PENNY DREADFUL Comic-Con Panel Recap: Showrunner John Logan and Cast Discuss FRANKENSTEIN’s Influence; the Importance of Family on TV

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Moderated enthusiastically by self-proclaimed “dreadful” and evidently devoted fan Aisha Tyler, Showtime’s Penny Dreadful closed out the festivities in Ballroom 20 on Thursday. Though some of the actors were absent, most notably Eva Green, showrunner John Logan and stars Josh Hartnett, Reeve Carney, and Harry Treadaway all spoke enthusiastically about the first season of the surprise hit show and gave hints about what will be coming in the next season.  Hit the jump for more on our Penny Dreadful Comic-Con panel recap. 

Comic-Con: The Cast and Producers of SCORPION Talk High IQ’s, The Difficulties of Being a Genius, How the Show Raises Awareness, and More

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CBS is bringing to life the incredible stories of real-life genius, Walter O’Brien and his team of equally gifted individuals, this fall with their new show, Scorpion.  After their first appearance as a cast at Comic-Con, where they also screened the pilot’s premiere, the cast and producers sat down for round table interviews with the press.

The real O’Brien, who also serves as executive producer on the show, was on hand to discuss how the idea for a series came about and what motivated him to move on with the project.  During our conversation, the cast: Robert Patrick, Elyes Gabel, and Katherine McPhee, gave us some insight into their characters and the producers (Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci) revealed what viewers can expect to see on a weekly basis and why we should all watch.  Hit the jump for more.

A MOST WANTED MAN Review

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[This is a re-post of my A Most Wanted Man review from the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.  The film opens in limited release this weekend.]

The spy thriller genre—like all genres—has its fair share of tropes and clichés.  The best entries are ones that take the foundation of the genre and expand upon it or put a new spin on the material.  Director Anton Corbijn’s latest film, A Most Wanted Man, is a solid and sharply smart entry into the spy genre that manages to explore dark characters and difficult topics while foregoing the typical action-heavy formula, sidestepping audience expectations in the process.  This is not a film that takes shortcuts just to make its audience happy, and though the final results may not delve as deep into some of its themes as one would expect, A Most Wanted Man still manages to be an involving, tense, and slow-burn thriller.  Read my full review after the jump.

Comic-Con: Will Arnett and Megan Fox Talk TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES, How April is Connected to the Turtles, Sharing the Turtles with Their Kids, More

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In Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, in theaters on August 8th, four Ninja turtles, known as Leonardo, Raphael, Michelangelo and Donatello, must leave their home in the storm sewers of Manhattan and battle evil with the help of their sensei, Master Splinter.

Following their panel in Hall H at Comic-Con (read our recap), co-stars Megan Fox (“April O’Neil”) and Will Arnett (“Vernon Fenwick”) spoke to press in a roundtable interview about how this Vernon is a supportive friend to April, how April is connected to the origin of the Turtles, which versions of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles they’ve most responded to, over the years, and sharing the Turtles with their kids.

Jacki Weaver Talks MAGIC IN THE MOONLIGHT, Working with Woody Allen, Psychic Mediums, Life After ANIMAL KINGDOM, EQUALS and More

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Jacki Weaver is killing it.  She already had a prolific career in Australia, but when Animal Kingdom came out and earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress, she quickly became a hot commodity in America.  Since, she’s delivered some chilling material in Stoker and also scored another Academy Award nomination for her work in David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook, and now she’s adding yet another noteworthy achievement to the list, appearing in a Woody Allen film.

In Magic in the Moonlight, Weaver steps in as Grace, a grieving widow who misses her husband so much that she turns to a supposed psychic medium (Emma Stone) to put them back in touch.  While in New York City promoting the film’s release, Weaver sat down with us to talk about the art of nailing a supporting character, working with Allen, whether or not she believes in psychic mediums, Drake Doremus’ upcoming film, Equals, and more.  Hit the jump to watch it all.

