What to Expect at Comic-Con: Movies


While the San Diego Comic-Con originally began as a showcase for, you guessed it, comics, the fact that most comics are turned into movies and shows these days has really blurred the line of what the festival is really about. In recent years, the main attraction of the festival has been movies, panels with creators, directors, writers, and especially actors of upcoming blockbusters.

This year’s festival will be no different, with several highly anticipated films making appearances and holding panels at the highly anticipated event.  We'll be covering the event at Better With Popcorn as best we can, so over the next few days, BWP will bring you extensive previews for the movies and TV panels and conferences expected for next week's event, which officially runs from July 21st to July 24th.

Right now, here's a preview of many of the upcoming films that will be presented in some form at the festival. A TV panel preview will follow:

Unfortunately, we have to start off our preview with a bit of bad news. It's actually kind of ironic, as Marvel Comic and DC Comics will obviously have a major presence at the event for comic book and graphic novel panels and workshops, but the studios that make their movies, Marvel Studios and of course Warner Bros., will not.

Normally, Marvel has one fo the bigger presentations, the main event, if you will, at "Hall H", the major hall for the convention. To the surprise of many, they will be skipping a major presentation this year, opting instead to pepper their projects throughout the multi-day event. 

That said, it has been reported that next year's highly anticipated The Avengers will have a big presence at the event despite the lack of a formal presentation. Last year's cast group photo was a major event, and I'd imagine it's something that Marvel wants to recreate, in some form. What the studio has in store is anyone's guess, but expect cast members to be on hand, as well as a potential teaser for the highyl anticipated 2012 blockbuster.

One Marvel project bound to get major attention, however, is the upcoming Spider-Man reboot. We’ve already seen the first promotional photos for The Amazing Spider-Man, but we’ll get a first look at the film, likely in the form of a teaser trailer, at next week’s event. Making appearances, among others, will be director Marc Webb, and Peter Parker and Mary-Jane themselves, Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone, on Friday afternoon.

Sony Pictures' presentation will also include the new Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance film, and Neveldine/Taylor will be on hand with Nic Cage and Idris Elba, 30 Minutes or Less (Director Ruben Fleischer, Aziz Ansari - no word on whether Jesse Eisenberg or Danny McBride will be there), the Total Recall remake (Colin Farrell and Kate Beckinsale - who will already be there for Fright Night and Underworld 4, respectively, Jessica Biel, Bryan Cranston and director Len Wiseman).

On top of Marvel missing the convention with a major presentation, as mentioned, Warner Bros. is another studio that won't have a presentation. Man of Steel, the Superman reboot directed by Zack Snyder and starring Henry Cavill, and The Dark Knight Rises, are currently early in production so it's no surprise that Snyder and Chris Nolan will be missing the event, so while it wouldn't be out of the question to see something Batman/Superman film related at the event, it won't be a star-studded affair as one would expect it to be.

One of the major events at this year's festival will be the worldwide, full-length premiere of Cowboys & Aliens, the highly anticipated blockbuster which stars Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford and Olivia Wilde, directed by Jon Favreau and produced by Steven Spielberg. The film was well-received at last year's event, and many of the film's cast and crew will already be on hand for this year's convention, so it makes sense that it would debut at Comic-Con, set to hit theaters a week after the convention.

Snow White and the Huntsman will be getting a lot of attention thanks to Universal Pictures. Kristen Stewart (who will be on hand for Twilight), Charlize Theron (who will like have to answer questions about the Alien prequel Prometheus), Sam Claflin (Pirates 4) and Thor himself Christ Hemsworth will be on hand with director Rupert Sanders (who worked on Halo 3, apparently) for an extremely meta event that will give us the first footage from the film.

Another classic tale getting the reboot treatment is the Wizard of Oz, and soon after Universal's presentation of Snow White, Dorothy of Oz will be presented. Don't worry, they're not remaking the original. Instead, the film is a computer-animated sequel based on Roger S. Baum's (creator L. Frank Baum's great-grandson) book. On hand from the animated musical will be Lea Michelle from Glee, Martin Short, and Patrick Stewart (yes, THE Patrick Stewart), among others. Other actors lending their voices to the film include Dan Aykroyd, James Belushi, Kelsey Grammar and Oliver Platt.

For the first time ever, legendary filmmaker Steven Spielberg will be appearing at Comic-Con to plug The Adventures of Tintin, set to hit theaters this December. The director/producer will also receive the Inkpot Award, given to artists who specialize in comic book or genre entertainment. It definitely is interesting that Spielberg has finally decided to go to the event, considering the film he's promoting isn't exactly the sure-fire hit his movies has been in the past, and has especially been given some negative attention for his decision to use motion-capture technology for the film, so "Tintin" could definitely use some good press.

Spielberg won't be the only legendary filmmaker to visit the event. Francis Ford Coppola wil be on hand with musician Dan Deacon on Saturday to present Twixt, a murder mystery type of film, which he is writing, producing and directing, and which stars Val Kilmer and Elle Fanning.

Friday will also bring us a presentation for Raven from Relativity Mediaa "gritty thriller in which Edgar Allan Poe joins forces with a young Baltimore detective to hunt down a mad serial killer who’s using Poe’s own works as the basis for a string of brutal murders". And yes, I think that sounds awesome. The film stars John Cusack as Poe, as well as Alice Eve, and is being directed by James McTeigue (V for Vendetta).

Another film being presented by Relativity that I'm excited for but that hasn't gotten much press yet is Haywire, an action movie with former MMA fighter Gina Carano in the lead. The film also stars Antonio Banderas, Michael Douglas, Bill Paxton, Ewan McGregor, Michael Fassbenderm and Channing Tatum, and is directed by Steven Soderbergh. What? Soderbergh and Carano will be on hand at the event next Friday.

FilmDistrict, a new distributor/studio that produced Insidous last year, will be on hand to present two upcoming films on Thursday, Guillermo Del Toro's new horror flick Don't Be Afraid Of The Dark (starring Katie Holmes and Guy Pearce) as well as Drive, directed by Nicolas Refn and starring Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Ron Pearlman and Christina Hendricks. Guillermo Del Toro will also be on hand for an interview with EW that will also feature Jon Favreau, as well as a panel for Legendary Pictures.

The abovementiuoned studio will  be on hand to present some early looks at Pacific Rim, Seventh Son, Paradise Lost and the Mass Effect movie, which will certainly be one of the biggest buzzed films of the convention if there are some major announcements, and their panel will feature Jeff Bridges, Bradley Cooper, Guillermo Del Toro, Idris Elba and others.

Other films being presented are Underworld: Awakening (Kate Beckinsale), Attack the Block (Joe Cornish, Edgar Wright), Fright Night (Colin Farrell, Anton Yelchin, Christopher Mintz-Plasse), Immortals (Henry Cavill, Freida Pinto, Mickey Rourke - who plays the Greek Titan Hyperion - badass), Knights of Badassdom (Emmy nominated little guy Peter Dinklage, Steve Zahn, Summer Glau and should-be-Emmy-nominated Danny Pudi), Twilight

Another interesting panel will the TheOneRing.net: Hobbit Talk, which won't feature any of the cast or crew form Peter Jackson's upcoming two-part epic, but will be a panel with staff members from the site, one of the most influential fan-sites on the interest.

Check back soon for a list of panels and events related to television programs at this year's event.

Comment 1
hari patil's picture

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