Posted on Monday, July 11th, 2011 by Germain Lussier
Over the weekend, San Diego Comic-Con announced the programming schedule for Saturday and Sunday at this year’s convention. Usually, Saturday is the most impressive day as it’s the weekend and has the biggest amount of people coming into the area while Sunday is usually the most unexciting day as it’s the final day of the event and everything is winding down. For 2011, each day is going in the opposite direction. Saturday’s movie programming is very underwhelming, save for a few films like Snow White and the Huntsman and Francis Ford Coppola’s TWIXT, with more cool TV panels popping up than usual. Sunday is significantly better than usual, especially if you like TV, with Hall H panels on It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Glee and more.
Read about the highlights, with commentary and more after the jump.
To be fair, most of these complaints stem from the fact that the movies are getting short changed at the convention this year. For comic book and TV fans, there are actually great things on almost every day. But this is primarily a film site so we try to focus on that. Here are the Saturday highlights (with commentary in block quote) followed by Sunday. To view the full Saturday schedule, click here and for the full Sunday schedule, click here.
10:00-10:45 Chuck Screening and Q&A— Comic-Con fan-favorite Chuck returns with a bang for its farewell panel to celebrate its fifth and final season. Executive producer and co-creator Chris Fedak, along with series stars Zachary Levi (Alvin and the Chipmunks), Yvonne Strahovski (upcoming My Mother’s Curse), Joshua Gomez (Without a Trace), Ryan McPartlin, Mark Christopher Lawrence (The Pursuit of Happyness), Vik Sahay (Good Will Hunting), Scott Krinsky (The O.C.) with Sarah Lancaster (The Good Doctor), and Adam Baldwin (Serenity), offer a Q&A with fans and an unforgettable video presentation. Produced by Fake Empire, Wonderland Sound and Vision in association with Warner Bros. Television, Chuck airs Friday at 8:00 ET/PT on NBC, and Chuck: The Complete Fourth Season will be released on Blu-ray and DVD this fall. Ballroom 20
10:00-11:00 Motion Picture and Television Production Designers— In collaboration with a highly skilled art department, the production designer lays out the designs that will guide a small army of decorators, carpenters, sculptors, painters, and artisans of all sorts, to bring into existence those fantastic worlds that fire everyone’s imagination. Panelists include moderator John Muto (Terminator 2:3D), Cece DeStefano (Alias), Jim Bissell (Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol), Edward Thomas (Torchwood, Dr. Who), and Greg Melton (The Walking Dead). Room 25ABC
11:45-12:45 TWIXT: Francis Ford Coppola and Dan Deacon— Legendary filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola and acclaimed musician Dan Deacon present sequences from Coppola’s latest film, TWIXT, and involve the audience in a dress rehearsal of the completely unique and innovative way they plan on performing it. Plus a Q&A session. Hall H
This is Hall H’s first panel on Saturday and, while it could be memorable and exciting, I don’t know. It just doesn’t feel like something that’ll blow the minds of 7,000 people. Coppola is a legend, there’s no denying it, but it’ll be interesting to see how he deals with the hype machine that is Comic Con.
