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Comic-Con: End of Day 1 Hall H Recap

Day 1 inside Hall H began with the shrieks and squeals of thousands of Twi-hards and ended with the laughter and copious amount of F-bombs shared between directors Guillermo del Toro and Jon Favreau. But in between those two bookends was a day packed with never-before-seen footage, surprise guests and actors making their Comic-Con debut. Let's take a look…

Kristen Stewart at Comic-Con for Breaking Dawn panel.The Twilight gang got things started, showcasing a pair of new clips for their hoard of devoted fans, some who had camped outside Hall H since Monday. Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson (sporting a funky haircut), Taylor Lautner, Nikki Reed, Ashley Greene, Elizabeth Reaser and Julia Jones answered questions ranging from their favorite book (K-Stew's is New Moon) to what they'll miss now that the movie has finished shooting. (Read the full Breaking Dawn Hall H recap and watch exclusive Breaking Dawn cast interviews.)
As the Twilight cast and fans exited, we got a surprise cameo appearance from filmmaker Morgan Spurlock who walked on stage and introduced the trailer for his upcoming documentary Comic-Con: Episode 4, which was greeted with light applause and laughter (probably because the room was still clearing out).
From there we transitioned to a behind-the-scenes look at a pair of upcoming Aardman Animations productions: Pirates! A Band of Misfits and Arthur Christmas. Director Peter Lord of Wallace and Gromit fame made his Comic-Con debut, introducing a string of clips and behind-the-scenes clips for The Pirates! The director took time to run through his cast of main characters and talk about the voices behind them, which include Hugh Grant, Martin Freeman, Salma Hayek, Jeremy Piven, David Tennant and Imelda Staunton. As if the cast wasn't impressive enough, the footage was presented in RealD 3D and was well done.
For Arthur Christmas, we got a look at two clips, also in 3D. The first clip featured James McAvoy's title character snooping on an army of elves in training. While the clip received a lukewarm reaction, the second clip proved more entertaining. The scene featured Santa Claus on his usual Christmas mission to deliver toys when he becomes trapped in a little boy's room. The little boy awakes thinking he hears Santa, who hides at the foot of the bed, his head pressed against the Christmas present. Little does Santa know, he's started to activate a very loud toy. The elves that accompany St. Nick must then figure out a way to get their boss out of the room without setting the toy off or be seen by the little boy.
PeeWee Herman at Comic-Con.Following a brief break, we took a trip back into the '80s as PeeWee Herman came out on the stage in easily one of the funniest panel discussions of the day. Dressed in his trademark gray suit and red bowtie, PeeWee said the next PeeWee's Big Adventure movie would be a road trip produced by Judd Apatow and is still on schedule. He expressed good-natured disbelief at the fact that Apatow wanted to do a movie with him.
As PeeWee exited, two highly anticipated movies made their entrance into Hall H. Guillermo del Toro was joined by Guy Pearce and director Troy Nixey for Don't Be Afraid of the Dark while Nicolas Winding Refn was joined by Carey Mulligan and Ron Perlman for Drive. While the two directors dominated the panel, praising each other's work, they also talked about filmmaking in general. Refn put it best when he said, "Directing is easy. Directing is inspiring others to do their best and then putting your name on it." Del Toro kept the audience laughing and talked about monsters in his movies being an allegory to human imperfection. "Monsters are a living, breathing 'f**k you' to a society that wants you to be skinny, pretty, smiley, perfect."
We were treated not only to an awesome trailer for Drive, but also an equally delicious clip featuring Ryan Gosling, Mulligan and bad guy Chris Muto in an elevator. The scene starts out with Muto in an elevator wearing an expensive suit. Gosling and Mulligan walk in and Gosling spots a gun inside Muto's jacket. He reaches back to Mulligan, turn and gives her a long, deep kiss and then, in a flash, he blocks a punch from Muto and slams his head into the elevator wall. Muto stumbles to the ground where Gosling then proceeds to stomp his head in. We even get a gruesome shot of Gosling's foot smashing through Muto's skull. When the lights came back up, the Hall H crowd popped with one of the loudest applauses of the day.
Fox was next up and while we knew what movies they would be presenting, no one really knew what exactly they had planned. LOST writer Damon Lindelof moderated the presentation and introduced the beautiful Charlize Theron to the Hall H crowd. The two bantered a bit and then we got our first look at Prometheus. The footage gave the audience a glimpse of what direction director Ridley Scott was taking this Aliens kinda-sorta-prequel. Amid the quickly edited mish-mash of images, one thing is for sure; Scott is taking no prisoners with this movie and is going big and in 3D. After the lights came back up, Theron introduced Scott who appeared on the giant screen via satellite from Iceland where he is currently shooting. The director talked about the concepts behind the movie, how much he loved shooting in 3D and introduced a surprise guest. (Read the full Fox Hall H recap).