STAR WARS REBELS Debuts New Clips and Trailer at Comic-Con

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Last night marked the Star Wars Rebels presentation at the Gaslamp 15 during the San Diego Comic-Con during which several new clips and a new trailer debuted.  All three clips continue in the aesthetic that we’ve seen from the show so far.  So if you dug last week’s trailer, you’ll dig these.  I’m sort of surprised that this series seems to have much more narrative consistency than the prequels

The show premieres on Disney XD in the fall and also features the voices of Vanessa Marshall, David Oyelowo and Steven Jay Blum. If you’d like to catch what the show’s bringing to Comic-Con, the “Heroes of Stars Wars Rebels” panel will take place on Thursday, July 24th with executive producers Dave Filoni and Simon Kinberg as well as Prinze Jr., Marshall, Blum, Gray and Tiya Sircar.  Hit the jump for the new Star Wars Rebels Comic-Con Clips.

Comic-Con: UNDER THE DOME Cast and Producer Tease Julia and Barbie’s Relationship Troubles, Escaping the Dome, and the Difficulty of Sticking to the Show’s Timeline

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The cast of CBS’s highest rated summer drama, Under the Dome, made their appearance Thursday morning in Ballroom 20 to talk about the upcoming episodes of the show’s second season.  Following the panel, I had a chance to participate in a round table interview with the cast:  Mike Vogel, Rachelle Lefevre, Alexander Koch, Colin Ford, and Eddie Cahill as well as executive producer Neal Baer, where they discussed what’s to be expected in Chester’s Mill for the remainder of Season 2.

During the interviews, Baer and Vogel teased the possibility of escaping the dome and Lefevre told us what is happening with Julia’s status as the monarch.  The cast also discussed the difficulty of keeping up with the show’s timeline and remaining true to character.  Hit the jump for more.

Comic-Con: Megan Follows and Executive Producer Laurie McCarthy Talk REIGN, Catherine’s Quest for Power, New Characters, the Love Triangle, and More

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The CW’s historical drama, Reign, hit the stage at Comic-Con Thursday to discuss the show’s new season, set to premiere this fall.  After the panel, Megan Follows, who plays the conniving and power-driven Queen Catherine, and executive producer, Laurie McCarthy, sat down for a round table interview to talk more about the series.

During the discussion, Follows offered her opinion about Catherine and Mary’s uneasy relationship as well as why she was interested in playing such a manipulative character.  And while fans of the show are divided when it comes to Mary’s relationship with Francis and Bash, McCarthy revealed that the love triangle might be a thing of the past.  Hit the jump for the full interview.

Hasbro’s Comic-Con Breakfast Recap: Images and Video of All Things TRANSFORMERS

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Transformers has been a household name for 30 years. While there have been many iterations – the original ‘G1’ series of the ‘80s, the reedited ‘G2’ in the early ‘90s, the CGI wizardry of Beast Wars and Beast Machines, and the Japanese/American co-productionTransformers: Armada – the rise of Michael Bays tetralogy has – if you will forgive the pun – transformed and expanded the storied franchise to the point where Hasbro held its own convention-within-a-convention this morning to celebrate the many, many, many ancillary versions of the brand.

The breakfast expo included a Transformers museum, footage from multiple concurrent TV series, a build-your-own-Transformer buffet, a beta test of a free MMOG, a variety of nostalgic and ironic repaints, a preview of upcoming toy lines, a selection of non-toy ancillaries, and even a few of the brand’s shepherding executives. Hit the jump for details, pictures, and video.

KEY & PEELE Comic-Con Panel Recap: Keegan-Michael Key, Jordan Peele and Peter Atencio Debut New Sketches and Talk about Creative Process

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Key & Peele is not only one of the funniest shows on the air, but one of the best sketch comedy shows ever produced.  Naturally, I was pretty stoked to get a chance to check out the panel today at Comic-Con where stars Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele were on hand with co-executive producer/director Peter Atencio to debut some new characters and sketches from the upcoming fourth season, discuss their process for writing the show, reveal a little about what’s coming next season, upcoming projects, and a lot more.