1:00-2:00 Relativity Media: Immortals— Visionary director Tarsem Singh transports viewers in this epic tale of treachery, vengeance, and destiny in this stylish and visually spectacular 3D action adventure. The brutal and bloodthirsty King Hyperion and his murderous Heraklion (Mickey Rourke) rampage across Greece in search of the long lost Bow of Epirus. With the invincible Bow, the king will be able to overthrow the Gods of Olympus and become the undisputed master of his world. As village after village is obliterated, a stonemason named Theseus vows to avenge his mother, who was killed in one of Hyperion’s brutal raids. When Theseus meets the Sybelline Oracle Phaedra, her disturbing visions of the young man’s future convince her that he is the key to stopping the destruction. With her help, Theseus assembles a small band of followers and embraces his destiny in a final, desperate battle for the future of humanity. Stars Henry Cavill, Stephen Dorff, Freida Pinto, Luke Evans, Kellan Lutz will participate in this panel alongside producers Gianni Nunnari and Mark Canton. Hall H
1:00-2:00 Community— The cast and creative team from Sony TV’s critically acclaimed NBC series — Joel McHale (The Soup), Chevy Chase (Hot Tub Time Machine), Donald Glover (30 Rock), Yvette Nicole Brown (Rules of Engagement), Danny Pudi (Greek), Gillian Jacobs (Choke), Alison Brie (Mad Men), and Ken Jeong (The Hangover Part II), and executive producers Dan Harmon (The Sarah Silverman Program), Joe Russo (Arrested Development), Anthony Russo (Arrested Development), Neil Goldman (Scrubs), Garrett Donovan (Scrubs) and Russ Krasnoff (The Soloist) — come together for an animated discussion and Q&A session about what’s in store for viewers this fall! Indigo Ballroom, Hilton San Diego Bayfront
2:15-3:15 Knights of Badassdom— In this humorous fantasy adventure from IndieVest Pictures, Joe (Ryan Kwanten) is a heavy metal rocker who’s just gone through a painful breakup with his girlfriend, Beth (Margarita Levieva). His concerned roommates (Steve Zahn, Peter Dinklage) kidnap him to their LARP (Live Action Role Playing) gathering, where he enters a realm of fantasy escapism in which pretend knights, elves, and barbarians clash with foam weaponry on a mock battlefield. When Joe’s “sorcerer” roommate (Zahn) inadvertently summons a deadly succubus that takes Beth’s seductive form, bloody reality crashes down on their fantasy world. Once LARPers start to turn up dead, the make-believe wizards and warriors must become the real-life heroes they have been pretending to be in order to conquer the evil that has been unleashed. The panel will include a Comic-Con exclusive trailer and a discussion/Q&A with stars Ryan Kwanten (HBO’s True Blood, Red Hill), Peter Dinklage (HBO’s Game of Thrones, Station Agent), Steve Zahn, pending availability (HBO’s Tremé, Saving Silverman), Summer Glau (Firefly, Serenity, The Sarah Connor Chronicles), Danny Pudi (NBC’s Community), Jimmi Simpson, pending availability (A&E’s Breakout Kings, Date Night), Margarita Levieva (The Lincoln Lawyer, Adventureland). and director Joe Lynch (Wrong Turn 2). Knights of Badassdom will be released in Spring 2012. Hall H
Continuing Friday’s tradition of independent movies getting into Hall H, this movie definitely has me intrigued. Great cast, prime spot on the biggest day of Comic Con, we’ll have to see.
3:00-4:00 Dark Horse: Joss Whedon— Long before signing on to helm one of the most anticipated superhero films in history, Joss Whedon rewarded fans the world over with some of the most compelling characters and plot lines in the history of comics, television, and movies. Here’s your chance to find out what he has in store for us next, including a sneak peek at the brand-new Angel & Faith and Buffy Season 9 comics, plus exciting news about Buffy digital comics! Indigo Ballroom, Hilton San Diego Bayfront
Wait, Joss Whedon, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth (read below) and more are ALL going to be at Comic Con and there isn’t anything planned for The Avengers? Yeah, I don’t believe that one bit.
