Thursday, July 24, 2008

Twili-con

Sorry, this is a day late, there was just SO MUCH to write, I couldn't get it all done yesterday.

First off, let me just say that nothing prepared me for yesterday. Nothing. Comic-con alone is one of the craziest things I have ever been to, adding the Twilight pandemonium on top of it only pushed the experience into slightly surreal territory.
We got down to the convention center at about 8:30 am and (thanks to Michael) didn't have to stand in line for our passes since they had been picked up the night before. With passes in hand we went directly to the line for the large panel hall for the day. Keep in mind our panel wasn't even going to start until 1:30 and we already had a sneaking suspicion it was going to be hard to get into. We were right. The line for hall H was WRAPPED around the convention center. I am not even joking. If you have ever been to the convention center, you know how huge this building really is- I tried to take a picture of the line, but it really does not do it justice.

Here's where we were standing on the complete back side of the convention center. No joke. We were a bit worried we wouldn't get in. Devyn at one point was about to go towards the front of the line and offer to buy someone's place. We came to find out later that the front of the line had been there since about 8:30 the night before and there were several Twilight fans who had simply spent the night in front of the hall. The line began to finally move at about 9:30 and we slowly crept toward the front of the building. We did make it through and thanks to Devyn and my mom--who was there for a different panel-NOT the Twilight panel (I"m pretty sure she'd want me to clarify that)-- we scored some really great seats.

That's when the waiting began. We were in the hall by 10:00 and the Twilight panel did not begin until 1:15. However, there was another panel before ours that we were able to see. The first panel was FOX entertainment studios discussing their upcoming movies "The Day the Earth Stood Still" starring Keanu Reeves ( a remake of the original 1951 classic) and "Max Payne" starring Mark Wahlberg. Both looked pretty interesting and both stars were there to promote the movies. (Yes, Mark Wahlberg really is that cute even in person.) The big shocker of the day, however, was right after the "Max Payne " discussion the Fox Entertainment host announce he had a surprise guest backstage HE didn't even know about and would be please welcome, all the way from Australia, Hugh Jackman. At this point, the ENTIRE 6500 person hall EXPLODES-- seriously, explodes isn't even a strong enough word.

Now, for those of you completely confused by why this would garner such a reaction, let me try to explain. (Keep in mind, I am NOT a die hard comic geek-but I fancy myself an enthusiast for the characters.) Hmmmm... what character does Hugh Jackman play in, oh, 3 movies so far, that would create such a frenzy amongst the comicbrained masses? Oh, I don't know, I little tiny part called Wolverine? From what I am beginning to understand, Wolverine is like the MVP of Comic characters. So here comes Hugh Jackman (a.k.a Wolverine) out on stage and everyone is freaking out because they know he is there to talk about the new movie "Wolverine." The fans were not dissappointed. After being completely adorable and gracious and profusely thanking the legions of fans who have made his career he JUMPS off the stage into the press/vip area just so he can shake the hand of the man who created the Wolverine character and thanks him for everything and for helping make his career as well. It was pretty awesome, and the energy in the room was crazy. He then asked the audience if they would like to see clips from the new Wolverine movie and the place explodes once more. The clips were fantastic. This movie is going to be insane. New mutants (in particular two very loved characters by the fans SabreTooth and Gambit.) I'm not even joking when I say that one of my comic-con companions actually got a bit choked up at the scenes--you know who you are.

The fox panel ended on this high note, but the energy in the room never seemed to calm down. There was about a 20-30 minute break so people could enter and exit the hall for the next panel. Not too many exiting people, though. Everyone knew what was coming next; the Summit panel featuring three movies titled "Push," "Knowing," and a little sleeper called "Twilight." They saved "Twilight" panel for last (they would have been stupid not to considering they pretty much knew the place was packed with fans.) I will say the "Push" panel was interesting and the movie looks rather fascinating, but it's super complicated, so I don't want to go into it right now.

So, I can't even begin to describe the Twilight panel, I'm just going to show you what happend BEFORE the panel even started when all they did was put the Twilight logo up on to the screens.

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Insanity. If for some reason you CAN'T hear the video, that's the sound of 6500 SCREAMING Twilight fans (notice the incredibly high pitch indicating the massive amounts of young teens in the audience.) The best part is when they all start chanting "Twilght! Twilight!" over and over.
They introduce the cast next, and I can't help but put this on the blog... it was crazy.

video

Apparently the guy who plays James has some serious fans. However, nothing prepared me for the onslaught of teenage ear piercing shrieks as when Robert Pattinson came out on stage. Holy Banana! I have never seen anything like that before in my life.

