Yes, we know, some of the big players are sitting this year’s edition of Comic-Con International out (we see you, Sony, Warner Bros.’ DC and Universal!) … but there are still so many fantastic screenings, panels and nerdilicious events happening at this year’s pop culture extravaganza, which takes place in San Diego (July 17-21). Here are a few animation and VFX-driven events you need to put on your calendar. The lines may be long, but the rewards will be sweet!a
Nick Celebrates SpongeBob’s 20th and TMNT creators
Everyone’s excited about the 20th anniversary of Nick’s yellow, absorbent superstar. The cabler is paying homage to SpongeBob SquarePants at its 1,800 square-foot booth (#4113) on the convention floor with activations, panels, talent signings and interactive design elements. Don’t miss the “SpongeBob’s Big Birthday Blowout! Panel,” featuring co-executive producers Vincent Waller and Marc Ceccarelli, voice actors Tom Kenny (SpongeBob), Bill Fagerbakke (Patrick), Rodger Bumpass (Squidward), Carolyn Lawrence (Sandy), Mr. Lawrence (Plankton) and Clancy Brown (Mr. Krabs), who’ll discuss what it was like to portray their characters in front of the camera for the first time in the live-action/animation hybrid special. Also on tap is “To Shell and Back: An exclusive TMNT creator panel” featuring three generations of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles creators, including co-executive producers Andy Suriano and Ant Ward (Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), executive producer Ciro Nieli (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), and legendary TMNT co-creator Kevin Eastman.
Disney Channel is planning an awesome DuckTales panel on Friday at 11:45 a.m. in Room 6A. Scheduled to appear are stars Ben Schwartz (Dewey), Bobby Moynihan (Louie), Kate Micucci (Webby) and Paget Brewster (Della Duck), along with Matt Youngberg (executive producer) and Francisco Angones (co-producer/story editor), who will discuss the epic adventures planned for season three and share new footage from never-before-seen episodes. Limited autograph signing will follow. (New DuckTales episodes will debut in September on Disney Channel and DisneyNOW.)
FOX TV’s New and Classic Toons
On Friday at 11 a.m. in the Indigo Ballroom, TV toon fans can find out all about the new addition to the Fox Sunday night lineup, Bless the Harts, a wild show about a good ol’ Southern family, which features the voices of Kristen Wig (Jenny Hart), Maya Rudolph (Betty), Jillian Bell (Violet) and Ike Barinholtz (Wayne). The show is exec produced by Emily Spivey (SNL, Parks and Recreation) and Phil Lord & Chris Miller (Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, The LEGO Movie).
Then at 3 p.m, it’s time for the Solar Opposites panel, another new offering about a family of aliens who take refuge in middle America. Set to appear are Justin Roiland (Rick and Morty), Sean Giambrone (The Goldbergs) and Mary Mack (Golan the Insatiable), along with executive producers Mike McMahan (Rick and Morty) and Josh Bycel (Happy Endings). The series will debut on Hulu in 2020.
You’d better stay in the Indigo Ballroom for the 4 p.m. Bob’s Burgers panel, which promises to offer lots of funny moments, awesome surprises and never-before-seen footage. Scheduled to brighten your day are creator/exec producer Loren Bouchard, exec producer Nora Smith, and cast members H. Jon Benjamin, Dan Mintz, John Roberts, Kristen Schaal, Larry Murphy and Megan Mullally.
Vintage FOX classics The Simpsons, American Dad! and Family Guy panels are all scheduled for Saturday from noon until 2:15 in Ballroom 20. Matt Groening, Al Jean, Mike B. Anderson, Stephanie Gillis, Yeardley Smith, Rachael MacFarlane, Scott Grimes, Dee Bradley Baker, Kevin Michael Richardson, Matt Weitzman, Kara Vallow, Jeff Kauffmann, Seth MacFarlane, Alex Borstein, Mike Henry, Rich Appel, Alec Sulkin and Kara Vallow are all scheduled to entertain us with their wonderful stories and clever insights. The Orville fans will also get their favorite sci-fi comedy fêted at 2:30, with a panel of stars and producers (Seth MacFarlane, Adrianne Palicki, Penny Johnson Jerald, Scott Grimes, Peter Macon, Jessica Szohr, J. Lee, Mark Jackson, Chad L. Coleman, David A. Goodman, Jon Cassar and Brannon Braga) offering a sneak peek at the popular show’s third season.
DC Universe Dominates
Warner Bros. Television Group (WBTVG) has a huge presence at the Con this year, including the final SDCC appearances of long-running hit WBTV series Arrow and Supernatural, as well as the world premiere screenings of highly anticipated DCTV series Batwoman and Pennyworth. Representing super-powered animation will be Young Justice: Outsiders, Teen Titans GO!, DC Super Hero Girls and the upcoming comedy Harley Quinn, making its World Premiere on Preview Night. On Thursday at 3:15 p.m., there’s a new episode screening of Teen Titans GO! In Room 6DE and Q&A in Room 6DE. Friday at 12:30, it’s time for DC Super Hero Girls Brand-New Episode Screening and Q&A (Room 6DE), followed by Legacies Special Video Presentation and Q&A (Room 6BCF), Pennyworth Special Video Presentation and Q&A (Room 6BCF) and a Rooster Teeth Special Video Presentation and Q&A (Room 6DE) at 8 p.m. On Saturday at 10:30 a.m., Ballroom 20 is the place to be for the Batwoman pilot screening and Q&A. Then, it’s time for the Arrow special video presentation and Q&A at 3:30 p.m., and Supergirl at 4:15 p.m., followed by Black Lightning at 5 p.m., The Flash at 5:45 p.m. and DC Universe series sneak Preview at 7 p.m (Indigo Ballroom). The weekend wraps with Sunday Video Presentation and Q&As in Hall H for Supernatural at 10:30 a.m. and Riverdale at 11:45 a.m.
Your Next Netflix Obsessions
If bingeing on awesome fantasies is your drug of choice, then we recommend heading over to Hall H on Friday at 2:15 p.m., when Netflix will unveil its highly anticipated new show The Witcher with an exciting panel that will feature stars Henry Cavill, Anya Cholatra and Freya Allan, and show runner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich and will be moderated by Yvette Nicole Brown (Community, Mom). If this month’s article about the making of The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance has whetted your appetite for the show, then make sure you stay for the hot series’ panel on Friday at 3:30 p.m. in the famous Hall H., featuring many of the creators and stellar voice cast.
On Friday, July 19, some of Marvel Animation‘s biggest play will celebrates the studio’s 80th anniversary. Participants include Cort Lane (SVP, Animation and Family Entertainment), Kalia Ramirez (Director, Family Entertainment, Development & Partnerships), writers Mark Hoffmeier (Spider-Man: The Animated Series) and Marty Isenberg (X-Men: The Animated Series), and voice actors Josh Keaton and Jennifer Hale. A very cool in-memoriam look at Stan Lee‘s greatest animation moments will also be screened.
Popeye, Batman, Scooby-Doo, Teen Titans and More!
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment is planning an amazing packed four days at the Con this year, offering six world premieres (Batman: Hush, Teen Titans Go! vs. Teen Titans, LEGO DC: Batman – Family Matters, Scooby-Doo! Return to Zombie Island, The Banana Splits Movie and an in-depth Shazam! documentary), celebrating monumental anniversaries for Batman Beyond and Scooby-Doo, and creating immersive fan experiences for Detective Pikachu and Shazam! Let’s not forget special star-studded panels focusing on Popeye’s 90th birthday and spotlighting The Jetsons and landmark sci-fi show V: The Original Mini-Series, presented by Warner Archive Collection.