Comic-Con 2011: UNDERWORLD: AWAKENING Panel Recap

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The latest installment in the Underworld franchise, titled Underworld: Awakening, is headed to theaters soon and we got our first look at the film at today’s panel in Hall H. The 3D action-horror film stars Kate Beckinsale, with a script by franchise staple Len Wiseman. Hit the jump for my full recap of the panel, where we were treated to the first footage from the film (in 3D), a Q&A with the directors, and Wiseman addressed future entries in the Underworld franchise.

Moderator Chris Gore opened the panel by introducing directors Måns Mårlind and Björn Stein, franchise creator Len Wiseman, stars Michael Ealy, Theo James, and of course, Kate Beckinsale.

underworld-image-kate-beckinsaleStein said that they’re only about halfway through shooting but they’ve brought some footage to be screened exclusively at Comic-Con. The footage was basically a trailer, opening with Beckinsale breaking out of a glass tube-like contraption. The focus of the footage was the action and gore, but the 3D is incredibly annoying. It singles out the CG effects making everything look overtly fake. The action seems fine, with Beckinsale wielding a switchblade and slashing throats left and right. And yet again, everything is super blue.

When asked about the 3D, Marlind said they came into the film not planning to do 3D, but when they made the decision to do 3D they settled on doing it right. He said it affected everything in the filmmaking process, as they framed every shot thinking about 3D.

Boucher asked Wiseman about anime shorts he’s working on, and he responded that the short will be on the DVD and will take place across different stages and eras. He thinks the anime will be included on the box set, but he’s not entirely sure.

Wiseman was asked where he came up with the idea of Underworld, and he said it began as a werewolf concept that he was working on. He said it didn’t feel fresh enough and he infused the project with vampires which turned the film into a West Side Story featuring werewolves and vampires.

When asked about sequels, Wiseman said that they’re all interested in seeing where things go. He said he’s interested in turning it on its head and taking the characters people love and putting them into a different environment. He said he’s open to the possibility of more.

Click here for all our Comic-Con 2011 coverage.




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