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July 25, 2014

Round-Up: Friday at San Diego Comic Con

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It's Friday, Comic Con-goers, and time for another programming round-up. As we mentioned in yesterday's post, conventions can be a bit daunting for first timers. To get you started, here are a few events we'd recommend checking out:

Friday

Publishers Weekly: Behind the Digital Lines - 10:00am-11:00am

As digital comics have become a driving force of the medium, more publishers and creators have launched digital first lines of comics. How do publishers and creators deal with the unique properties of the web and tablet? How do readers react? Are they an evolution from webcomics or their own medium? And how will technological evolution affect storytelling as more choices arise? PW's Calvin Reid discusses the digital evolution with the people behind digital lines, including Aces Weekly's David Lloyd, Monkeybrain's Alison Baker, New Paradigm's Brandon Perlow, Black Mask Studio's Matt Pizzolo, and Sequential's Russell Willis.

Spotlight on Neal Adams - 10:00am-11:00am
 
Comic-Con special guest Neal Adams (Batman, X-Men, Ms Mystic) is one of the living legends of comics. His impact on the Dark Knight, nearly 30 years ago, paved the way for a darker Caped Crusader, one that echoes in the movies and animated shows that we all love. From being a champion of creator rights to drawing just about every iconic comic book character who ever graced a page, Neal Adams has done it all, and he talks about some of it in this Spotlight panel!
 
 
Want to work in a fandom-related industry you're passionate about, but not sure where to start? These professional "Nerds for a Living" will discuss careers within gaming, film, comics, illustration and more. Lee Joyner (director of admissions, Cinema Makeup School), Tom Kurzanski (art director, TeeFury), Claire Hummel (production designer, HBO; concept artist, BioShock Infinite), Karen Hallion (artist and illustrator), Brad Herman (lead product designer, DreamWorks Animation), and Pat Loika (Loikamania Podcast) will share their career-building experiences. Topics include training, online resources, networking, and tactics to use (and avoid) for breaking into your dream industry. Moderated by Wendy Buske (marketing director, Nerd For A Living). This panel will conclude with an audience Q&A.
 
 
For the first time, Lucasfilm has opened its Archives to present comprehensive storyboards for the original Star Wars trilogy-the world-changing A New Hope and its operatic sequels, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi-as well as never-before-published art from early conceptual and deleted scenes, in a new book from Abrams: Star Wars Storyboards: The Original Trilogy. Former ILM art director Joe Johnston will discuss the newest addition to the Abrams Star Wars Library and the singular experience of creating the iconic trilogy's storyboards with his stellar art department team. Johnston won an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects for his work on Raiders of the Lost Ark and has directedHoney, I Shrunk the Kids, The Rocketeer, Jumanji, Jurassic Park III, Hidalgo, and Captain America: The First Avenger. Moderated by Lucasfilm editor J. W. Rinzler.
 
 
Graphic novels are often associated with violence and aggression. They can, however, be used to help kids gain a greater understanding of the often violent world around them, and they can often be used to defuse anger. Finally, they can be used to teach history, social studies, and social organization. This panel of educators, authors, and artists will show you how. They'll discuss the intertwining history of comics, violence, and censorship and provide teachers with classroom tools to integrate incredible graphic novels within language arts, social studies and science, effectively meeting Common Core State Standards while addressing ever-present resistance to the graphic text artform. Panelists include Meryl Jaffe, Betsy Gomez, Matt Holm, and Jennifer L. Holm.
 
 
Comic-Con special guest Veronica Roth, author of FOUR: A Divergent Collection, joins authors Walter Jury, Leigh Bardugo and Laini Taylor as they divulge what led them on the road to writerdom. From books to movies to comics and more, what are these authors geeking out about? Hear about their literary muses, their author crushes, and all things awe-worthy that inspire them to write the books they write. Moderator Aaron Hartzler will coax the most titillating answers out of these panelists as they dish on their evolutions and revolutions.
 
 
Based on the bestselling fantasy book series A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin, HBO's Game of Thrones concluded its 10-episode fourth season in June and will begin filming its fifth season this summer. The series, executive produced and written by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, is an epic story of treachery and nobility, set on the continent of Westeros, where summers and winters can last years. Featured cast include (in alphabetical order) Gwendoline Christie as Brienne of Tarth, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as Jaime Lannister, Natalie Dormer as Margaery Baratheon, Kit Harington as Jon Snow, Rose Leslie as Ygritte, Rory McCann as Sandor Clegane ("The Hound"), Pedro Pascal as Oberyn Martell, Sophie Turner as Sansa Stark, and Maisie Williams as Arya Stark.
 
 
Comic-Con special guest Brian K. Vaughan, the Eisner Award-winning co-creator of Saga, Y: The Last Man, Ex Machina and Runaways, takes the stage for no-holds-barred Q&A session about writing, Image Comics, his time in the Hollywood trenches, gin, his new pay-what-you-want digital comics initiative PanelSyndicate.com, money, and just about anything else YOU feel like asking.
 
