Well, WonderCon has come and gone and if you were in attendance, you are no doubt feeling it today! With so much to see and do, it is impossible to see everything that the floor has to offer, even for us! We have gathered some of the best things to come out of WonderCon this year (that we saw)!
Alright, grabbing pictures of every single awesome cosplay that made its way into the Anaheim Convention Center this weekend but we did our best to grab a few that we knew you would love!
Warner Brothers was on hand this year to present footage of both Mad Max: Fury Road and the new disaster flick, San Andreas.
With San Andreas, the panel showed what they called a “Super-Cut” of the trailer that we have seen several times. There may have been more destruction but, really, it did not appear to show much more footage than we have previously seen. The big push for the movie really came on the Exhibit Hall floor at the Warner Brothers area. WB set up a mobile viewing experience where attendees could witness the trailer with the new gimmick of experiencing the rumbles and shakes of the earthquakes being depicted throughout the film, thanks to “Butt Thumpers” – i.e. rumbling devices in the seats and floors. This did at a bit to the viewing experience and for those that are lucky enough to live in an area where the technology will be used will likely enjoy the 4D experience.
The biggest thing to come out of the San Andreas panel was the fact that much of the effects in the film are practical effects. There are, obviously, some things that you just can’t do with practical effects these days but whenever possible, director Brad Peyton avoided the green screen. Two of the stars of the film, Carla Gugino and Alexandra Daddario, were on hand to back up these claims. For Carla, her scariest scene was one in which she falls four stories through a building, straight down, and during the filming of the scene, she was basically a marionette, having wires attached to each limb. The two men holding the cables were as kind as possible but, as you can imagine, even the most competent stunt doubles would get a bit of an adrenaline rush falling four stories straight down and the fact that Carla was willing to do this herself speaks volumes about the actress. Daddario’s scariest scene came in the form of hundreds of gallons of water being slammed her way, which could have easily resulted in a drowning. Peyton had nothing but great things to say about the pair of actresses or, as the moderator put it, “the best special effect in Hollywood, The Rock”. Peyton had worked with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in Journey 2 the Mysterious Island, and the experience went smoothly enough that Johnson showed a lot of trust with the director during the San Andreas shooting. The director promises that we will see Johnson testing new boundaries with his dramatic and emotional acting in this film. If you haven’t had a chance yet, check out the trailer. If you like disaster flicks, this one is definitely for you.
While the footage of San Andreas has been seen through various trailers, Fury Road did bring along some footage that only those at SXSW were lucky enough to witness before now:
The scene opens with Max rising from the sand in which he is buried. He has a metal apparatus around his head which basically acts as a cage for his face. A chain that is attached to the back of the apparatus leads Max to the body to which the other side is attached at the wrist. Desperate, Max looks around for a means to escape this situation and, lo and behold, he just so happens to find a loaded double barrel shotgun! What luck for the Road Warrior, right? Not so much. As he puts the barrel of the shotgun against the body’s wrist to literally shoot his way free, Max pulls the trigger, only to get the same result one would get from a dud firecracker, i.e. a sizzle and a bit of smoke. Being the resourceful S.O.B. that he is, Max decides to bite his way through the wrist. Just as he is beginning to nibble, he notices a vehicle in the distance and decides that it’s time to blow this pop stand and see what that vehicle (a big rig tanker truck) has to offer.
Max approaches the vehicle with the body draped over his shoulders like nothing but a bag of potatoes. Turns out, there is a group of four women at the truck which seem like a mirage in such a desert wasteland. To further add to the surrealism of the scene he has stumbled upon, three of the women are bathing with water that seems to be coming from the tank the truck is carrying, and there is an abundant supply. Max stares as the women bathe, clothed in dresses that cling to their skin, and one of the women is very pregnant. The water isn’t the only thing on these women’s mind, though. In addition to their dresses, they also wear chastity belts that seemed to have been created by a very twisted individual, possibly with a vagina dentata fetish. As they cut through the locks holding the belts in place, the women finally notice Max. Charlize Theron’s character, Imperator Furiosa, stands in defiance to Max, her eyes darting around, taking in the scene. Max drops the body then raises the shotgun and points it at them. This is the first time Max speaks in the film and, as you can probably expect, his first grunts are for water. Furiosa nods her acceptance and one of the women cautiously brings Max the hose. He drinks greedily from the hose while keeping one eye on the women and his shotgun raised. Furiosa notices an approaching caravan behind Max that he has not yet spotted and, possibly assuming he is part of the caravan, informs him that they will not be going back. After hydrating himself, he motions to the women to bring him the bolt cutters they were using on their chastity belts, so that he can cut the chain attaching him to the body. As one of the women brings it to him, Furiosa makes her move and attacks Max. This leads to a hell of a fight between the two where Furiosa holds her own, even with only one full arm, as the other is severed at the elbow, leaving nothing but a stump that healed long before she ran into Max. During this brutal fight, the body we had all assumed was dead opens its eyes after being doused with water, and the body joins the fight, as do the women. The scene is brutal and full of grimace-inducing punches that can be felt through the screen.
The scene then skips ahead as Max and Furiosa are now in the cab racing through the sand in the desert. They arrive in what seems to be an empty valley and step out of the truck, just as several men on motorcycles pull up to the cliffs overlooking the valley. This is the cavalry, though they weren’t expecting the caravan of vehicles that are chasing the group of women and Max. They have it handled, though, and just as the caravan is approaching the valley, a set of explosions crumble the cliffs down on top of the bad guys and it is here that the scene ends.
Seriously, the Fury Road May 15 release date just can’t get here quickly enough. We do not have the footage that was screened but here’s a quick reminder why we are so excited for this movie. Oh, man.
Blumhouse decided to bring the horror to WonderCon and showcased Insidious 3, Sinister 2, The Gallows, and Unfriended. NerdBastards was lucky enough to sit down with the cast of Insidious 3 as well as the cast of Unfriended, and producer Jason Blum, so we will save some of the panel information for later this week. We will, however, give you a couple of clips that attendees were shown!
The Gallows has not yet released any of the footage but from the brief glimpse shown at the convention, the movie looks scary as hell.
The brief footage focused on a woman on the floor, crying, with a red light covering everything. We notice a figure in the background, not really doing much besides creeping but the figure is definitely doing a good job of it. The woman on the floor looks into the camera and displays her neck, which is bloody. She looks around and suddenly has a noose around her neck. The scene gives the audience just enough time to get uncomfortable before scaring the bejebus out of them, when the woman is pulled back harshly into the dark.
As for Sinister 2, well, we will just leave you with this little clip that had the audience cheering.
All in all, WonderCon gave attendees yet another great convention this year. Anaheim has been the playground for the convention for the past few years but it was revealed during the convention that thanks to construction plans, next year’s event will be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center. No word on the dates yet but you may want to wait to make those Easter plans for next year, just in case.
What did we miss? What was your favorite part of the convention? How do you feel about the change in venue?