The show goes on…
So, I had initially intended to post an article a day to recap my experience this year, but after 12+ hour days of walking the convention it was either spend the hour it takes to put together each article (and accompanying photos) or use that extra time to sleep. Sleep won. So, now that the con is over for the most part — I’ve decided to combine my remaining reporting into one post. There will be a separate post for the photos.
Geeks on Parade…
Day 2 of DragonCon meant waking bright and early followed by a mad rush to secure a spot along downtown Peachtree Street. The DragonCon costume parade is everyone’s best chance at seeing many of the cosplaying attendees all in one place.
Having travelled to several other conventions across the country, I have to say that I’ve yet to visit a con that has quite as large of a costumed turnout. Many of D*C cosplayers usually bring a costume for each day they’re here so, it literally makes it worth it to roam the halls each day.
This years parade had a respectable turnout. The photo gallery will be up sometime tomorrow with high res photos, but you can check the photos out on our facebook page right now. Camera issue unfortunately prevented me from doing anymore indoor photos so, I missed out on many of the more “interesting” wear. Dragon*Con is known for costumes of the more risque kind. The kind of costumes that won’t be allowed in the parade. We’ll make up for it next year.
Also on Day 2 was Lance Henriksen who played host to his own Q&A panel where he answered questions about his career and philosophy on life. It’s the first I’ve listened to him talk at length. I came away impressed with him. He appears to be a thruthfully no BS, what you see is what you get kind of guy.
Being (myself) a person who likes to be as blunt and honest about things, it was a pleasure to hear Henriksen give very candid answers to every question that was asked. It’s always great when stars avoid sugar coating their experiences as it gives aspiring professionals a more realistic idea of what it’s really like to live in their shoes.
No real news to report from this panel. It was mainly anecdotes from films past. He did mention that he and a group of fans are trying to resurrect the tv show Millenium. Show runner Chris Carter (X-Files) is also involved. Not sure if the chances have increased any, but I’m always happy to see the work of either on the screen — large or small.
Actors in attendance for this were Sam Witwer (Davis Bloome/Doomsday), Laura Vandervoort (Kara/Super girl), Michael Rosenbaum (Lex Luthor), and James Marsters (Brainiac).
This was an interesting panel. Interesting because, more so than any other panel I went to, the actors personalities aren’t a whole lot like the characters they play. Vandervoort, for example, is quite the smart ass. The kind that corrects you when you pronounce something wrong or misspeak (not in a helpful way). Far from the sweet girl next door that she usually gets cast as. Sam Witwer is actually a bit of a nerd. Also, not too expected. He has a far livelier personality than I expected considering the darker roles he seems to get cast in. Rosenbaum also is quite different. He’s a bit of a goof ball in real life. Most interesting of all was Clark Kent himself Tom Welling, who although he wasn’t in attendance, was mentioned quite a bit by the rest of the cast. Apparently in real life Welling has a really filthy mind. He cracks dirty (really dirty) jokes on set, the kind that apparently embarrassed his co-workers all the time. He also had the habit of shooting scenes with the rest of the cast while in nothing but his underwear from the waste down. Usually during the filming of dramatic scenes.
Cast in attendance for this were Jim Parrack (Hoyt), Kristin Bauer (Pam), Joe Manganiello (Alcide), Denis O’Hare (Russell Edgington), and author/creator of the books that inspired True Blood, Charlaine Harris.
This panel of people was in comparison to the Smallville folks actually quite alot like the characters they play; minus the mutant powers. Jim Parrack is quite spiritual, a little freakishly so. He was also quite intimidating. I think he smiled once during the entire panel and it happened so quick I couldn’t even get a shot of it. Kristin is a neurotic in real life, something that is quite evident and helpful to the crazy vampire character she plays on the show. Joe comes from a blue collar background and has worked as a roadie and construction guy up until right before getting the True Blood role in fact. Denis is thankfully not exactly like Edgington, but he is quite well read and exudes experience which clearly helped with playing a vampire who’s been around since before the pyramids were conceived.
