Wednesday, August 2, 2017

San Diego Comic-Con report, Part 2

I told you I'd be back with my own report on the epic San Diego Comic-Con - and here I am about a week later.  Sorry about that but, I had to take a little detour up to Oregon. My thanks to my office manager for filing his report in my absence.

So this year was a banner year for Plymptoons at the Con.  I took part in a panel for Animation Magazine about the future of animation, moderated by editor Ramin Zahed.  The panel included Yvette Kaplan, Butch Harmon, and Shannon Tindle in addition to myself.  We had a packed house that seemed to bode well for the medium's future.

Then I screened two of my films - "Cop Dog", my new short, was shown in the Comic-Con Film Festival to a tiny crowd of about 20 people, who all loved it.  And then on Friday night we also screened "Revengeance" - but unfortunately we were scheduled for 10:45 pm, when many people are either attending parties or events, or maybe even going to bed after a long day at the convention.  They also listed the wrong time in the main program, so as a result we only had about 50 people there.

                              Jim Lujan and Ken Mora (center) at the "Revengeance" screening
                                     at the Marriott Marquis, with cast members and friends

But the big hit was the Plympton panel - I showed the latest Simpsons Couch Gag, my new ecological short "No Snow for Christmas", a trailer for my new work-in-progress feature "Slide", and the first of my 6-part epic music video series for blues rocker Jackie Greene.  As the topper, both Jim Lujan and Matthew Modine were with me for the panel, and also helped me introduce the trailer for "Revengeance", which the audience loved!!  Matthew talked about working with Kubrick on "Full Metal Jacket", I talked about "Slide" and "Revengeance" and Jim kept everyone laughing.  It was a love fest riot!

                       On the "Beyond Revengeance" panel with Jim Lujan and Matthew Modine.

                                                           Matthew Modine in my booth!

Our booth was busy, although not quite as busy as last year.  The big sellers this year were my original animation art, and the caricatures I drew for the fans.  At one particularly busy period, I had a big group of people waiting to either buy or chat, and I was right in the middle of drawing a caricature.  Then my son Lucas yelled at me, "Daddy, I have to poop!"  My wife Sandrine was far away, wandering the aisles and only John H. was with me in the booth  - so I had to tell everyone to excuse me while I took my son to the bathroom.  Surprisingly, after that emergency, everyone was still waiting at the booth to get their signature or drawings.

A lot of my good friends were there - Spike, Steve Tenhonen, Jerry Beck, Vicky Jenson (director of "Shrek" and "Shark Tale"), David Chelsea, Rick Geary and one of my super-successful Animation School students, Brian Giovanni.

                                                       with animation historian Jerry Beck

                                             with Vicky Jenson of "Shrek" and "Shark Tale" fame

                                           with author/illustrator David Chelsea and his sister

                                   with Brian Giovanni, one of my Plympton Animation students

Also every year Bobby and Kei Chiu hold a dinner party at a Brazilian restaurant, with exotic dancers and lots of roasted meat.  The group was filled with friends like Shannon Tindle, Chris Prynoski from Titmouse, and Pascal Campion - so it was great to catch up with them, since I live so far away.

                                              with Bobby Chiu at the Brazilian restaurant

                                                 with Kei Chiu at the Brazilian restaurant

                                                         with illustrator Pascal Campion at dinner

                                                          with Chris Prynoski from Titmouse          

I love San Diego and the Comic-Con, but it's getting too expensive to travel there and ship my merchandise back and forth, in addition to the cost of getting the booth.  So I don't know if I'll be coming back, I guess we'll see.

I want to thank all of my boothmates - John Holderried, Jim Lujan, Ken Mora, Matthew Modine, Sandrine and Lucas - and especially Kurt and Lori Jerman, who put us up for 4 days.

--Bill Plympton

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