On December 19, I ventured down to Ontario, California for the 2021 Comic Con Revolution, held annually at the Ontario Convention Center. I was curious to see how they were going to approach Covid protocols and I was greatly impressed with their forward thinking and planning. For those who were vaccinated, a simple check of your vaccination card was required. For those unvaccinated, they required a negative test within 72 hours of attending. Here was the best part…they had a testing facility on site where you could have a rapid test administered for $40. For those of you who would balk at that price, our local hospital charges $100 for rapid tests so I was quite impressed.
Outside of the venue, you were greeted by some of the most iconic vehicles from film and television including KITT from Knight Rider and the DeLorean from Back to the Future. Inside the venue, the badge pick up was run with impeccable efficiency. I was able to pick up my press pass and my daughter’s daily pass in a matter of moments. A QR code was displayed that gave you the entire layout of the convention center as well as autograph alley and the seminar rooms.
Staff was on hand at frequent intervals to direct you and answer any questions you might have. The only comparison I can give this is to that of the Disneyland staff. No convention worker left me without an answer to a question and they seemed as genuinely excited to be back as we were to have them back.
Autograph alley offered several opportunities to meet voice actors from shows like Avatar The Last Airbender and Naruto as well as the original Flash Gordon, Sam J. Jones. Legendary writer Chris Claremont of Uncanny X-Men fame was there and had a massive crowd. The highlight for me was Timothy Zahn. Zahn is the author of The Heir to the Empire saga of Star Wars novels which introduced us the character of Grand Admiral Thrawn. Thrawn has been featured in the animated Rebels show and will be making a live action appearance in the upcoming Ashoka Tano series on Disney+.
We here at NOWHERE CALIFORNIA will be looking forward to attending next year as well and will leave you with these pictures from this year‘s Ontario Comic Con Revolution.
This weekend, Anaheim CA was the host to the annual D23 Disney Expo. Sprawled across the Anaheim Convention Center D23 is the Comic Con of Disney Studios. The 3 day event covers many aspects of the ins and outs happening within Disney. It has also become a showcase for many of the Disney properties and has become the host of many award ceremonies that Disney uses to honor what they have termed as “Disney Legends”. Much like Hall H in San Diego, Disney uses a large part of the convention halls, to
premier upcoming Disney Films, TV shows, and Documentaries. The main focuses of this year’s D23 were the launch of the new Disney streaming service, Disney+. The service will be launching November 12 th and will be the home of the past and future Disney media. New and Past movies, and TV shows will be hosted on the service, and subscribers to the service will also be able to add-on packages, unlocking things like ESPN, and other Disney owned subsidiaries. The other focus of D23 was the ever growing universe that is Star Wars.
Disney purchased the hibernating giant that is Lucasfilm from George Lucas on October 30 th , 2012 for the sum of $4.05 Billion dollars. Since the purchase Disney has begun to put Lucasfilm in hyperdrive.
They have created 4 movies (The Force Awakens, The Last Jedi, Rogue One, Solo: A Star Wars story) with the 5 th movie, The Rise of Skywalker premiering December 20 th . They have produced 2 television shows
(Star Wars: Rebels, and Star Wars: Resistance), as well as countless web shorts. They retconned all current novels and comics to bring the “expanded universe” to a close, so that they could keep a linear story continuity in place to help control the new Disney narrative of Star Wars.
Disney begun their Star Wars announcements on Friday with Kathleen Kennedy (CEO, Lucasfilm) presenting the upcoming projects in a very Steve Job like format to the audience. The first announcement was for the 3 rd television series by Disney titled, The Mandalorian. The Mandalorian is a story set 5 years after the events of The Return of the Jedi. The story will follow the title character, simply dubbed “The Mandalorian”, played by veteran actor Pedro Pascal as a bounty hunter traversing the galaxy far from the reaches of the “New Republic”. This new show, written and produced by newly
awarded “Disney Legend” Jon Favearu will be more of a “a version of a show that took place after Return of the Jedi, after the revolution, after everybody’s done celebrating because the Empire is gone,” he said. “And then chaos reigns because there’s no central government in the galaxy and so it degrades into a world where, like the old Samurai movies and the old Westerns, where the gunfighters are roaming and people are fighting for their own safety.”
