San Diego Comic-Con is epic! There’s no other way to truly describe it. It’s one of those events you simply have to attend in order to get the full effect. Words really don’t do it justice. This will be my 16th consecutive year attending, and while the convention is all about pop culture, cosplay, and the arts in general, it should come as no surprise that the big draw for yours truly is the big film presentations. Of course, this year will see a handful of noteworthy television panels as well. Here’s a look at five must-see San Diego Comic-Con presentations.
“Ready Player One”
That’s right! Steven Spielberg will be on hand at Comic-Con for the first time since 2011’s “The Adventures of Tintin” presentation. This is no doubt the biggest draw at the entire convention for me this year, because I love me some Steven Spielberg! The Beard will be present to talk about his latest big-screen venture, a much anticipated adaptation of Ernest Cline’s uber-popular novel “Ready Player One.” Fans have yet to see a lick of footage from this movie, meaning that this is going to be quite the epic exclusive.
Blade Runner 2049
Hot on the heels of a stunning, brand-new trailer, Warner Brothers is set to deliver more “Blade Runner 2049” greatness at Comic-Con! With any luck, attendees will be treated to new footage from the highly anticipated sequel. Will that footage be unveiled by way of a featurette or an actual sequence from the movie? That’s anybody’s guess. All I know is that whatever the studio has up its sleeve, it’s going to be spectacular. It’s also safe to say that Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford, and Denis Villeneuve will be on hand to dish on what is looking to be quite a breathtaking vision of the future. It should also be noted that WB will be hosting an offsite “Blade Runner 2049” virtual reality experience at the convention this year!
No Warner Brothers Comic-Con shindig would be complete without a look at DC Entertainment. The question is, what is the mood going to be like during this portion of the presentation. Due to an unforeseen family tragedy, director Zack Snyder decided to step away from “The Justice League.” WB brought in Joss Whedon to oversee re-shoots and the overall completion of this highly anticipated all-star DC superhero opus. Will Snyder be in attendance? Will Whedon be on hand? No telling at this point, but it’s safe to say that members of the cast will be there, and you can count on the studio dropping some brand new footage as well. Elsewhere, DC also has a little movie called “Aquaman” in production, so you can bet star Jason Momoa and director James Wan will be making an appearance too!
“Stranger Things” season two
Netflix has a huge presence at Comic-Con this year. The popular streaming service will be profiling everything from “Bright” and “Death Note” to the upcoming Marvel series “The Defenders,” but the biggest Netflix panel at Comic-Con 2017 will arguably be “Stranger Things.” This nostalgia-laced throwback to the likes of ’80s era Spielberg, John Carpenter, and Stephen King (with a little “X-Files” thrown in for good measure) took the world by storm when it debuted last year, and rightfully so. For my money, this addictive series was everything J.J. Abrams’ well-intentioned “Super 8” aspired to be. This show was so popular, in fact, that it just bagged a handful of much-deserved Emmy nominations, including one for Best Series and acting nods for David Harbour and young Millie Bobby Brown. Season two is set to debut Oct. 27! Perfect timing as this second round of “Stranger Things” takes place during Halloween, leaving room for even more John Carpenter-inspired winks.
David Lynch at Comic-Con? Yes, please! Fittingly, this “Twin Peaks” presentation is being referred to as “A Damn Good Panel.” How great is that? Now, admittedly I have yet to see a new episode of the series (I know, I have no excuse!), but I have seen the original episodes as well as “Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me” plus I consider myself quite the David Lynch fan in general! In particular, I love “Eraserhead,” “Wild at Heart,” “Mulholland Drive,” and “The Straight Story,” and I count Lynch’s adaptation of “The Elephant Man” among the greatest movies ever made! This presentation is all about “Twin Peaks,” though, and with any luck, “A Damn Good Panel” will be every bit as wild, quirky, and surreal as the show that inspired it! Sidenote: As a bonus, Lynch and crew will drop an advance screening of “Twin Peaks” episode 11 at Comic-Con!
Be sure to watch for my 2017 Comic-Con Highlights piece following the convention. 2017 Comic-Con International runs from July 19 through July 23 in San Diego. For a look at the entire programming lineup, click here.