3:15-4:15 Calling all Lost Fans: Once Upon a Time— Moderator Damon Lindelof (co-creator, Lost) introduces you to the magical story of two parallel worlds: one in a distant fairytale land, the other in a present-day reality. Following the exclusive screening of Once Upon a Time, join co-creators and executive producers Edward Kitsis (Lost, Tron: Legacy) and Adam Horowitz (Lost, Tron: Legacy) along with Ginnifer Goodwin (Big Love), Jennifer Morrison (House), Robert Carlyle (SGU: Stargate Universe), Lana Parrilla (24), and Josh Dallas (Thor), for a Q&A about this modern fairytale turned on its head. All attendees will get a limited-edition Comic-Con giveaway! Room 6DE
3:30-4:15 Universal Pictures: Snow White and the Huntsmen— Universal Pictures is bringing the stars and filmmakers of its epic action-adventure film based on the script Snow White and the Huntsman to Comic-Con. Scheduled to appear to discuss their roles in this breathtaking new vision of the legendary tale are Kristen Stewart (Twilight), Oscar winner Charlize Theron (Prometheus), Chris Hemsworth (Thor), and Sam Claflin (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides). Director Rupert Sanders (Halo 3 campaign) and other filmmakers will also be on hand to reveal exclusive footage. Q&A session to follow. Hall H
4:30-5:30 Further over the Rainbow: A First Look at Dorothy of Oz— Join the author and creator, Roger Baum (great grandson of L. Frank Baum), songwriter, producers, and various cast members of Summertime Entertainment’s Dorothy of Oz, as they discuss the many angles of creating the anticipated new 2012 animated musical starring Lea Michele (Glee), Megan Hilty (Wicked, Spielberg’s Smash), Martin Short (How I Met Your Mother, Frankenweenie), and Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: TNG, X-Men). Be the very first to see the footage, hear the music, and witness a surprise new casting announcement. Q&A to follow. Hall H
Look, I know this is a major motion picture, but Hall H for an animated version of The Wizard of Oz? Are you serious?
5:15-6:00 Alcatraz Pilot Screening and Q&A— Catch a special pilot screening of Alcatraz, a chilling new thriller centering on America’s most infamous prison and the mysterious return of its most notorious criminals. When an Alcatraz inmate is discovered walking the streets of present-day San Francisco — not having aged a bit since the 1960s — a sinister threat begins to unravel. Where have these prisoners been? Why are they back? After the screening, there will be a special Q&A with Alcatraz writer and executive producer Elizabeth Sarnoff (Lost) and series stars Sarah Jones (Sons of Anarchy) and Jorge Garcia (Lost). From Bonanza Productions Inc. in association with Bad Robot Productions and Warner Bros. Television, Alcatraz will air midseason on FOX. Ballroom 20
5:45-7:30 An Early Evening with Kevin Smith— You know Comic-Con is over for the night on Saturday when the fat man sings. Kevin Smith takes to the Hall H stage for his annual Q&A. Fair warning: he works bluer than Doctor Manhattan (though, unlike Doctor Manhattan, Smith will wear clothes for this performance). Hall H
6:45-7:30 Person of Interest Pilot Screening and Q&A— A peerless creative team is behind this new white-knuckle action series — including creator/executive producer Jonathan Nolan (The Dark Knight) and showrunner/executive producer Greg Plageman (Cold Case) — about an ex-CIA agent, presumed dead, who partners with a mysterious billionaire to prevent violent crimes in New York City. Join these producers plus stars Jim Caviezel (The Thin Red Line), Michael Emerson (Lost), and Taraji P. Henson (Academy Award nominee, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) for an inside look at one of the most anticipated new shows of the fall season, including an exclusive screening of the pilot episode and Q&A. From Bonanza Productions Inc. in association with Bad Robot Productions and Warner Bros. Television, Person of Interest will air Thursdays at 9/8c on CBS. Room 6BCF
This, Alcatraz, and Once Upon a Time (not to mention Chuck and others) have pretty much made Saturday more a TV day than movie day at Comic Con.
