July 28, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.
If Hollywood seemed a tad quieter than normal this past weekend, there was a good reason: Like moths to a porch light — or Batman to the Bat Signal — film and television creators, executives and stars were drawn en masse to downtown San Diego in an effort to drum up excitement for their upcoming wares at the annual Comic-Con International pop-culture expo. The unveiling of the first footage from the highly anticipated superhero mash-up “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and an extended early glimpse at “The Avengers: Age of Ultron” may have sent the biggest reverberations through the four-day film, television, video-game and comic-book fest. But there was plenty of other news to stir the excitement of the 130,000 or so convention-goers who descended upon the San Diego Convention Center, many decked out in costume, to watch exclusive […]
July 27, 2014 | 7:52 p.m.
Many amateur artists became part of a world record this weekend — another feather in the cap of “The Simpsons,” or more specifically, a feather on Homer’s Dome at San Diego’s Comic-Con International. The art installation Homer’s Dome included a mural that sat next to the San Diego Convention Center, blank and awaiting thousands of willing painters. The canvas had 5,565 squares in a paint-by-numbers type of format that the organizers were trying to fill out over the course of Comic-Con. The FXX team behind the event hoped to break the Guinness World Record for the most contributions to a painting by the numbers. ———— FOR THE RECORD July 29, 9:12 a.m.: A previous version of this post contained several errors. “Homer’s Dome” is the name of the projection mapping experience and demo of the “Simpsons World” digital and online […]
July 25, 2014 | 3:19 p.m.
SAN DIEGO — There are plenty of Hollywood awards shows where people get gussied up in tuxedos, designer gowns and jewels on loan from Harry Winston. There are not so many, however, where attendees can be found dressed as superheroes, zombies and scary clowns. Just such an event was held Thursday night in San Diego’s Petco Park, where about 4,500 Comic-Con-goers gathered for mtvU’s first Fandom Awards. The ceremony, which will air on the college-demographic-targeted channel on Sunday night, was designed to celebrate exactly the sort of fervent, obsessive pop-culture ardor that draws droves of people to Comic-Con International every year. Other awards shows may be voted on by fans (think the People’s Choice Awards), but in this one the fans themselves were the winners. FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 The inspiration for the Fandom Awards came out of internal research […]
July 25, 2014 | 2:41 p.m.
With the 2014 edition of Comic-Con International underway in San Diego, cosplayers from around the world are out in full force at the annual homage to all things pop culture. From blockbuster movie franchises to video games and comic books, no reference is too obscure for these fans, whose costumes can vary from faithful re-creations of major and minor characters to personalized interpretations that add a unique flair. FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 Hermione Granger from “Harry Potter”? Check. Mojo Jojo? Yes. Kurenai and Asuma from “Naruto”? But of course. One of the Knights Who Say ‘Ni’? Ni! Not to be outdone by the fans, Hollywood has of course brought big names to the con, including first-timer Benedict Cumberbatch charming his fans, George R.R. Martin explaining how he is the first comic book fan, and even surprise appearances by “Interstellar’s” Matthew McConaughey and […]
July 24, 2014 | 5:00 a.m.
SAN DIEGO — Mariah Huehner attended her first Comic-Con as a newly minted comic book editor a few years ago, looking to network with artists. But at a nighttime party in a hotel by the bay, she realized that others had a different kind of connection in mind. “One of the guys suddenly had his hand on my butt,” said Huehner, 35, who is best known as the author of the “True Blood” and “Emily and the Strangers” comics. “It’s a shocking reminder that you’re seen differently.” FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 Comic-Con International’s dense crowds, Bacchanalian atmosphere and mask-wearing anonymity make it prime territory for misbehavior, according to both men and women who have attended the event many times. Here, and at other similar events around the country, convention-goers have been known to grope, stalk and take “upskirt” photos with […]
July 23, 2014 | 4:54 p.m.
If you’re planning to spend any time in downtown San Diego this weekend, keep an eye out for Homer Simpson’s head. That iconic bald pate is expected to take up a noticeable portion of the city’s shoreline in a clever bit of promotion for “The Simpsons,” one of thousands of movies, TV shows, comic books and video game titles vying for attention at the annual pop culture expo that kicks off Thursday. FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 Comic-Con International long ago evolved from its modest origins — it began as an intimate gathering in the basement of San Diego’s U.S. Grant Hotel in 1970 — into an important marketing platform for Hollywood, an opportunity for studios and networks to bring an increasingly broad range of movies and series directly to an enthusiastic audience of roughly 130,000 fans amid a frenzied, carnival-like […]
July 15, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.
Animation pioneer Jerry Rees will lead the creative team developing the Marvel Experience, a theme-park attraction expected to tour the U.S. and Canada later this year. A film director and producer known for his animation work in “Tron” and his 1987 milestone short film “The Brave Little Toaster,” Rees has directed 16 Disney theme park attractions around the world in California, Hong Kong, Florida and Paris. Rick Licht, the CEO of Hero Ventures, the live entertainment company that partnered with Marvel to create the touring attraction, said in a news release issued Tuesday that “Jerry Rees brought a lifetime of creativity to the table and took the Marvel Experience to places well beyond our imagination.” The touring dome complex, which will span two acres and reach more than six stories high, will offer superhero fans a 4D motion-based ride featuring an […]
July 07, 2014 | 2:17 p.m.
“Bayonetta” is well known among gamers and those who attended this past weekend’s Anime Expo, but the Japanese franchise doesn’t enjoy much mainstream popularity in the U.S. The action game-cum-movie could get a boost with the stateside release of the animated adaptation “Bayonetta: Bloody Fate,” due in October on Blu-ray/DVD. A mix of magic and gunplay, the feature-length film is based on the video game’s original story about a witch who awakens after a centuries-long sleep. Outfitted with magical hair and gun-boots, she tries to piece together her history while battling creatures of light and dark. The film originally debuted in Japan theaters in November 2013 and a few months later on Blu-ray/DVD. Fuminori Kizaki, director of “Bayonetta”and other anime favorites like “Afro Samurai: Resurrection” starring Samuel L. Jackson, was happy to lend his vision to the film. “Originally, I was […]
July 06, 2014 | 1:37 p.m.
“My name is Kimura U, and I am the most pink creator of the world.” Walking the halls of the Los Angeles Convention Center on Thursday during Anime Expo, Kimura U — wearing chunky pink platform heels, a pink leather jacket, pink tights, a pink frilly dress and ombre hair that faded from light purple to light pink — surprisingly fit in among a group of 200,000 attendees often eager to stand out through their apparel. But unlike the thousands of cosplayers dressed as characters, it’s Kimura U’s job to dress this way: She’s the Japanese ambassador of kawaii, a.k.a. the ambassador of cute. Appointed by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the position in 2009, U travels the world to promote Japanese culture abroad, specifically Harajuku fashion, a type of fashion based on trends in the Harajuku district […]
July 02, 2014 | 3:59 p.m.
The 23rd Anime Expo, the largest anime and manga convention in North America, is opening Thursday at the Los Angeles Convention Center for four days of exhibits, panel discussions, concerts, commerce and, yes, cosplay (take a peek at the gallery above for duds from 2014). After feedback from last year’s attendants, the Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation, which organizes the expo, has expanded the role of costume play in the event, creating more sets where cosplayers dressed as their favorite anime (animation) and manga (comics) characters can take photographs. “Anime Expo draws a lot of people who get into costume, and we wanted to provide an area for them to be able to take some really good pictures. We have a lot of really cool sets,” said Meg Amo, the society’s brand manager, citing a Japanese garden and a […]