Rounding out the cast is former UFC fighter turned action movie starlet Gina Carano, veteran action movie actor Carl Weathers, actor/filmmaker Werner Herzohg, Breaking Bad villain Giancarlo Espisito, and New Zelander actor/filmmaker Taika Waititi who will be providing the voice of fellow bounty hunter, IG-11. Disney/Lucasfilm have been very selective of what they have shared in regards to the
show in the past, but they debuted a poster for Season 1 of the show:
They also premiered the first trailer for season 1:
Following on the tails of The Madalorian, Kennedy brought out actors Alan Tudyk and Diego Luna, 2 of the stars of the Star Wars standalone film Rogue One. Disney had previously announced a series following the adventures of Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), and K-2SO (Alan Tudyk) but details have always been very scarce. Sadly, details were not abundant on Friday, as the only pieces of information that were given is that its definitive place in the canon timeline is concurrent with the timeline of other post
Revenge of the Sith stories known as “The age of Rebellion”, and that the series will begin shooting in London next year. Alan Tuydk did offer up what he felt was a great title for the show: “Kay-Too Fast, Kay-Too Furious: A Cassian Andor Story.”
The biggest news to come out of Friday was the confirmation of a rumor that has been floating around the Star Wars community in one fashion or another since the completion of the prequel trilogy in 2005. News this week reinvigorated the rumors of an Obi-Wan Kenobi story, with such industry papers as The Hollywood Reporter, and Vanity Fair picking up the story as well. Kennedy doing her best to be settle, set up the audience to bring out one more actor, although by the amount of cheers that occurred before
she even mentioned the actors name, the audience was pretty clued into what was happening. That actor of course was young Obi-Wan Kenobi himself, Ewan McGregor. McGregor asked Kennedy to, infront of all the witnesses in the building, ask him if he is playing Obi-Wan Kenobi again. With resounding applause Kennedy asked this question to McGregor, who followed up with a simple yet Star Wars history defining, YES!
The story is now being touted as a Disney+ series, as compared to the long rumored movie trilogy, and there were no details given at the panel other than the confirmation of McGregor’s attachment and that the series which has its entire first season fully written will begin filming next year. The new current timeline was tweeted by Ryan Penagos, Vice President and Creative Executive of Marvel New Media.
This new timeline also confirms the official titles for each era of the series. Prequel stories, such as the trilogy films and the Clone Wars TV show, take place during the “Age of Republic” Stories between Solo: A Star Wars Story and Return of the Jedi take place at the “Age of Rebellion” Rounding out the end of the timeline everything from post Return of the Jedi which ends with The Rise of Skywalker exist within the “Age of Resistance”.
Disney also teased some episode 9 news with the release of the first “official” poster. There has been a teaser poster released previously but this is one is the first main poster to be made. This will be the poster that begins being placed in prominent locations in theatres nationwide.
Saturday was the big episode 9 day with the main panel stage being taken over for The Rise of Skywalker. Kathleen Kennedy, and J.J. Abrams were joined by cast members: Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels, Keri Russell, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, and Naomi Ackie. However, much like the Cassian/K-2SO announcement, there was not much in the way of details shared beyond what we already now. J.J. told a very heartwarming story about Carrie Fisher,
which included him discussing her influence on him making the decision to return to helm The Rise of Skywalker. New cast member Keri Rusell the star of the J.J. Abrams tv show Felicity, shared some of her excitement of being part of the Star Wars saga. Hitting the point home with a nice quip about her son now finding her cool. The panel completed with a First-Look “sizzle” reel of footage from The Rise of Skywalker. Many news outlets broke the story of the footage, going into great detail of what was seen,
as Disney did a great job preventing this footage from leaking online. Disney, ever the media buzz generator did upload the footage to the official Star Wars YouTube channel early Monday morning.
The footage does a great job in furthering the point that this film will be the conclusion of the multi-generational story of the Skywalker saga. Disney announced earlier this year that The Rise of Skywalker will be the definitive conclusion to the 9 movie series, as they have no intention of further telling the Skywalker story. But instead intend to move the series outside the Skywalker saga and being to tell new stories occurring in all parts of the timeline. Disney did not include Star Wars media in their Sunday programming, but focused more on the theme park and upcoming hotel’s future. A trailer for the 2 nd
ride for Galaxy’s Edge, The Rise of the Resistance was shown and subsequently leaked online. At the time of writing this article, Disney has not released the trailer on any official source, and has not made movements to have the leaked footage removed from YouTube.
