon, among costumed geeks and hard core comic book and video game fans. Which was appropriate, since I'm at least as big a geek as the costumed Black Canaries and Con-prerequisite Storm Troopers. Maybe not as much as the guy dressed as Wonder Woman, but then, we can't all wear those shorts. JoBlo will have a video feature showing some of the more, um, colorful Con-goers and the celebrity interviews from the event, but here is a wrap up of the film panels I saw.

We got a peek at ASTRO BOY, the animated film based on the Japanese Manga and 1960's television series. The animation looks great and the super-cutsie Astro Boy is pretty close to the original. In the clip we saw, Astro Boy is falling (probably from out a window) and plummeting to his death...until he discovers that he has flames shooting out of his feet. (Does that sound funny to anyone else?) His attempt to make them work reminded me, and a few of my neighbors at the panel, of the scene in IRON MAN where he tries out his suit for the first time. As he masters flight, he flies over the futuristic city, dodging flying cars an bursting through the clouds...SUPERMAN, anyone? At the end he says, “Wow, that's cool. I have to show Dad!”. ASTRO BOY will be released October 23, 2009.

Next up was the sci-fi film PANDORUM. Starring Ben Foster and Dennis Quaid, it's the story of two men who wake up on a ship the size of a small city with no memory of who they are or why they're there. There is a threat of some sort (it was not revealed in the panel) and they are not alone. We saw the trailer, which was premiering for the first time ever. We see quick and really shaky flashes of panicked people running in a dark ship and talking about a syndrome called “pandorum” that affects people who have been out in space too long. Pretty damn cool tag line, “Don't fear the end of the world. Fear what happens next.” At the panel, we were told that is was a really grueling shoot and martial arts star (and actor in the film) Kung Lee said that there is quite a bit of fighting. He said that he started out wanting to do all the stunts himself but ended up with a ton of bruises. What we saw looked great and it's from Paul W. S. Anderson, so I'm pretty sure it's going to be full of action. But, um, so was DEATH RACE. (Don't tell anyone, but I loved that awful thing.) PANDORUM will be released September 4th, 2009.

We also got a look at ALIEN TRESPASS, a fifties-style monster movie starring Eric McCormack, Jenni Baird, Joy Thompson and Dan Lauria. The promo we saw in the panel was done in the style of an old news reel and talked about the grandparents of the actual actors in the film (McCormack's grandfather, M. Eric McCormack) having done a monster movie that was never released. The only evidence of it is an interview reel from the fifties. When two bumbling construction men find a print of the film in modern times, they release it. Studio execs debate whether or not it's a fake since the colors are so good...I'm assuming this isn't part of the film but I hope it's part of the DVD/Blu-ray. It was hysterical. The film itself is done in what we are told is completely accurate fifties style. We didn't see much actual footage, but the general story is that an astronomer (McCormak) and his wife (Thompson) are home having an anniversary dinner, and waitress Tammy (Baird) is across town working, when they see a shooting star. It turns out to be an alien space ship and two aliens escape. Urp, one of the aliens, realizes that Ghota, the other, will eat everything in sight and destroy the world unless he takes over someone's body and stops him. Aaand it's McCormack. He told us in an interview afterward that it was difficult to master the fifties style of speech, which is anything but naturalistic. The film looks cute, and I'm hoping it's as much fun to watch as the actors seemed to have making it.

In Part 2, I'll talk about the two big panels, WATCHMEN (seriously, I didn't hate it) and TERMINATOR: SALVATION...I'm drooling over this one. I'm heading back out to the floor. I pissed off a furry yesterday though, so I'm avoiding aisle 1000.


What the...?

Source: JoBlo.com

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