Hit the jump to check out my full Key & Peele Comic-Con panel recap.  Key & Peele returns to Comedy Central September 24th at 10:30 PM.

Check Out the JURASSIC WORLD Car Handing Out Posters at Comic-Con

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Earlier this week we learned that this cool Jurassic World poster designed by Mark Englert would be available at Comic-Con.  The instructions said to text JURASSIC to 834567 for the poster drop information.  It turns out part of the fun was to find the silver Jurassic World Mercedes Benz on the streets of San Diego that was handing out the posters.  Hard to say for sure, but this thing looks rugged enough to handle some dinosaur action.  I would not be surprised to see it make an appearance.

Hit the jump for pictures of the car.  Chris PrattBryce Dallas HowardVincent D’OnofrioIrrfan KhanNick RobinsonTy SimpkinsJake Johnson, Omar Sy, and Judy Greer star in the sequel.  Directed by Colin Trevorrow, Jurassic World opens June 12, 2015.

TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES Comic-Con Panel Recap: Trying to Find Turtle Power in Hall H

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I want to be excited for Jonathan Liebesman’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  I loved the Turtles when I was a kid.  I collected the play sets, went to see the 90s live-action movie multiple times, and watched the animated TV show religiously.  While no remake is going to take that away, I would like to be as excited for the Turtles now as I was back then.  Unfortunately, I haven’t seen anything yet to turn me around, so I hoped today’s Comic-Con panel would do the trick.

Hit the jump for my Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Comic-Con panel recap.

IN THE HOUSE OF THE WORM Comic-Con Panel Recap: George R.R. Martin Talks Comics Fandom, GAME OF THRONES Success, and Marvel vs. DC

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In the House of the Worm Comic-Con panel recap

George R.R. Martin spoke with William Christensen, publisher and editor in chief of Avatar Press, to promote their new collaborative comic book effort, In the House of the Worm. He also discussed his history with comics fandom, how the success of the Game of Thrones TV show has changed his experiences as a fan, and weighed in on Marvel vs. DC.

The first issue of In the House of the Worm is debuting here at Comic-Con, while Avatar’s previous Martin adaptation, Skin Trade, is (appropriately?) now collected in trade format. Signed editions of both will be available at Avatar’s booth in the Exhibition Hall. Hit the jump for my In the House of the Worm Comic-Con panel recap.

Peter Jackson Could Work DOCTOR WHO Episode into His Schedule after THE HOBBIT Trilogy

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While Peter Jackson has a bit more to do this year to finish up his Hobbit trilogy with The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, he might be taking a trip to the small screen in the near future.  Which TV show, you ask? Well, Jackson has expressed an interest in directing an episode of Doctor Who.  Jackson would have done the show already if it weren’t for his insane schedule over the last few years.  Perhaps things would go a little easier if the Good Doctor took a trip to New Zealand where Jackson spends much of his time.  I jest, but according to Steven Moffat, that’s not exactly out of the question.  Hit the jump for more.

New Posters for HORNS, PENGUINS OF MADAGASCAR, and THE BOOK OF LIFE

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While San Diego Comic-Con marches on, we’ll share a few newly released posters from the following films:

  • Horns – Director Alexandre Aja’s supernatural thriller starring Daniel Radcliffe as a man who grows a pair of horns from his head after his girlfriend’s mysterious death opens on October 31st.
  • Penguins of MadagascarEric Darnell and Simon J. Smith direct Benedict CumberbatchJohn MalkovichAndy RichterTom McGrathChris MillerKen JeongAnnet Mahendru, and Peter Stormare in the spin-off film that opens November 26th.
  • The Book of Life – Writer-director Jorge R. Gutierrez’s animated journey featuring the voices of Channing Tatum, Zoe Saldana, Ron Perlman, Christina ApplegateHector ElizondoDanny TrejoIce Cube, and Placido Domingo opens in 3D on October 17th.

Hit the jump to take a look at the full-size posters along with the films’ synopses.

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