(Photo credit Jeff Kravitz)
Kristian Nairn is a Northern Irish actor and DJ. He is best known for his portrayal of Hodor in the HBO fantasy series Game of Thrones. Fans are still reeling at Hodor’s demise in “The Door” from season 6. There, he perished after holding a door closed against an onslaught of White Walkers feverishly focused on dismantling Bran and Meera apart as they escaped the Three-Eyed Raven’s cave. Though his character spoke very little and language reduced to one word “Hodor”, his presence was large. And not just because the actor is a (really) large man (6’10) but because of his sweet, simple, gentle, and fatherly nature. In person, Kristian is just as humble and caring.
We caught up with Kristian at a GoT media event at Boston’s AT&T flagship store ahead of the Season 8 Premier (4/14). We talked World of Warcraft, the culture of Game of Thrones, fan rage and a few other subjects to which he offered insight and humor.
Over forty years and eight sprawling novels, the Man in Black fled across worlds and the gunslinger followed. They chased from comic books (a prequel series), an animated TV show (in an alternate universe), and now, finally, there’s a big-screen, big-budget adaptation of The Dark Tower that was more than a decade in the making. Less an adaptation proper of Stephen King‘s series than a continuation that begs, borrows, and lifts ideas, concepts, and characters into a hyper-condensed running time (all of 95 minutes, including credits), The Dark Tower won’t (and shouldn’t) win any converts to King’s self-described multiverse-spanning magnum opus (including a planned TV series) or thrill longtime fans who’ll rightly feel cheated by The Dark Tower’s failure to convey the wonder and awe, the scale and spectacle, of King’s work.
As the quality of cosplays from creators all across the world gets ever more impressive, many artists are exploring new ways to make their work stand out. From perfecting their battle cry to recreating their gait as they walk the convention floor, today’s cosplayers fully commit to bringing their favourite characters to life in every way possible. Stuntman Ben Schamma¸ better known to his fans as Maul Cosplay, takes this dedication to a whole new level. Between his martial arts skills and his stunt experience, Ben brings the dangerous attitude of the hardest fighters and renegades from popular culture to the real world.
A staple of German TV and movies, where his fights and stunts have become a part of the action-packed fabric of German entertainment, Ben still takes the time to showcase his cosplay work at conventions all over the world. From the fiercely competitive scene of his native Germany to the emerging community in Ireland, his stony-face, musclebound characters are hard to ignore.
We caught up with Ben to find out how he gets inside the head of pop culture’s roughest, toughest characters. (more…)
For so many years, cosplay was a niche hobby even among the global nerd community. It is only in the past few years that it has gathered mainstream attention and, for some of the early attempts at introducing it to a wider audience, not all of it was good. This year, Syfy showcased cosplay in an entirely new way with its show Cosplay Melee. It focussed on the creative drive and the passion felt by everyone who makes the effort to step into the shoes of their favourite characters by bringing pop culture’s most fantastic costumes to life.
The show wouldn’t have been anywhere near as successful if it wasn’t for the dedication of the cosplayers who strutted their stuff on the Cosplay Melee catwalk. Becka Noel was one of the creators who took the leap from convention floor to international television and captured the imaginations of nerds all over the world with her art.
We spoke to Becka to find out how the show has changed her work in cosplay and what she could possibly have lined up to follow it. (more…)
When top cosplayers strut their stuff on stage or the convention floor, all flashing armour and skin tight spandex and story accurate props, they seem like the most confident people in the world. They step into the shoes of their favourite characters and, for a moment, they leave behind the stresses of the real world in favour of the effortless cool of their new identity. The excitement of seeing these characters come to life is only heightened knowing that the person underneath the suit is a fan just like everyone else at the convention. (more…)
One of those hobbies that requires buckets of passion, a flair for creativity and the confidence to show off your work, cosplay can be a daunting thing to get into. It’s the kind of thing you have to be prepared to devote tons of time and likely a fair bit of money to in order to get the most out of it. Once you’ve vaulted those hurdles, many cosplayers will tell you there’s hardly a more fulfilling hobby or more supportive community out there, even if you a little hesitant to jump in at the deep end first time round.
PixelPantz Cosplay is the artist that very nearly wasn’t, if one awesome friend hadn’t been so convincing. We spoke to her about what finally persuaded her to give it a go and the creative adventure she’s been on ever since.
Every cosplayer, no matter how new or inexperienced, is at their core a creative person. A lot of imagination goes into taking a character off a screen or out of a comic book and recreating it in the real world, particularly if you have the skills to raft it to suit your own physical characteristics. The cosplayers that really stand out, though, are the ones that go above and beyond to make their costumes unique. The ones who mash together hugely different characters and themes to create a bizarrely familiar yet very distinct cosplay. The ones who find the least sexy thing in all of popular culture and find a way to confuse all the boners.
Helena Steele is one such cosplayer, and has been blowing minds with her original twists on awesome characters since she first made the move from modeling to cosplay. (more…)
There are very few cosplayers who get to cosplay professionally from the moment they find it. Usually, you have to have a pretty big following in some other career – and that career can’t be just anything. It needs to have some kind of relationship to nerd culture so that your fan base will be encouraging and supportive of your cosplay work, rather than just seeing it as a passingly interesting hobby. Tanya Tate not only got a huge chunk of her fan base to celebrate her love of cosplay with her, but was also lucky enough to be able to incorporate it into her day job as an adult film star.
We caught up with Tanya to find out about her extraordinary career – her movies, her reviews, her vinyl toys, her superheroes, and more.
Oh, and her cosplay.
Now that the Power Rangers reboot has hit screens across the globe, it seems that the world is still interested in those morphin’ teens, which should come as no surprise to fans of the series. One of the Power Rangers’ biggest supporters is Dredd producer, Adi Shankar. When we last spoke with Adi, he had lots to say about his upcoming Castlevania adaptation. While excitement for that one continues to build, we caught up with Adi who shared his thoughts on the new version of the Power Rangers, why The Avengers are outdated, and why the X-Men will always be better than the heroes sitting at the Tower. We also tried to ask him about the rumor that he’s on the short list to direct the Sony Spider-Man villain spin-off film Venom but we advised by his publicist to not talk or ask any questions about that (we’ll let you think what means). (more…)
If there is one truly beautiful thing about the cosplay community that is consistent throughout the world, it is that you don’t not have to be famous or well known for people to notice you. If you have a good costume, that you have put effort into making accurate and eye-catching, you’ll get just as much attention at conventions as anyone else there. PixelCat cosplay is one of that exact breed of creators, who have a modest following on social media but never fail to turn heads when she’s out in her best cosplay.
We caught up with PixelCat to find out what inspires her to step into the shoes of her favourite characters and how she brings them to life. (more…)