As the release date approaches, we here at Nowhere California will be sitting down once more to discuss all of what has been released prior to the premier of the movie, and give our opinions, theories, and emotional stories that are tied to the youth defining franchise. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker premiers in theatres nationwide December 20th,2019 with early bird screenings beginning on December 19th,2019.
This year’s LACC has come and gone and once again Nowhere California was there to cover it. We will be bringing you posts over the next few days covering artists and cosplayers as well as coverage of the celebrity appearances throughout the weekend.
Kicking off our artist highlight is, by his own account, a freelance artist, husband, father of three as well as an Imaginary Sheriff. His name is Anthony Wheeler and he was gracious enough to spend some time chatting with me about his pop culture love and his need to get every detail into his pieces.
Now I am a die hard Goonies fan and the piece below caught my eye immediately. It’s an adorable representation of Chunk and Sloth at first glance, but it was Wheeler’s painstaking attention to detail and his pop culture knowledge that truly sold me on this piece (which I bought by the way!!). “I love having moments like this where I just get have a conversation with people” Wheeler said regarding the Friday night first day lull and converse we did. He drew my attention first to Chunk’s raincoat and said “It’s not a very common raincoat like the typical yellow ones…”. What he was most proud of was actually Chunk’s shoes. Not something one really remembers in The Goonies and for good reason…it ONLY appears in one frame of the film! “I took it frame by frame until I found a single frame in the Fratelli’s basement where Chunk was jumping to see the ice cream. I found out it was a Nike sneaker and had to research that specific shoe from 1985 to really see how it worked”. We spent a solid chunk (no pun intended!) of time discussing his art and shared love of pop culture in which…*ahem*…he ASSURED me he was now motivated and excited to do an print of the ENTIRE Goonies lineup which of course I immediately agreed to buy the first!
Anthony has artwork from DC and Marvel comics as well as the Harry Potter franchise and some of the coolest takes on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (seriously go checkout his Usagi Ujimbo!!). You can find his artwork on his official website https://www.anthonywheelerart.com/ where there is also a link to his Instagram feed. Always open for ideas and conversation, I HIGHLY recommend dropping Mr. Wheeler a line.
The 2018 edition of the San Diego Comic Con will be coming to a close in a matter of hours, the upcoming slate of pop culture releases and breaking franchise news will have a ripple effect for weeks to come. The multiple super hero universes are never going to be the same and, as the bad guys team up in one world, we are reminded that not all heroes wear capes. They wear pajamas and, coincidentally, so do the villains.
Those are not delusions of grandeur you are feeling, that is a legitimate feeling of splendor and you have the new trailer for GLASS to thank for that pleasure.
GLASS is the follow-up of the 2016 movie SPLIT, a movie some would say that was a surprise hit and the closing of that movie was one of the multiple reasons for that film’s success. A spoiler alert could be in play for the following sentence, but get bent and watch the damn movie. SPLIT closed with writer/director M. Night Shyamalan linking this movie to another movie from his cannon, UNBREAKABLE which I will not drag this out and just say if you haven’t seen UNBREAKABLE.. Walk away from your computer now.
Now, the trailer for GLASS has been unleashed and everybody is ready for some group therapy. David Dunn, Mr. Glass, and The Horde are behind the walls of a mental institution, but their journey to this point is quickly brought into question and we have a doctor that will begin to look for the answers. A doctor that will try to inject some reality into this unreal situation, but as their past will show, this group’s traits reach far past the pages of the comic book world.
The holidays have been drowned away by the New Year’s hangovers, so the time has come to return to our coverage of Stan Lee’s 2017 Los Angeles Comic Con. The hiatus may have been longer then we hoped, but this spotlight is focused sharply on a talented entry from the world of independent comic books.
In this installment, we continue our adventures into Artist Alley and talk with the creative minds behind “Olive and the Underworld,” Emily Felt and Laura West. This conversation delves into the books creation and development of this story of an orphaned goth girl named Olive and the rollercoaster life she lives, trying to fit in and find a home. As the speed bumps seems to grow, her world and her classmate’s world change in a tragic twist of fate.
