SDCC Panels I’ll Regret Missing — Saturday

It figures… The one day that I would prefer to remain off of the way over crowded show floor than any other really doesn’t have that much panel-wise to entice me — well, other than one panel that I will be sure not to miss. Saturdays at the San Diego International Comic Con have become a juggernaut of a fanboy throng of immense proportions. (Note: I typed “throng” not “thong”. I have no desire to ever see a “fanboy thong”, though I’m sure that it would probably be of immense proportions as well.)

10:15-11:15 Spotlight on Ralph Bakshi On par with such auteurs as Walt Disney, Tex Avery, Chuck Jones, and art spiegelman, Comic-Con special guest Ralph Bakshi redefined animation and became a hero to countless generations of fans and filmmakers. His name is synonymous with the great tradition of American cartooning. Bakshi is responsible for such memorable films and television shows such as Fritz the Cat (the first X-rated animated feature film), The New Adventures of Mighty Mouse, Spider-Man, Heavy Traffic, Wizards, Cool World, and The Lord of the Rings, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. Join Ralph Bakshi for a rare, in-person appearance as he discusses his legendary career. Moderated by Jon M. Gibson and Chris McDonnell, co-authors of Unfiltered: The Complete Ralph Bakshi, the only book chronicling the career of one of the pioneers of animation. Room 6B

Ralph Bakshi’s Wizards is still one of the movies that has left an impression on me after some thirty-plus years. I’ve wanted to see a Wizards comic book for almost as long. When I was serving as Editor at IDW Publishing I was trying to arrange a discussion with Bakshi’s “people” to see about making it happen. Hell, I want to write the Wizards comic book. I know there was talk of it possibly happening in the past. Maybe this panel will shed some light on whether or not it could happen.

11:00-12:00 IDW Publishing: Ideas and Dreams 2008— IDW publisher Chris Ryall presides over a superstar panel including writer Joe Hill; artists Gabriel Rodriguez (Locke & Key), Ben Templesmith (Welcome to Hoxford), and Darwyn Cooke (announcing a surprise new project and offering up an exclusive signature card available only at this panel); writers Brian Lynch (Angel: After the Fall), Steve Niles (Epilogue), Rick Remender (Legion of the Supernatural), and David Lapham; actors Shawnee Smith and Ken Foree; IDW special projects editor Scott Dunbier, and others. And they all guarantee at least a few surprise announcements of things to come! Room 3

Alright, here’s one panel that I’m not going to miss. I have it on very good authority that a couple of announcements are of projects very dear to my heart. Though, it will be weird to view an IDW panel from the audience as opposed to being up on stage and behind the table. No special SDCC chocolate for me.

3:30-4:30 Spotlight on Ray Bradbury The legendary science fiction and fantasy author has been a perennial guest at Comic-Con since the first show in 1970. Ray Bradbury talks with interviewer Arnold Kunert about his career and what’s up next. Room 6CDEF

Any opportunity to see and hear Ray Bradbury speak is an opportunity not to be missed. A true master in the craft of writing.

10:00-12:00 World Premiere! Mutant Chronicles Special “work-in-progress” feature film screening hosted by stars Thomas Jane (The Mist), Ron Perlman (Hellboy II), and Devon Aoki (Sin City). This is the first public showing in our hemisphere of this steampunk action-adventure. A disparate squad of former enemy soldiers undertakes a suicide mission deep into the seething heart of the otherworldly mutant scourge bent on human extinction. Unrated, uncut, unreal. Q&A with cast, director Simon Hunter (Lighthouse), and producer Edward R. Pressman (The Crow). Room 6CDEF

This flick looks pretty damn cool — bleak, but pretty damn cool. Though, a ten p.m. screening on a Saturday night when there are numerous parties, drink-ups, and general practices of debauchery happening in and around all of the bars and hotels within the Gaslamp District and general Convention Center area. I don’t think I’ll make it.

That does it for Saturday. One day left to survive… Er, uh… enjoy.

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