Con Talk: Denver Comic Con 2018
Dalton’s Coverage, Saturday
DCC 2018 has been a fantastic con so far, with some great panels that have featured fan favorites and glimpses into new films around the corner. These awesome panels and the whole Denver Comic Con 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, onto the panels!
I was able to catch three panels today, featuring Sean Gunn and Pom Klementieff of Guardians of the Galaxy, David Harbour of Stranger Things, and my second panel with Alan Tudyk.
Sean Gunn and Pom Klementieff
The two co-stars of Guardians of the Galaxy saw their roles increased (Gunn) or introduced (Pom), respectively, in the Guardians sequel. They both acknowledged the family dynamic of everyone on set, and it showed in their balance on stage. Gunn was collected and to-the-point with many of his answers, whereas Pom was bubbly and expressive with her own. It was a great perspective of the franchise as they played off each other like a loving brother and sister.
Pom’s positive personality boiled over in the early going, stating what she liked most about her character Mantis was “[she was able to act like a weirdo]”, and when asked about the difficulty of the role, she said she “can’t wait to shoot the next one!”
Sean mentioned in regards to filling the space of Rocket on set that he ended up stealing one of the jumpsuits he had to wear as a souvenir, and that the suit featured a stitched Rocket patch the crew playfully placed there. Pom chimed in on the topic of Sean and Rocket, that he had to fold himself into a little human ball in order to fill the role properly.
When asked who their favorite person to work with was, both sarcastically replied that their least favorite was “[Michael] Rooker.” Sean would clarify this joke later, stating that Rooker is like the crazy drunk uncle of the family, but is a true professional and great to work with in reality.
When asked if Sean’s character Kraglin survived Thanos’ snap, Sean replied cryptically, “I can neither confirm nor deny…[but I believe we will find out one way or another]”…which is exciting news that we will indeed get an answer to this question and it will likely bring laughter!
Harbour’s panel was thick with interest in his perspective over his character in Stranger Things, and intrigue over his new role as Hellboy early next year. He was more open and candid about the Hellboy reboot than I expected, and it was by far the highlight of the panel, given the tidbits he shared.
Harbour began his panel recalling experiences on the TV show Pan Am and his recent appearances on the hit show Newsroom, but he was soon drawn into questioning about Hellboy and he obliged with his calm and clever wit.
He said it took about 2 1/2 hours to get into the prosthetics for the role, mentioning two things in regards to the suit…firstly, it’s all practical effects, and secondly, that’s not his body displayed on screen. Of course, he mentioned this as people have assumed with the few shots revealed of the character that those are Harbour’s abs, and while he admitted to gaining some strength, much of what we see is suit.
And that led him openly to his next and most exciting point…which was that nearly all of the film is practical effects. He’s practical, the fights are practical, the stunts are practical, and he said even the monsters themselves are practical effects. This is truly exciting news, because I, like him, agree that there is a tangible nature and density to practical effects that CG can’t copy. And that there is a reason Mad Max: Fury Road is so highly praised.
Harbour was asked what his favorite scene was in Stranger Things, and he quickly responded with a particular moment…When his character, Sheriff Hopper, was scared his trailer was bugged after being drugged, he ends up tearing the place apart to find the hidden tech. The scene in the trailer was simply him tearing the place apart as a single cameraman followed him, all in one take. And the trailer itself cost a single dollar for the crew to purchase!
I’ll end on Harbour’s most important note, and that was in regards to his connections with Greenpeace. He feels the world is in serious trouble, and he made a call to the audience that if we devoted just some of our energy towards fandom towards the noble cause of saving our planet, we could make a huge difference.
The always-lovable Tudyk did not disappoint in his second appearance at DCC in which I’ve been able to see him. While I wasn’t expecting to grab much in the way of news, I was excited to see him again because of his amazing personality and ability to connect and entertain the audience. And he was spot-on again. And here are some brief highlights:
When asked which voice he is asked to do the most, he replied “Heihei” from Moana, but his favorite voice is that of King Candy in Wreck-It Ralph.
When asked if he preferred live-action or voice acting, Tudyk said he preferred live-action because it is harder and therefore has a greater pay-off.
He was asked if there were plans for a Tucker and Dale vs. Evil sequel, and he said that they admittedly tried a script and it fell flat, and that they don’t currently have an answer, but they are trying to find the answer.
When asked his favorite death scene from that film, he quickly responded with “the wood chipper”, but then mentioned his love for the Sheriff death scene as well.
And I’ll end with this fantastic tale of Tudyk and Anthony Daniels, the actor who played C-3PO. At the premiere for Rogue One, in which Tudyk plays K-2SO (another droid), Daniels approached Tudyk and asked him, “Are you in the droid or do you mo-cap it?” Tudyk replied, “I mo-cap it.” Daniels responded “You shit…”
Then, just before the premiere, Daniels says to Tudyk, “I’ll give you notes after the movie.” And after the premiere, Daniels seeks out Tudyk, walks straight up to him and just mumbles…”Fuck you.” And Tudyk said that was the best “Fuck you” he’d ever gotten.