They began the panel with a bit of Q&A from the the Summit Studio representative. It was pretty obvious right off the bat that both Kristen Stewart (Bella) and Rob Pattinson (Edward) were either completely overwhelmed or completely unprepared for the panel. It was a little awkard. It was also obvious at one point in the interview that Cam (the actor who plays James) has never read the book. Which, of course, as I'm sure you all know, irked me to no end. The three actors that I was the most impressed with were Rachell LaFevre (Victoria), Edi Gathegi (Laurent), and Taylor Lautner (Jacob). They seemed relaxed and knew the story pretty well (which I think made them relaxed.) I do have to say the boy who will be playing Jacob I think has some great potential. He's a cutie pie and seems to have already captured the hearts of all the fan girls. Here's a clip of him describing his character.

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Stephenie didn't talk too much, and you could tell they seemed to really be steering the panel AWAY from the series (Breaking Dawn in particular) and more on the movie. She did, however, give her stamp of approval on the movie.. here's the clip.

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Apart from the absolutely unexpected madness of it all, it was pretty cool. That is, up until they took questions from the audience. Honestly, I have to admit, I was a little embarrassed to be a Twilight Fan. They said they would be screening all questions before hand to weed out everything inappropriate and redundant, and either the Comic-con staff dropped the ball or my definitions of inappropriate and redundant are very different from theirs. I'm not sure what was worse, the seven 13 year old girls who all asked Rob Pattinson if he knew how hot he was or the 40 something "Twilight Mom" who felt the need to ask Rob Pattinson and Taylor Lautner (but specifically addressed them as Edward the Jacob) if they wore boxers or briefs and WOULD NOT LET IT GO (like I mean asked three times shouting it into the microphone and then saying something HUGELY inappropriate to Kristen Stewart like "maybe YOU KNOW, Bella!) It was ridiculous and embarrassing for everyone in the audience. I actually felt uncomfortable.

Still, there were a couple good questions, one was someone asked the actors what made them decide to take the roles in the movie and the Edi Gathegi full on said it was because of Stephenie and her writing and that he loves all the books and has read them all--he also said he would without a doubt LOVE to play Laurant again if they make "New Moon" into a film. Which is good, because I love him and I think he is going to be a fantastic Laurent.

They did play a clip for us, it was pretty much the entire ballet room scene and it was pretty awesome. I'm still not completely sold on Edward (or even Bella for that matter) but I am totally sold on the director for these films. I think Catherine Hardwicke is making a fantastic film. One thing I loved it they talked about how they are doing almost all stunts and effects in camera--not a lot of CGI-- I always love when films do this because it gives them a realness you can't get any other way. I think that will be really nice on screen to help ground this story in some little piece of reality.

After the panel, we went down to the exhibit hall to check out all the other stuff, specifically the Summit Booth to see if they had any Twilight related swag. Needless to say, with over 6000 very rabid Twilight fans in the center, the Summit booth was completely overrun. We did manage to work our way over eventually and spin the wheel for some Twilight prizes. Thanks to all the other people we went with (husbands, brother in laws, children) we several spins on the wheel throughout the day and we each came away with a HUGE Twilight movie poster. We were really hoping for shirts, but no such luck. Here's a quick shot of the wheel I snapped while we were walking by.

Believe it or not, we were a bit Twilighted out a bit after that and needed a break. We went out to grab a bite to eat and made our way through the rest of the hall browsing and stopping at whatever looked interesting. DeEtte needed to look at all things Watchmen or Iron Man related and I was thrilled to find a giant Yoda.


Here's all my favorite things I found...

Biggest Wonder Woman EVER!



All metal my little Pony--awesome AND shiny!



Giant Yoda


Castle GreySkull from He-Man


All in all it was really one of the craziest things I have been to in a long time. I definitely think I'm ready to go again next year! We had a lot of fun and I was exhausted by the time I came home from sensory overload alone.
Stephenie Meyer gave interviews to Entertainment Weekly Online while at Comic-con and here are the links..

Stephenie's Interview

Enjoy!!

ps-- 7 more days!!

4 comments:

joanna said...

I had a great time reading this, and watching all the clips...sounds like you had a great time!

Amylouwho said...

We're you absolutely wiped out by the end of the day?! I was exhausted just reading about it. Sounds fun though!

Sara Walker said...

OK, after seeing the actor that plays Jacob, I am a total Jacob fan, he's a little hottie! He's going to be perfect for the part and will give Edward a run for his money.

Devyn said...

I completely agree with your synopsis of the twilight panel. I too was a bit embarassed at times, and completely disappointed by Rob Pattinson and Kristen Stewart.