7:30-8:30 The Art of the Hollywood Movie Poster— Who are the talented artists Hollywood has tapped for the creation of some of the best movie posters in recent history? Leslie Combemale (film art expert and owner, ArtInsights Animation and Film Art Gallery) moderates a panel of artists who have worked on hundreds of movie posters and movie campaigns, including Andrea Alvin (Batman Returns, Batman Forever, Pinocchio poster artist, wife and artistic partner of late cinema art legend John Alvin), Matthew Peak (Nightmare on Elm Street poster artist, son of famed movie poster artist Bob Peak), Steve Chorney (Labyrinth, Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, Star Trek), James Goodridge (Inglorious Basterds, Harry Potter), and Lawrence Noble (The Empire Strikes Back 10th Anniversary, Time After Time, Flash Gordon). They will relay stories of the creation of some well-recognized and most appreciated movie posters, discuss the current atmosphere of the world of cinema art, and offer suggestions for artists who wish to take up the craft. This panel will include a short Q&A. Room 8
That’s Saturday’s here’s Sunday. Personally, most of these panels aren’t of interest but I’m listing them because these shows have been deemed Hall H worthy.
10:00-11:00 Glee— Creator/executive producer Ryan Murphy, creator/executive producer Brad Falchuk, and stars of Glee present a sneak peek at Glee The 3D Concert Movie featuring never-before-seen footage, behind-the-scenes secrets, and Q&A session. Hall H
11:15-12:15 Supernatural Screening and Q&A— For the first time ever, the Supernatural panel will be in Hall H! Series stars Jared Padalecki (Friday the 13th ) and Jensen Ackles (My Bloody Valentine 3D) and additional cast members and executive producers present an exclusive sneak peek at footage from the highly anticipated seventh season of this thrill-ride series. The panel will answer questions from the audience, show a portion of the special features from the upcoming Supernatural: The Complete Sixth Season DVD and Blu-ray release (in stores September 13), and give Comic-Con fans a sneak peek at Supernatural: The Anime Series, coming to DVD and Blu-ray on July 26. Supernatural airs Fridays at 9/8c on The CW and is produced by Wonderland Sound and Vision in association with Warner Bros. Television. Hall H
1:45-2:45 The Cleveland Show— The cast and executive producers offer a look at The Cleveland Show’s not-to-be-missed parody of Die Hard, followed by a discussion with panelists Mike Henry, Sanaa Lathan, Kevin Michael Richardson, Reagan Gomez, Rich Appel, and Kara Vallow. Hall H
2:00-3:00 Max Brooks: Zombie Survival 101— Max Brooks, screenwriter and author of bestselling books The Zombie Survival Guide, World War Z, and The Zombie Survival Guide: Recorded Attacks, is the world’s leading authority on the defense against a ghoulish uprising! Renowned for his campus and convention lectures nationwide, Brooks comes to Comic-Con to share his insight into the rotting minds of the undead, reveal how the Zombie Survival Guide came into existence, and field questions from zombie-phobic fans. You dare not miss this lecture — your very life may depend on it! Room 7AB
I’m interested in this just because World War Z is finally in production.
2:45-3:30 It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia— Join the hilarious cast — Rob McElhenney, Glenn Howerton, Charlie Day, Kaitlin Olson, and Danny DeVito — for a Q&A panel session. Hall H
3:30-4:00 Sons of Anarchy— Get an inside look into the world of FX’s highest-rated series ever, Sons of Anarchy, with creator Kurt Sutter (The Shield) and stars Charlie Hunnam (Children of Men), Katey Sagal (Married…With Children), and Ron Perlman (Hellboy). Hall H
4:00-5:00 Buffy the Musical— Let’s end this show with a bang! The powers that be behind Fandom Charities Inc. and Whedonopolis.com present a screening of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer musical episode “Once More With Feeling” as Comic-Con 2011′s big Hall H closing event! Many say this is the finest, funniest, most ingenious episode ever to come out of the Buffyverse. But remember, the best part of the show is up to you! This episode was made for talkin’ — back, that is — and singing and shouting and dancing in the aisles, with or without your dry cleaning! Audience participation: it isn’t just for Rocky Horror and mob riots anymore. Hall H
This event has ended Comic Con for the past few years, but it’s never been in Hall H. Until now.
So those are some of the biggest panels on the last two days. Slashfilm will be covering what we find to be worthy but, on first glimpse, I must admit it’s not too exciting. What do you all think? Why are Thursday and Friday so much better?