A Little Hollywood in San Diego Requires Much Patience

It’s nice to have Hollywood visit our fine city for Comic-Con 2008; Fox, Nickelodeon, CBS, NBC, Lionsgate, Disney, Warner Brothers, and other major studios were here to promote upcoming films and television shows. If you were after celebrity sightings, this was definitely the place to be this week-end.

The annual comic book convention had something for each of the 125,000 people who reportedly attended this year; Uglydolls and Yo Gabba Gabba for the younger set, plenty of blood and action figures for the older teens, and an endless collection of geeks, cooks and Storm Troopers to delight one and all.

To really take advantage of everything available for families at Comic-Con you needed the same strategy used for a theme park; a lot of patience, and to choose your lines and attractions carefully.

One of the biggest draws to the convention center was “Twilight”, a highly anticipated movie based on the teen-angst novel by Stephenie Meyer (Summit Studios, November 18th, 2008) with Robert Pattinson and Kristin Stewart. Cast members for TV shows like “Heroes”, “Pushing Daisies” and “The Big Bang Theory” were also on hand to sign autographs and pose for pictures, but actually getting these was quite a different story; long lines to get tickets entitling you to an autograph or photo, another line to get it, and pushing and cutting in line were all necessary tactics to get the coveted moment with a celeb. 

Amidst all the celebrities and movie hoopla, Paul Pope, an alternative comic book artist voted Best Writer/Artist at the 2007 Eisner Awards (the comic industry’s equivalent of the Oscars), and who’s latest graphic novel, Batman Year 100 (DC Comics) won Best Limited Series, sat quietly at the Kidrobot booth signing the Comic-Con 2008 exclusive Masked Karimbah vinyl figure he designed and sold for $125.

I asked him what he thought about Hollywood’s invasion of Comic Con, and he told me he liked the influx of money to the overall event, and added, “For me, it’s a value-neutral situation since I already work with a few Hollywood directors.” (Referring to The Amazing Adventures Of Kavalier And Clay, from Paramount Pictures).

The detraction from comic books to movies and TV shows at this year’s convention was overwhelming; the spectacular logo-ridden studio and network displays overshadowed other artist’s curtain-lined cubicles. Welsh actor Gareth David Lloyd of “Torchwood”, a Sci-Fi British TV program, calmly sat signing pictures as the crowds mobbed studio booths to get free posters or buttons to carry in the Con’s popular, larger than large bags!

When I asked Pope if the large crowds attracted by the movie studios was a good thing for his industry he replied, “Comic Con’s gotten too big. It’s like a really good [Wall Street] stock. It’s ready to split”.

We really enjoyed Comic-Wood this year. Let’s hope the San Diego Convention Center is able to keep this bit of Hollywood glamour from splitting elsewhere!


  1. Anonymous says:

    Hollywood's role in comic cons is really vital nowadays as comic cons now shouldn't be called comic cons it should be renamed to comic festivals as it is truly a feast now whenever the big outfits gets involved. I just love going to comic cons.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Comic Con is an awesome exhibition !

  3. Anonymous says:

    Being present there is a really great experience.

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