Saturday, October 15, 2011

New York Comicon Day 2 and 3 plus a few words on the closing days of the New York Film Festival

Its been a hectic couple of days.

A family emergency kept me from attending the the New York Comicon yesterday as well as some screenings at the New York Film Festival (more on that below). Mondocurry was there and is planning on filing his own report on the whole affair when he's done with his three days of madness. In the mean time my spies report that it was a quite low key day with little to report.

On the way to the Javitts center I watched a person in a Star Wars costume freak out several people on a walk to raise funds for a cancer charity. The double and triple takes were hysterical and made me wish I had a camera.

Also amusing was a person costumed as Boba Fett sitting on a street corner playing the accordion...Star Wars tunes of course....

Then there was the topless woman dressed as Salvador Dali...

Inside the Javitts Center things were hopping. Because they spread out more things were still crowded but not as bad as in past years.... It was still tough to get around but not like last year where it was so bad that you could be moved around by the weight of the crowd.

The Anime Festival section was okay. I was amused by the lines to the bathrooms since they looked like all of the anime and manga characters got off their pages because they had to pee at the same time. Its really surreal.

The only panel I went to was the one for the up coming Liar's Autobiography, and animated version of the life of Graham Chapman. Its being produced in part by Epix.

The presentation was announced as being bawdy if not not down right filthy. They gave a disclaimer which promised Strong Sexual Content (cheers), Profanity(cheers), nudity (cheers), adult situations (cheers) and racy raunchy and rude material (wild applause)

Hosted by Lloyd Kaufman of Troma Films the panel was a great deal of fun. It began with a cut of Graham being brought out and Kaufman reading a letter from Graham who said he wanted to be there but couldn't since he's been dead for 22 years.

The panel was made up of the three directors Jeff Simpson, Ben Timbell (I may have written that wrong so for give me) and Bill Jones (son of Python Terry), as well as two of the New York Based animation studio that did some of the animation.

Jeff ca,e up with the idea, wanting to do a bio pf Chapman and the others came aboard after. The idea was to do a documentary but there wasn't a great deal of old photos or film that hasn't been seen...however Grahams boyfriend said there were audio tapes, specifically the recording Chapman made of his autobiography. They then used it as the basis of a film where Graham talks to John Cleese about his life.

The film is being done as 3D animation and incorporates 17 styles by 15 animation companies. The idea to was to match the flowing nature of Graham's tale. They only thing they couldn't do was typical Terry Gilliam style since he refused to animate anything for the film (though he does some voices-despite never really vocally acting before.) Styles are CGI, Stop Motion, oil paint on Glass as well as every other type you can think of. They showed stills and it looks great.

The hook of the film is that Chapman was openly gay but a secret drunk. The change came when the Pythons basically told him to dry out or they wouldn't work with them. He did and it changed him.(an aside all the pythons except Eric Idle are involved, however that may change)

They showed two clips, one CGI piece of Chapman as a boy in the backseat of a car while on holiday with his parents, and the other a very rude version of Sit on my Face which goes into Grahams sexual exploits.(Graham said he was 70% gay and 30% straight) If you're offended by the thought of gay sex stay away...

The q&A produced two great moments, first when someone said they wanted to ask Graham a question but decided against it because he was looking rather stiff. Some yelled "too Soon" and the rest of the audience roared.

The other moment was the appearance of a group of Ghostbusters who wanted to know if anyone saw Graham because they were called to deal with a Graham ghost sighting.

The film looks great ad I can't wait to see it. I;m also going to have to get on the Liar's Autobiography Facebook page and see if I can be seen in the video of the audience singing Sit on My Face.

After that I wandered, tried to get into panels, but was rebuffed due to all the seats being full.

On the way out I finally ran into Mondocurry and Mr C who were attending Cartoon Network panels. We then plotted getting together tomorrow.

It was fun. It was a blast...and I get to do it all over again tomorrow.


The family emergency I spoke with has cut short my time at the New York Film Festival. Its nothing serious just more an annoyance than anything- at least in retrospect. This has kept me away from many of the final press screenings, and made me too tired to attended tonight's Buckaroo Bonzai screening.(I may not attend tomorrow's Wim Wenders talk either- but we'll see)

Not to worry coverage is still coming, John has several reviews going up during the first part of the week coming up.(They are great pieces so you'll want to read them). I'm also going to post a final look back piece with in a week or so.

That's it for now. Time for bed for me so I can go back into Manhattan and see more things you might want to hear about.

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