I can continue to describe this story, but a better description will come from the creators and not from me, so
Forget about Batman versus Superman and Captain America versus Iron Man doesn’t hold a candle to a battle that has been fought for centuries. The war of the ages have been fought between the worlds of man versus the brutal beasts we know as ROCKS! During the 2016 Stan Lee’s Los Angeles Comic Convention, the guys from Nowhere had the pleasure to talk with the men behind the insanity known as MAN Vs. ROCK.
Kevin Bieber and Victor De Troy are the creator of this comic book madness, the world of MAN Vs. ROCK is something that has to be seen to be believed and the same can be said about talking to these two men. The Nowhere California team didn’t have a video camera ready, but the audio will allow you to take fun journey.
If you can’t tell from the audio, this was a fun conversation and the entire Nowhere California team would like to thank these guys for their time. Their input and descriptions of the evolution of their creation was awesome. Also, their WTF Movie Moment picks will go into the Nowhere Hall Of Fame.
In recent years the Hollywood system seems to have grown complacent to the fans that help build their bank accounts and credibility. Every year for every popular movie, there are multiple movies that should have seen a lot more red light and lesser green ones. The fan’s apathy could cause the next lackluster installment of “Fantastic 4” or the fan’s passion could rise up and decide for the original content we deserve. This is where LEGION M comes in and changes the Hollywood machine.
LEGION M is the first fan owned entertainment company, the fans make the decisions and the fans will reap the rewards. At the recent Los Angeles Comic Convention, the co-founder and president of LEGION M., Jeff Annison was in attendance at the convention to introduce the convention goers to the world of LEGION M and their current project the “Pitch Elevator”
I was lucky enough to sit down with Jeff and delve into the creation of this unique concept…
The foundation of LEGION M is why I love independent creativity and why Nowhere California exists. I consider it an honor that I had an opportunity talk with Jeff and learn about this company. The entire Nowhere California team would like to thank Jeff for taking the time to talk with us and we urge all of our listeners to join the legion.
The guys from Nowhere are continuing their coverage from the 2016 Stan Lee Los Angeles Comic Con and they are crossing paths with another friend from conventions past who happens to have their roots in the Garden State.
In this installment of our convention’s coverage, we talk with the multitalented Marilyn Ghigliotti and this isn’t here first visit to Nowhere, as the Nowhere California Team has crossed paths with her two other times in this past year.
The first meeting took place at the 2015 Stan Lee’s Comikaze (who would have thought that would be the last year for that moniker)
Now, with that refresher out of the way, here is our newest interview with Marilyn. In this conversation, we talk about some of her newest projects and convention life. Also, the discussion delves into the continuing legacy of the little movie known as CLERKS.
As always, it was an absolute pleasure and highlight of the convention to talk with Marilyn. The entire Nowhere California team would like to send a gratitude for taking the time to talk with us and we can’t wait until our next conversation.
The guys here at Nowhere California have launched a new campaign that, at the very least, will get us some awesome shirts made, and at best, we might just earn some money that we can put towards our convention expenses and equipment costs.
We have designed an exclusive “HACK PACK” t-shirt and the short goal is to sell 14 shirts which will get them to print. If we can reach a goal of 50 shirts, then we will actually make some money to put towards expanding our horizons at Nowhere California.
The campaign can be found at http://www.booster.com/nowhereca and the shirt runs a total of $19.99 with shipping included. They are 100% cotton high quality t-shirts that you can show off at conventions or comic shops. BUT WAIT!! THERE’S MORE!! The first 14 people who purchase shirts will receive ALL of our interviews and content from the upcoming Stan Lee’s Comikaze before the general public does.
We here at Nowhere California don’t usually like to pander but…OKAY OKAY we have never been above pandering to get listeners and now we hope that same shameless groveling will get you to join the HACK PACK and sport our mildly suggestive t-shirt!! Excelsior!!!!
A few weeks ago, Nowhere California was introduced to the independent horror/comedy “CONJOINED” and I was quickly intrigued by this bare bones, but highly creative movie. I wrote a review for this movie and posted my thoughts to this website.
Recently, I was able to talk to one of the creative minds behind this movie and talk to Joe Grisaffi. Joe was the director of “CONJOINED” and this interview dives into the evolution of a crazy story idea. Also, our conversation takes a look at Joe’s career and his adventures in the 8-bit video game world.