Denver Comic Con 2018
Kyle’s Coverage, Saturday
Wow was my Saturday packed with exciting stuff at Denver ComicCon 2018! With so many panels and activities, it is an amazing event to attend. Not just because it is a gathering of geeks but also because of the reason we have the con. The whole shebang is brought to us by Pop Culture Classroom. The education program ignites a love of learning, increases literacy, celebrates diversity and builds community through the tools of popular culture and the power of self-expression. It is a priceless community asset that has collaborated with DCC for years, and deserves a shout-out here! Now let’s talk about my day at the con!
Joonas Suotamo was a delight. Everything from how long it took him to master Chewie’s sounds and mannerisms to how best to scare your kid (it involves a nerf gun and a party balloon), chatting with Joonas in his panel was awesome. He is such a down to earth individual who was a nerd like the rest of us as a kid, watching Star Wars on VHS over and over again with his dad. Originally when Joonas was asked to audition for Star Wars, they needed him to do his best caveman impression, on tape, which we hope still exists out there somewhere! He said his favorite Star Wars movie so far was Solo, mostly because the movie allowed for a lot of focus on Chewie’s development as a character, albeit it took him more than an hour to get into costume. The scene where Han and Chewie meet for the first time was one of his favorites, but also one of the hardest scenes to film due to the wetness and the fake mud. They even ended up ruining one of the five Chewie suits made for the film just for that scene. Joonas ended his panel by commenting on trolls on the internet and how much he prefers interacting with fans in person at these wonderful conventions!
Ray Park is a very interesting man who has been in a lot of films I truly enjoy. From Mortal Kombat to Star Wars, he is a presence when he takes on a role. Ray chatted about his focus on being fit and how different roles all needed different kinds of regimens. Darth Maul was more about agility, but a role like Snake Eye required a bit more muscle overall. He was very humble about his role as Darth Maul, he wasn’t one to brag to people he saw on the street about how he was that character. However, nowadays he loves taking selfies with fans and with his characters in the backdrop. He was always one to do his own stunt, keeping figures like Jackie Chan as his inspiration. Currently, though, he is in a bit of a different state being 43 and having a family. He ended his panel by telling us all the Force is strong in all of us and teaching a fellow Darth Maul cosplayer how to spin their lightsaber!
I will be honest. I went into Graham McTavish’s panel without any clue who he was or what I was in for and it ended up being one of the better panels I saw today! Graham has been in a lot of awesome movies and shows including The Hobbit films and Preacher. It was very interesting hearing him talk about how he helped name Dwalin’s axes (Grasper and Keeper) and his collection of Dwarf noses that he got on set. He also told us an anecdote about the barrel scene from The Desolation of Smaug. The barrel riding scene was quite different in the films than in the books but it turns out Peter had them film the end of that scene themselves and a few dwarves needed….help… getting back to shore. One of the more poignant things Graham said during his panel was that as an actor one takes all the emotions they have felt in their life and turns it into art with the lines that have been written for you. This was a beautiful sentiment about emotion and the art of acting.
Not quite knowing what to expect seemed to define my day today at DCC 2018, and this panel was the epitome of that. Unfortunately, Jonny Brugh didn’t show up but we did get to chat with the wonderfully blunt and hilarious Deacon from the vampire documentary What We Do In the Shadows. If you haven’t seen the film you should stop reading right now and watch it. Regardless this panel was fantastic. Deacon was very literal when answering questions, which is something that I found hilarious. “How are all your flatmates doing these days?” asked a con-goer. “Good” Deacon answered simply, then paused for a long awkward, hilarious length before elaborating. He also had a great rapport with the audience members. From referring to all the front row as virgins (which is his favorite blood type) to cracking jokes at the audience’s expense it was really refreshing to see and it was totally my type of humor. At the very end of the panel, he taught us all a (not-so) erotic dance lesson, which was by far the most fun I have had in a panel in a long time.
Saturday was an awesome day at DCC 2018, but don’t just take my word for it. If you wanna read about more panels check out the other AeitherNet writer’s experiences today:
See ya next time!