CON: Rogue/Focus panel



I had some doubts sitting down for this panel if only because
these same guys were here last year promoting the same shit. When a year goes by
without at least a screening of the film, you have to wonder what the problem is.
Seven months of ping-pong CGI, that was the problem. Director, Ben Garant and
Dan Fogler came out first to explain the delay and were quickly followed by the
great Tom Lennon in full character wardrobe (a one-piece spandex track uniform).

After some quality scripted homophobic sketch comedy the trio talked about the
film, describing it as a ping-pong player who must avenge his father’s death by
playing in a deadly tournament of sudden death ping pong and introduced a clip
of the film that featured Fogler’s character, Randy Daytona matching up against
Terry Crews in the first game of the tournament. The scene played out hilarious
and had the audience roaring with slow motion spins and the powerful paddle
blasts of the sport mixed between break-dancing, a lot of screaming, and someone
getting killed. Christopher Walken acts as if he’s doing an impression of
himself in yet another random-but-brilliant performance. Soon after the clip
James Hong showed up and all hell broke loose.

The dance lasted 5
long & awkward minutes.

  • The film also stars Patton Oswald, Jason Scott Lee, Aisha
    Tyler, Maggie Q, Masi Oka (Hiro!!), George Lopez, Brian Posehn, David Koechner,
    and has a shit-load of cameos from the casts of TV’s ‘The State’ and ‘Reno

  • Garant describes the film as a homage to ENTER THE DRAGON and
    “very aggressively stupid”.

  • Apparently, Christopher Walken doesn’t know what the symbol @
    means. He was furious when changes were made to the script and he couldn’t
    pronounce the “word”.

  • In other Walken wackiness, one day on the set he brought in a
    birthday cake and sat next to it with a sad look. He pretended it was his
    birthday and sat around as the rest of the crew sang Happy Birthday to him
    over and over. He did this three times over the course of shooting the film.

  • Hong busted out some David Lo Pan moves from BIG TROUBLE IN
    LITTLE CHINA on stage, complete with crazy eyes and all.

  • Cedric Yarbrough got in line to ask his RENO 911 castmates
    (Lennon and Garant) why the chose Crews for the role of the big angry black

  • At the end of the panel, Garant announced the first screening
    of the film later that night. It officially comes out on August 31.


Director Bryan Bertino and stars Scott Speedman and Liv Tyler
gathered to talk about the new thriller and present some never before seen
footage. The film takes place over four hours in the lives of Kristen and James
as their night is interrupted by a knock at the door and the living hell it
brings with it. Three masked crazies torment the couple by trying to get in the
house and kill them.

The first scene we got was of Liv silently creeping around
the house, trying to lock all the doors and windows as these masked assholes
keep popping out of nowhere and scaring the crap out of her. Very intense
moments here. The second clip shows the couple finally fighting back as Speedman
struggles to keep one of the masks out and finds a shotgun quite handy in doing
so. The last clip was of a terrific teaser trailer that starts out as a slide
show of perfect homes and ends with that shot of Liv above crawling away from
another beating. What else?

  • This was Liv Tyler’s very first Comic Con appearance and she
    paid the price by having to recite some Elvish on her very first question. She
    did it with no problem and oddly aroused me.

  • When asked if he would like to play CAPTAIN AMERICA by a fan,
    Speedman said he’d love it and do it in a heartbeat.

  • Liv thought the script was a romantic comedy when she sat down
    to read it and ended up falling in love with the story and fought to get the

  • The two lead actors would run around a track just before
    shooting their scenes so their lack of breath would intensify their

  • Speedman, who was oddly quiet during the panel said the script
    scared him so much he stopped to go lock his front door.

  • This Bertino’s directorial debut. When Liv was asked about the
    similarities between him and Peter Jackson the Con crowd actually laughed.


THE DESCENT was one the greatest things to happen to horror in
years. This is why I was giddy like a school girl when I found out I could cover
director, Neil Marshall’s next feature called DOOMSDAY, a futuristic look at the
end of the world (check out the film’s 4 teaser posters HERE). Everybody I talk to can’t bring up the movie without
mentioning THE ROAD WARRIOR and the two films similarities. I agree. We were
treated to an exclusive teaser trailer for the film and while the sweet sounds
of Malcolm McDowell sooth you with great narration and the visuals of a
post-apocalyptic Great Britain are breath taking, I just couldn’t get Mad Max
and his tractor-trailer of death out of my mind. Marshal knows it too though. He
openly admitted to making the film feel like THE ROAD WARRIOR, ESCAPE FROM NEW
YORK, and THE WARRIORS as much as possible without pissing anybody off.

The next guy to
mention Road Warrior dies.

The film tells of a plague known as the Reaper Virus that kills
hundreds of thousands before the British Government builds a wall that separates
the survivors from the infected. Thought to be over 30 years later, the virus
comes back with a vengeance and people are starting to look for a cure among a
legendary group of survivors. McDowell, Rhona Mitra, and Bob Hoskins star. You
know what else?

  • Marshall guarantees an R-rating as there’s no lack of blood and
    gore throughout.

  • The $30 million budget is his biggest yet. As is the cast.
    Used to working with not much more than six actors in DESCENT and DOG SOLDIERS,
    DOOMSDAY had hundreds taking orders.

  • Five of the boys from DOG SOLDIERS and three of the girls from
    DESCENT show up in DOOMSDAY.

  • Marshal researched the greatest car chases in film for his
    final scene. He says it starts out like BULLITT and ends up like ROAD WARRIOR.

  • Marshal is in no way involved with DOG SOLDIERS 2

  • His next film is called THE NINTH LEGION, a true story of a
    group of Roman soldiers who fight for their lives after their legion is
    targeted in a devastating guerrilla attack.

  • Said he wouldn’t have wanted the job to remake THE WARRIORS
    but is excited to see what Tony Scott will do with it.

  • Marshall very much prefers his original ending to THE DESCENT over the
    pussy North American version.


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