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Comic-Con Day 1: Hall H, from 'Megamind' to 'Tron' to 'Scott Pilgrim'

Day 1 at Comic-Con got off to a frenzied start as rumor hit the streets that Brad Pitt would be making an appearance. Sadly, he was a no-show, apparently staying back to watch the kids so wife Angelina Jolie could promote Salt. Instead, his costars in Dreamworks’ animated Megamind, Will Ferrell, Tina Fey and Jonah Hill, were on hand in Hall H. Ferrell voices a down-and-out alien super villain, so in true Ferrell style he showed up in character, with a bright blue face and a mega headpiece. Who have been their biggest menaces over the years? Ferrell called out Charlize Theron, saying he didn’t want to get into it but there was “bad blood” there. Tina Fey named Betty White, and Hill named…Mel Gibson’s girlfriend. As discussion flourished on the Mel scandal, Hill concluded by saying, “I don’t support him but I do think Jews killed Jesus.”

Olivia Wilde, Garrett Hedlund and Jeff BridgesTalk about getting the crowd going!  Up next: Tron: Legacy. Jeff Bridges, Olivia Wilde, Garrett Hedlund and director Joseph Kosinski greeted screaming fans and surprised the audience by asking them to follow a series of steps in order to be part of the film. The task at hand: the audience had to meticulously execute numerous prompts—screaming in a clear unified voice (Disk! Wars!, Rinz! Ler!, Dee! Rez!).  If they recorded clear takes, the director promised to use it on the final movie cut. Fans were also treated to eight minutes of footage with spectacular scenes and a glimpse of Jeff Bridges playing an avatar who looks like a 35-year-old version of Kevin Flynn—yes, Bridges goes back in time, thanks to modern technology.

Before long, the sexy Angelina Jolie took center stage. Director Phillip Noyce began by saying it was Jolie’s “zest for action and violence” that allowed the team to take her ideas and develop a character that transcends gender. Jolie’s character Evelyn Salt, a CIA officer accused of being a Russian spy, was originally written for Tom Cruise. But Jolie took ownership and performed all her stunts. At the end of the day, says Jolie, “It was about hand-to-hand combat—getting down and dirty and just punching each other.”
 
Guillermo del Toro made a surprise appearance and overjoyed audiences when he talked about his latest project – Haunted Mansion, inspired by the Disneyland theme park ride. The talented director of Pan’s Labyrinth and The Devil’s Backbone says this project is a dream come true. He told fans the movie will be released in 3D and his goal is to make a scary film, not a comedy.
 
Another action-packed film RED (Retired Extremely Dangerous) made its trailer debut at Comic-Con and Helen Mirren, Mary-Louise Parker, Bruce Willis, and Karl Urban made an appearance. Mirren immediately confessed to how intimidated she was to work in a different genre, especially an action movie. The film is a comic book adaptation in which Mirren, Willis, John Malkovich and Morgan Freeman play retired CIA agents—little did they know that knowing too much would make them prime targets, and now the agency they once worked for is out to kill them.  Side note: Parker couldn’t keep a straight face as she talked about Alec Baldwin’s advice to her: “look like you have to pee and it will make it seem as if you’re in danger.”
 
A roaring, testosterone-driven crowd welcomed the cast of The Expendables, an old-school badass return to the ‘80s that makes you want to hit the gym. Terry Crews entered Hall H by ripping off his shirt, followed by Steven Austin, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Bruce Willis and Sylvester Stallone. These deadly human machines brought intense fighting sequences to life with a few injuries along the way. Stallone got his neck broken by Austin, which resulted in three screws to the head! Ouch! In Austin’s defense, he says, “If the writer, director and producer tell you to beat him…you kick the sh*t out of him.” For die-hard action movie fans: the cast of the The Expendables agrees that the film is a sincere love letter dedicated to all of you.
 
Jamming to crazy beats, the cast of Scott Pilgrim vs. the World rocked their way into Hall H at the end of the day. The increasingly unpredictable Michael Cera stepped up to the mic in a Captain America costume. Besides the crazy gear, Cera was in an oddly sarcastic mood, addressing questions with off –the-wall answers. Jason Schwartzman chimed in and revealed his favorite scene in the film, “I love the shower scene with Michael Cera. The training paid off.” Cera added, “We shot it over two weeks, it was challenging but great.” The big surprise came when director Edgar Wright announced he would take a select few to a private screening of the film.
 
And so ends Day 1 in Hall H…stay tuned for more from Day 2.

 

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Day 77: 'Scott Pilgrim vs. the World'

Day 77: 'Scott Pilgrim vs. the World'

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