Though the big news from Comic-Con may have been the bizarro story of a man stabbing another fan with a pen in the convention’s fabled Hall H (where higher profile film and television is touted), the studios did indeed get to showcase the latest and greatest of their fanboy/girl fare to a receptive crowd of admirers. After the scuffle over the stabbing, Universal showed off their road comedy “Paul” from Simon Pegg and Jon Favreau’s western “Cowboys and Aliens,” which both went over well with Hall H crowds. In her report from Saturday, Anne Thompson noted that footage shown from the new Harry Potter film was generating Oscar Best Picture buzz.
This year, with films from Gondry, del Toro, and more in San Diego, the influx of indie directors onto the Comic-Con scene is raising a few eyebrows. During the Eisner Awards, writer-producer Darren Dean announced that he would be adapting the Will Eisner graphic novel “A Contract with God” with the help of four indie directors. Barry Jenkins (“Medicine for Melancholy”), Tze Chun (“Children of Invention”), Alex Rivera (“Sleep Dealer”), and Sean Baker (“Prince of Broadway”) will all direct a segment of the film adaptation of the book. Anne Thompson reports on the directors’ reaction to the announcement: “‘It’s funny, tragic, sexy and disturbing,’ said Chun. ‘It’s about themes of immigrant life, of what it’s like to be a Jew in the 30s, making your way in the world.’ Jenkins was delighted to be tackling something out of his comfort zone, he said: ‘It’s all unified, written in the same voice. Each chapter is part of larger story.'”
Noting the recent studio gigs from Kenneth Branagh (“Thor”), Michel Gondry (“Green Hornet”), and Edgar Wright (“Scott Pilgrim vs. the World”), the LA Times‘ Hero Complex blog wonders who will be the next Christopher Nolan, which indie director will be able to soon command “Inception”-level budgets. Thompson has fine things to say about the Cera-starrer “Scott Pilgrim,” saying the film is “certainly not like anything you’ve ever seen before.” It’s not all rosy for the fanboy auteurs, though. It seems that while the Joss Whedon-helmed “The Avengers” garnered a lot of excitement from the crowd, something was a bit off with Whedon and some of the actors when promoting the project.
The highly anticipated “Tron” update (profiled in our early report from Comic Con), “Tron: Legacy” was a wild hit with the Comic-Con fans. Also announced during Comic-Con was the fifth name on the list of the English-language “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” adaptation: French actress Lea Seydoux. “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” director David Fincher was in town to promote his upcoming CGI feature “The Goon.”
To wrap up her coverage, Anne Thompson included a compilation of trailers and footage revealed in San Diego at the convention. Check out coverage from Entertainment Weekly, L.A. Times, Thompson on Hollywood, and a handy set of links from MTV’s movie blog.