No news here either, but it was an interesting panel discussion about acting and inspiration. Any aspiring actors would have loved the great insight. Oh, and by the by…Charlaine Harris is a hoot. The stereotype of stereotypes of southern women. I’ll go to any panel she’s on from here till eternity. A lot of fun to listen to.
Cast in attendance for this were Wil Wheaton (Dr. Isaac Parrish), Colin Ferguson (Sheriff Jack Carter), Jordan Hinson (Zoe Carter), Chris Gauthier (Vincent), and science advisor to the show, Kevin R. Grazier.
This was an emotional panel. It actually ended with Wil Wheaton breaking down as he lamented the recent cancellation of the show. They filmed their last episode last week. Listening to the cast talk about each other and their time on the show, it was evident that everyone had become a genuine family by the end. Even the aforementioned Wil who had only just joined the show had nothing, but good things to say about his experience. Wil has been acting since he was 8 years old, known for his roles in TV shows like Star Trek TNG and movies like Stand By Me. It meant a lot to hear that this was the most memorable experience of his career.
The panel discussion was full of little anecdotes about working on the show. Some that change the way you’ll see certain episodes going forward. For example, Wil let it be known that he thinks farts and farting is the most awesome thing. He frequently would let out farts on enclosed sets just to see how uncomfortable he could make people. He described an upcoming episode of the show (the last episode of the series, I believe) where he let out a fart inside the Cafe Diem set while they were filming an important and pivotal emotional scene. All the actors stayed in character, but they were convinced that the fart had been let out by one of the new and very attractive female extras. Wil eventually confessed and apologized for his shenanigans. Oh, did I mention that the Cafe Diem set had very poor ventilation and frequently got very hot. Not the best place to let out a deadly fart.
Other highlights of the panel included a funny moment where Wil Wheaton mentioned that he was disappointed at not having been asked (yet) by a fan, to sign their boobs. Cast mate Colin Ferguson then proceeded to take off his shirt and demand an autograph on his chest. Wheaton, with some hesitation, obliged and Colin returned to his seat; triumphant.
Another funny bit was when the cast mentioned Neil Grayston (Douglas Fargo) who was in attendance at last years DragonCon, but didn’t make it out this time. They tried to call him live, but were unable to reach him. Colin thought it a good idea to leave him a voicemail and proceeded to hold the phone up to the mic. Unfortunately Neil’s home voice message is a very brief direction that includes his personal cell number which was almost played live to the panel audience. Luckily Colin yanked his phone from the mic just in time. We only heard the first few digits.
Only one bit of news at this panel. A couple of the original cast members will be returning to the show soon. No names were given, but my money is on Matt Frewer (Jim Taggart) and possibly Ed Quinn (Nathan Stark) since this is a different timeline, after all.
Cast members Amanda Tapping (Dr. Helen Magnus), Robin Dunne (Dr. Will Zimmerman), and Chris Heyerdahl (John Druitt, Biggie) were in attendance.
All enjoyed ribbing each other, but all in good fun. It was clear that they have fun working together. SciFi (I abhor that other spelling) has renewed the show for another season so, a few hints were given as to what to look forward to. One of those things is a return of Druitt, who had left the show last season. Chris plays both the bigfoot character and Druitt, aka Jack The Ripper.
Someone in the audience asked Amanda if there were any romantic entanglements to be expected for her character in the future. Amanda says that she gets to kiss two different characters in the next season. One of the kisses was unscripted and the other was as written. Both have different emotional connotations. One being of the romantic kind, the other not so much.
What to do with the time…
The rest of our time was at the con was spent catching up and meeting friends of the site. Old and new. Good to see some of you. We’ll have to do something more planned and formal next time. So, that was DragonCon in a nutshell. Much was on offer, but as most of these large conventions go, you can only see and do so much. I’m told I missed what was an excellent The Walking Dead panel, a Star Wars panel with Carrie Fisher and others. I didn’t make it to the Ralph Bakshi or Bernie Wrightson panels, and a number of other events and gatherings that occurred throughout the weekend. Until next year.