The Day the Earth Stood Still
21st Century Fox kicked off the Con officially in the infamous mega-exhibition "Hall H" with Keanu Reeves and Jennifer Connelly right off the bat at 11:30am promoting their upcoming remake of the Sci-Fi classic, The Day the Earth Stood Still. Typically housing the biggest and most popular events in the Con, the line for "Hall H" stretches almost always stretches outside and around the back of the convention center--which is why I usually avoid these panels--and the Con's first big one was no let-down.
Keanu and Ms. Connelly both spoke about their roles in the film and numerous previews were shown. We weren't allowed to capture any of it on film but I can say without hesitation that it is indeed an updated version. The effects were deafening--or maybe that was stadium-sized speakers next to the press box--but that's fairly typical of event film trailers. Moreso with this one it seemed; it was certainly impressive. But to the fans, that impression wasn't nearly as strong as the stars themselves, as you can see from what appears to be every digital camera in the exhibition hall focusing at once.
Next up was the Red Sonja panel with Robert Rodriguez and Rose McGowan. I arrived early so there was no line but by the time I had gotten up to leave every seat in the slightly more modest "Room 6CDEF" was packed. Rodriguez didn't have much to show, just posters drawn up with McGowan's likeness really. Then he and McGowan discussed how they came to begin the project. Below is the autograph session that shortly followed in the Autograph alley. Well, at least the poster looks good.
Next up was the Chip Kidd panel on his upcoming book Bat-Manga, a 400+ page collection of officially licensed Batman manga from 1966. The panel, which displayed numerous slides of the collected artwork, was a fascinating time warp through a Japanese lens with some truly beautiful images. Kidd never disappoints and he's a riot in person. His book is due out October this year.
Sci-Fi Celebrity Sighting of the Day
Mr. Chekhov himself, Walter Koenig, from the original Star Trek. He swung by the Tor booth and here he is talking shop with fellow Tor.com blogger, Pablo Defendini.