COMIC-CONComic-Con Kicks Off

Fans of comic books, anime, science-fiction and horror have descended upon San Diego, Calif. for the 2004 edition of Comic-Con, a four-day geek fest featuring screenings, merchandise and in-person appearances by the creators and stars of many genre favorites. The doors of the San Diego Convention Center officially opened to attendees today.

For anime lovers, Comic-Con provides a showcase for such popular franchises as Initial D, Last Exile, Wolf’s Rain, Gungrave, Patlabor, DragonBall GT, RahXpheon, Ghost in the Shell, Inuyasha, Excel Saga, GTO, Love Hina, Chobits and tons more. For the full anime program, see www.comic-con.org/Pages/CCIAnime.html.

Among the special guests scheduled to make appearances at the confab are legendary animation voice actor June Foray, best known as the voice of Rocky the Flying Squirrel; cartoonist and independent animator Bill Plympton (Hair High, Mutant Aliens, I Married a Strange Person); renowned science fiction writer Ray Bradbury (Fahrenheit 451); Invader Zim scribe Roman Dirge; Famous Monsters of Filmland publisher Forest J, Ackerman; graphic novel pioneer Will Eisner (The Spirit, A Contract with God, Heart of the Storm, The Name of the Game, Dropsie Avenue); Hellboy creator Mike Mignola; Aaron McGruder, creator of The Boondocks comic strip; and Jean Schulz, widow of beloved Peanuts creator Charles Schulz, to name a few.

Other film and TV projects that will have a strong presence at the confab include Paramount’s Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events and the SpongeBob Squarepants Movie; 20th Century Fox’s Elektra, Fantastic Four and Alien vs. Predator, New Line’s Blade: Trinity and the extended DVD version of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King; Disney’s W.I.T.C.H., The Incredibles and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy; Warner Bros’ Constantine and Batman Begins; Universal’s The Grudge and the Joss Whedon feature, Serenity; Dimension’s Frank Miller’s Sin City; Sci Fi Channel’s Battlestar Galactica, Stargate Atlantis and Farscape; Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim; Comedy Central’s Drawn Together; Warner Bros. Animation’s Justice League Unlimited, Teen Titans, The Batman and Krypto; Nickelodeon’s Avatar and Danny Phantom, and Miramax’s Bionicle 2.

For more details on the 35th annual Comic-Con, see www.comic-con.org. If you’re going to the show, don’t forget to stop by the Animation Magazine booth (#5370) for a copy of our latest issue, featuring all the latest in the convergence of comics and animation, as well as a day in the life of comic book legend Stan Lee.