Friday, April 01, 2011

Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively Talk Green Lantern At WonderCon SF

Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively, the acting pair that star in the upcoming movie take of the legendary comic book series called The Green Lantern, were introduced to the WonderCon crowd to cheers and ovations, mostly for Ryan Reynolds, the man People Magazine once gave the title "Sexiest Man Alive" to.

Because of that, came almost immediate yells for Reynolds to take off his shirt, to which a minority asked to see Blake Lively's legs.

Hey, the Gossip Girl star's sexy too!

But the subject really was The Green Lantern Movie.

Before Reynolds, Lively (who plays Carol Ferris), and DC Entertainment Chief Creative Officer Jeff Johns (the "Green Lantern guru") were introduced, the standing-room only crowd was given a taste of The Green Lantern movie to come: a well-done 10 minute segment that starts with a visit to "Section 2814," and has Abin Sur, the best warriors of the Green Lantern Corps, escaping near death from a space creature by getting away in a pod headed for Earth. Upon crash-landing, he's rescued by Hal Jordan, a test pilot, but dies before Hal can get help. As he's dying, Abin Sur explains that the "ring" chose Jordan.

The clip was very well done, and should go a long way toward silencing people who speculated that there may be a problem with the special effects in the movie. What this blogger and the audience saw was breath-taking, and will look even better in 3-D, even though the effect really isn't necessary.

That set the stage for Reynolds, Lively, and Johns.

Some highlights from this 31 minutes of video - the entire talk is on it:

1) The movie was made in Louisiana, which points to another trend of Hollywood going to the South (The Last Dance, for example) to make movies.

2) The Green Lantern was the first "super-heavy" special effects movie for both Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively, causing Reynolds to deliver a number of funny quips. "You know. Spending six months in a sound stage in Louisiana, staring at the color blue, until you have two large occular cavaties actually feels pretty good when you see that shit right there," Reynolds said, "I highly recommend it." (Referring to the clip that was just shown.)

3) Blake Lively shared that turning brunette to fit the character of Carol Ferris was a "matter of national security" to her bodyguard, who's normally quiet, but is such a Green Lantern fan he was instructing Lively on what to do with respect to her role.

4) Johns says that the movie is "sticking pretty much to the mythology," which shows the high level of respect DC Entertainment has for The Green Lantern's fan base.

5) Ryan Reynolds said his diet while filming in Louisians was awful "All I ate were orphaned children." Mr. Reynolds shared that he spent six months in training before filming, including learning gymnastics. "I'm not an old guy, but I'm not a young guy anymore, when landing from 20 feet onto concrete was hilarious...You can't tell that those (gymnastics guys) aren't six-two. It's pretty hard to back-flip when you're over five-foot-seven."

6) Reynolds says he's a "Star Wars kid" and sees his character as a mix of Chuck Yeger and Han Solo. Someone who can whip out a wise crack and set everyone back to reality.

That's some of the highlights of the panel discussion. The video, at 31 minutes, has it all.

Will Green Lantern Score?

With all of the super hero movies coming out, it's going to be an exciting, yet rocky year for sci-fi movies. The reason is with so many special effects, the audience may be less interested in a movie driven by visuals and want more story. To the extent The Green Lantern delivers on the latter, it may overcome such issues, and if that's the case, it could be considered one of the best movies of its kind ever made.

Stay tuned.

WonderCon SF Day 1: Unemployed Man, Carla Speed, Femme Fatale,and Afro Sheen

Day one of WonderCon San Francisco featured the usual sights and sounds, which also means the unusual sights and sounds. First, Friday, wasn't as crowded as it's going to be on Saturday, Day Two, because the event happens at a time when many would-be patrons are working. Still, there were enough people for Foursquare to read "it's packed in here," when this blogger checked in.

The highlights were meeting one of the writers of "Unemployed Man," a graphic novel that's received great acclaim in the UK (so says it's writer). The creators brand is such that they didn't even have a common booth; the books were presented on a cart outside Moscone Center.

The next highlight was a talk with legendary comic book publisher Carla Speed, who says that within nine hours she can churn out 40 pages of comic book illustration work. She also says that she's learned over the years that everything is normal to someone. Carla says that there are more women in the field now than ever, so much so that she met three women on the floor that day who went right from high school into an art or gaming animation education program.

CineMax, the cable network, used WonderCon SF to present its new show called Femme Fatale, due to air Friday, May 13th. (Yes, Friday the 13th.) The idea is that we like to see sexy women doing bad, and Femme Fatale has an ensemble cast (the common formula for many female-oriented shows), which will be giving interviews on Saturday.

Finally, we have a man in blue wig who calls himself Afro Sheen. This dude, who was in the line with us waiting to see The Green Lantern Panel, was a total riot. So much so that he earned his own video!

Those were the highlights. WonderCon Day Two is tomorrow.

April Fools Day Doesn't Stop WonderCon SF, Ryan Reynolds No Joke

Today is not only April 1st, it's April Fools Day, that day of pranks, some funny, others not, but it's the first day of the 25th WonderCon in San Francisco. WonderCon starts this morning and this blogger's headed over for three days of comics, tech, geeks, nerds, people trying to be geeks and nerds, and geeks and nerds trying to win a costume contest (tonight) and meet The Green Lantern's Ryan Reynolds.

(Why is there the urge to say "The Green Lampshade's Ryan Reynolds?")

What's to look forward to, today at WonderCon? Well, it's the first day of the presentation of a number of works, both established and new, not just from Marvel and DC Comics, but from BOOM!, Image, and a number of alternative comics publishers. It will also be interesting to see just how much of the Moscone Center South space is taken up, because there's been a trend of sorts of smaller events just because there's not as much money sloshing around.

In other word, less overall money to spend on comics, and due to job loss and credit reductions, theoretically translates to more publishers skipping WonderCon and ComicCon. Note, theoretically. The objective today will be to determine if facts fit that hypothesis.

But I digress.

Ryan Reynolds will appear at the Esplanade Room at 5 PM, and that's certain to be a major event. Many fans will be looking not just for him and Green Lantern co-star Blake Lively, but for any new clips from the movie. That's important, because buzz has grown over the lack of new footage, leading to speculation that there may be a problem with the production of special effects.

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See ya at WonderCon SF, and that's no April Food's Day joke.

Oakland: John Russo To Alameda Decision Reversed, Russo To Remain In Oakland

Earlier this week it was announced that Oakland City Attorney John Russo was leaving his post in Oakland to become Alameda's City Manager. Now, according to sources, that decision has been reversed, and by Russo himself.

"I can't tun away from the unfinished work around the Gang Injuction issue," Russo said early this morning. And Mayor Quan and certain councilmembers need a breakwater; someone to make sure they're not taking the city down the wrong legal path. That's where I come in."

This space isn't surprised that Russo changed his course. In a recent video interview for, it was clear the avid Oakland A's baseball fan from Brooklyn wasn't looking forward to making the change. When asked about the possible Alameda move, Russo would only say "How 'bout those A's!"

Of course, Russo said more than that; the video's 31 minutes long.


The announcements' certain to come as a shock to Alameda Officials, who were excited to be able to quickly move beyond the less-than-stellar tenure of now former City Manager Ann Marie Gallant.

As of this writing, Mayor Quan had no comment, but you can guess she's not happy today. Reportedly, Mayor Quan said "Oh, my. John's really going to be a thorn in my Lirpa Sloof."

Stay tuned,