The weekend of April 26 - 28 marked the 2013 edition (and fourth consecutive year) of Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo, also known as C2E2. This event organized by the same individuals that put on New York Comic Con and PAX, is a convention spanning the latest and greatest from the worlds of comics, movies, television, toys, anime, manga and video games.
Once again I attended this great (and growing) event and have brought back some pictures and video to share with everyone here. Unfortunately, my coverage isn't as good as last years since I was attending the con on crutches which ended making things a bit problematic but still incredibly enjoyable.
Bringing the best of popular culture to Downtown Chicago, C2E2’s show floor is packed with hundreds of exhibitors, panels and autograph sessions giving fans a chance to interact with their favorite creators and screening rooms featuring sneak peeks at films and television shows months before they hit either the big or small screen!
The programming was solid as ever this year resulting in panel after panel (both fan run and celeb oriented) to be filled to capacity.
Several original costumes from The Hunger Games were on display right as you entered the show floor. These costumes will be auctioned off in October at New York Comic Con.
I wish I had put something in this pic to give a size of scale because wow JLaw's waist is tiny
And of course everyone's favorite part of conventions... costumes costumes costumes!
Apparently someone just abandoned their Godzilla costume
Also Batman gives no fucks
I saw these kids while in line for Natalie Dormer (who is beyond lovely). Neither of them knew each other and just happened to cross each others path. What happened next was a stand off that involved the little boy trying his hardest not to blink.
I arrived at the convention late on Friday due to work / traffic so the only panel that I was able to attend was Sam Huntington's.
Sam, who currently stars on the SyFy adaptation of Being Human was very engaging. The first questions were about the next season of Being Human (which won't hit SyFy until January of 2014). Sam said that there are plenty of great surprises coming up that will blow people's minds in addition to the fact that he will also have more nude scenes than he would care for.
Sam responds to a fan question about liking horror and mentions that season four of Being Human will be scary
It also wasn't long before someone brought up Sam's feature film debut Jungle 2 Jungle. Sam mentioned that he recently watched the movie with his four year old son who was initially confused thinking that he had been lied to and that Tim Allen was his actual grandpa but ultimately ended up loving it and since has pretended he starred in a sequel and has been practicing with toy bows and arrows.
Sam talked about his favorite role was Jimmy Olsen even though his part wasn't that big in the film because he fanboys Superman and became overwhelmed a few times on set.
The first panel I went to on Saturday morning was Patton Oswalt's. The room filled up pretty quickly. We got to the queue about an hour early and as you can see we were seated pretty far in the back. Patton was hilarious and talked many different topics including his recent appearance from Parks & Rec, the new Star Wars film, Iron Man 3 redefining the comic book movie and taking a break from comedy tours so he can spend more time with his four year old daughter.
Patton mentioned he thinks that Star Wars is in good hands with Disney and went on about how George Lucas turned crazy.
How Return of the Jedi should have started.
A fan asked Patton to select five characters to make up his dream superhero team. No lie, I was pretty thrilled at the Runaways mention and even more pleased when Patton mentioned his dream project would be to develop Runaways as a series for HBO.
When asked Phantom Menace or Spider-Man 3 Patton responded, "Herpes or gonorrhea?"
On Saturday night I also had a ticket to the sold-out Evening With Kevin Smith panel. The three hour panel began with Kevin reading out some tweets that people had sent out about the convention earlier that night. Two highlights included, "Overheard in line for Kevin Smith, Google Aquatic Ape Theory" and "Make them play The Lion King song again!" (a cover of I Just Can't Wait To Be King had been playing prior to the start of the panel)
Kevin takes a picture with a fan for his birthday
For anyone that has never seen Kevin speak before I recommend it either in person or via one of the Evening With Kevin Smith releases. As anyone who has seen him speak might have expected during the three hour Q&A he answered a total of six questions as they all led into stories.
Kevin talked about his appearance on King of the Nerds - including Genevieve's breakdown after which he wasn't aware of until after the episode aired - and the rise in films and television being made for more niche audiences.
His reality show Comic Book Men came up as well. Kevin mentioned how both the show and Smodcast ending up helping Bryan Johnson fight depression. He also recommended that everyone just get out there and make a podcast even if it's just you rambling to yourself because it's cathartic and who knows how much longer it will be something that you can make for free and currently has no regulations as far as content and censorship are concerned.
A fan asked Kevin if he would rather lose the ability to speak or to come
The event also contained a few updates on some upcoming projects. Jay and Silent Bob's Super Groovy Cartoon Movie is currently on tour similar to the Red State road show. Kevin has finished over 100 pages of the Clerks 3 screenplay and is hoping that he will be able to release it independently. His Hit Something project, which has been described as a love letter to hockey and Canada, is no longer going to be split into two full length features but is currently being shopped around as a mini-series (after the suggestion of Jason Mewes)
On Sunday I attended R.L. Stine's panel. I have to admit this was something that I was looking forward to and was not disappointed in the slightest. I grew up a child of Goosebumps and Fear Street so it was pretty amazing to see someone who had such an influence on me growing up. Stine opened the panel by saying he decided to do the convention after a signing in New York a few weeks back where someone mentioned they were shocked he was there because they thought he had died. Ouch. :-X
Stine talked about the majority of his fan mail reading the same way. He also went on to say that he works differently from most authors since he doesn't really work with a concept so much as he comes up with a title that he thinks is interesting and then tries to develop a story around that.
When asked how he dealt with writer's block he responded that he simply didn't have time for it as when he started he had to write one Fear Street and one Goosebumps book a month. He also said that he doesn't get scared by movies or books and hadn't been scared by anything since he was a child. When asked about bringing horror to kids he said that he believes children are much smarter than people give them credit for and he always made it clear that his stories were in a world of fantasy and real world issues were intentionally left out of them.
A fan reads a letter she always wanted to send
The room was standing room only and filled with fans of all ages. There were several people in the room who teared up on occasion mentioning how much of an impact that he had on their lives and how he was the reason that they started reading. Stine also mentioned that he loves Twitter because the people that use it and contact them are "his original kids" and how they are still very special to him.
Dance off for swag at the Marvel booth
Just some of the craziness that was people trying to get any free item they could from the Marvel booth
Season four Face Off winner (and Chicago native) Anthony Kosar. Anthony's table was pretty much consistently busy as he did free signings and sketches for fans. He was incredibly pleasant (and not to mention talented as he was the redeeming factor of the past season and the obvious winner from the first episode) and also had information out about his Chicagoland studio and and FX classes.
Unfortunately this year we weren't allowed to take pictures of anyone as they were signing even from far away without a flash so this was the only picture (featuring Game of Throne's James Cosmo) that I was able to get. The Game of Thrones panel maxed out as well so I was not able to get pics or reports. I did get the chance to speak to Natalie Dormer. She talked about it being her first convention and how lovely all the fans were and how great it was to get to interact with everyone (she had full conversations with every person that approached her table and was overall awesome) and was looking forward to doing more in the future.
Source: Me, my friend and our cameras.
No fan signs this time unfortunately. Hopefully next year when I'm not as broken. Until then, enjoy!