As Theron exited the stage, we then got our first look at sci-fi action flick In Time starring Justin Timberlake and Amanda Seyfried. The duo then appeared on stage briefly before it was time to move on to the Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Andy Serkis, who plays the lead chimpanzee Caesar, introduced a number of clips which seemed to be Fox's way of saying, "Look how awesome WETA's CGI chimps look!"
Robert RodriguezMuch of the Hall H crowd began filtering out once the Fox panel was done. For those who stuck around, they got a glimpse at a few upcoming Robert Rodriguez projects. The director first gave an update on a couple of his more high-profile projects. First, he said that Spy Kids 4 will not only be in 3D, but will also feature a Smell-o-Vision type attraction where audience members will receive a small piece of paper with numbers. When the number appears on-screen during the movie, the audience scratches the number on the paper to get the smell. Rodriguez scratched the first number and said it smelled like bacon, but that some of the other numbers wouldn't smell that great.
We then got an update on Sin City 2, which has long been gestating in the rumor mill. Rodriguez said that a script had been turned in featuring a pair of new Frank Miller stories with a wrap-around plot. He said that the movie could go into production as early as this year and that he would like to shoot it in 3D because, "I have some neat ideas for the technology and the story."
From there, the director introduced his new production company, Quick Draw Productions and the first project that it would be taking on – a feature film adaptation of the sci-fi fantasy magazine, Heavy Metal. He then issued an assignment to Hall H patrons to submit story ideas, worlds and characters for the movie. He then gave out the website where those interested could get more info.
Finally, Rodriguez announced that he had teamed up with Frank Frazetta Properties in hopes of adapting the recently-deceased artists' paintings into feature films, the first of which will be Fire and Ice.
The Hall H events closed with Guillermo del Toro returning to the stage with Jon Favreau. The directors talked about Magic Kingdom, Haunted Mansion and Cowboys and Aliens. Favreau opened the event saying he was worried that del Toro wouldn't be able to make it to Comic-Con because of a bulging disc, something del Toro addressed in an earlier panel. Del Toro talked about how they both came from blue-collar families, how they're each developing  Disney-related movies, and their use of visual effects.
Favreau also recounted a tale of when he and Edgar Wright visited del Toro's house and being surprised because he has a bunch of separate houses to store his original artwork, memorabilia, etc., to which del Toro quipped, "I'm a creepy motherf**ker."
We were then treated to an extended clip of Cowboys and Aliens (actually the same one that screened at WonderCon) and Favreau said that people either loved the trailer and the concept or they would find it too unbelievable. "But trucks turning into robots is perfectly fine," Favreau joked.
Del Toro and Refn at Comic-Con.
Del Toro then addressed the slew of projects he's attached to, including Haunted Mansion, which he said was currently on its second or third script. He was hesitant to give details regarding Pacific Rim before Friday's panel, but said it was the most fun he's had on a movie and that he spends the entire day designing, "gigantic f**king monsters." Favreau jumped into say that the artwork he had seen for Rim looks amazing.
Q&A then opened up and we got some choice scoops. Del Toro said that his Haunted Mansion would be really scary and he wouldn't be casting a comedian in the lead (ouch, Eddie Murphy). Regarding At the Mountains of the Madness, del Toro said that he still controlled the rights and that if fans emailed him at, sometimes he answers and lets people come visit on the set. Favreau announced that he had filmed a cameo in John Carter, playing Thark.

Time ran out and the first day of Hall H activities came to a close. As if Day One wasn't packed and busy enough, Friday promises to be huge. Steven Spielberg will kick things off making his Comic-Con debut as well as a look at projects from Relativity, Screen Gems, Dreamworks' Fright Night and the biggest event of the day – Sony Pictures panel featuring Total Recall, 30 Minutes or Less, Ghost Rider 2 and The Amazing Spider-Man.

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Next Article by Lizerne Guiting

Comic-Con: Exclusive 'Breaking Dawn' Video Interviews with Ashley Greene, Nikki Reed, Julia Jones, Elizabeth Reaser, Bill Condon and BooBoo Stewart

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