Outlander - 2:15pm-3:15pm
Starz presents its highly anticipated new TV series Outlander with writer/executive producer Ronald D. Moore, author Diana Gabaldon, and cast members from the series, including Caitriona Balfe, Sam Heughan, Tobias Menzies, Graham McTavish, and Lotte Verbeek.
 
 
Marshall Vandruff (MarshallArt.com) will present over a hundred slides of Heinrich Kley's drawings to showcase his virtuoso skills. Kley's character design, knowledge of anatomy, mastery of form and movement, and wild pen & ink technique have inspired artists for the past 100 years. Marshall will explain the training involved for today's artists who want to apply these classic disciplines and standards to their work in any medium.
 
 
Reading With Pictures provides you with the latest research and proven practical strategies for using comics and graphic novels in your classroom or library. Josh Elder (founder of Reading With Pictures) moderates a panel of experts that includes Dr. Katie Monnin (associate professor of literacy, University of North Florida), Jeff Barbanell (co-founder, Scholastic Innovations), Andrea Shockling (Comics Therapy), David Cutler (founder, SpinEdu), Andrea Colvin (VP of content, Andrews McMeel Publishing), and Tracy Edmunds (curriculum director, Reading With Pictures).
 
 
Michael Cho and his four-time Eisner Award-winning editor Chip Kidd talk about comics and the making of graphic novels, specifically Michael Cho's upcoming debut, Shoplifter (Pantheon Books, Sept. 2). Shoplifter tells the story of a young woman's search for meaning, happiness, and self-fulfillment as she works as a millennial urban professional. She dabbles in small time shoplifting as a means of coming to terms with her conflicting emotions. Cho is an illustrator, cartoonist, and writer based in Toronto. Kidd is designer and author of Batman: Animated, Peanuts: The Art of Charles M. Schulz, and Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross.
 
 
Archer Screening and Q&A - 5:00pm-6:00pm
 
The popular animated comedy revolves around the International Secret Intelligence Service (ISIS) and its employees who use every covert operation and global crisis as another excuse to undermine, sabotage and betray each other for personal gain. See an exclusive screening of an original short animation piece created specifically for SDCC, plus the upcoming never-before-seen season 6 premiere episode. Then join the voice cast of H. Jon Benjamin (Bob's Burgers), Aisha Tyler (The Talk), Chris Parnell (21 Jump Street), Judy Greer (Arrested Development), Amber Nash (Frisky Dingo), and Lucky Yates (Good Eats), plus creator Adam Reed (Sealab 2021) and co-executive producer Casey Willis as they discuss bringing this animated series to life.
 
 
Your project is going to make millions of dollars-but you have to sign this contract first-yikes! Andy Schmidt (Comics Experience, Marvel, IDW Publishing) and Joe Sergi, attorney and author of Comic Book Law: Cautionary Tales for the Comic Book Creator, offer an in-depth look at comics contracts. If you want to work in the entertainment industry-especially publishing-you can't afford to miss this panel!
 
Neil Gaiman Documentary - 7:00pm-8:00pm
 
Neil Gaiman is one of our most beloved modern storytellers, crafting amazing fantasy worlds across comics, novels, films, and music. But what is his story? This new documentary takes you along for the ride on Neil's record-setting 2013 signing tour, and explores a life as fantastical as one of his stories. Filmmakers Patrick Meaney (Grant Morrison: Talking With Gods) and Jordan Rennert (Warren Ellis: Captured Ghosts), Neil's "Pepper Potts" Cat Mihos, and a special guest present an exclusive first look at the film.
 
 
The 26th annual Eisner Awards (the "Oscars" of the comics industry) honor comics creators and works in 30 categories. Presenters will include British talk show host/comics writer Jonathan Ross, actor/screenwriter/comedian Thomas Lennon (Reno 911, Balls of Fury), actor/comedian Orlando Jones (Sleepy Hollow, The MAD Show), actress Kelly Hu (Arrow, Warehouse 13), nominee Reginald Hudlin (writer, Black Panther; producer, Django Unchained), Belgian graphic novelists Benoît Peeters and François Schuiten (Obscure Cities series), nominees Matt Fraction (Hawkeye, Sex Criminals) and Kelly DeConnick (Pretty Deadly, Captain Marvel), Hall of Fame cartoonist Sergio Aragonés (Groo, MAD), writer/artist Bill Morrison (Bongo Comics), writer/artist nominee Terry Moore (Rachel Rising, Strangers in Paradise) and voice actors Phil LaMarr (Samurai Jack, Justice League Unlimited, MADtv) and Vanessa Marshall (Young Justice, Spectacular Spider-Man), plus some special surprises! Other prestigious awards to be given out include the Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award, the Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award, the Bill Finger Award for Excellence in Comics Writing, and the Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award
 
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We can provide the guide, but navigating the ins and outs of the convention is up to you, brave traveler. Good luck, and enjoy!