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Movie Mom

Comic-Con, Preview Night

posted by Nell Minow

I am thrilled to be back at Comic-Con and the preview night was sensational.  The special effects geniuses at WETA have really outdone themselves and their enormous trolls from Peter Jackson’s upcoming “The Hobbit” were magnificent.  I saw “Star Wars” cookbooks (one with a recipe for Wookiee pies and a Darth Vader cookie cutter) and a meta comic book about Siegel and Shuster, the teenagers who created Superman (and inspired Michael Chabon’s The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, soon to be a movie).   I watched upcoming television programs “The Following,” with James Purefoy as a serial killer and Kevin Bacon as a damaged former FBI agent and “Revolution,” a post-apocalyptic story about earth fifteen years after all power sources mysteriously stop working.  I interviewed Lisa Camp, editor in chief of the “distinguished but daring” publishing firm McFarland & Company, with its wide-ranging and extraordinarily expert books.  And I had the very great pleasure of speaking to Disney animation legend Don Hahn about his new film, “Frankenweenie.”  Based on the cult classic short film by Tim Burton, this stop-motion feature will open this fall.  I asked Hahn about the difference between digital and live-action animation, he told me that it was the physical challenge.  The sets, like this one of a schoolroom, were laid out in one huge room and the effort involved in reaching and stretching to make the minute adjustments for each frame was “like Pilates,” he told me.  I especially admired the way he tied in what they did to the best from the past (he said they used the same technique developed by special effects master Ray Harryhausen) and the present (digital cameras allowed them to get immediate feedback on what they were doing).  I will be attending press conferences on “Frankenweenie” and the final film in the “Twilight” series later today.  Stay tuned!

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