VAN HELSING AT COMIC-CON
USA Today talks about how the San Diego Comic-Con is being used to hype upcoming films:
Comic-Con International, which begins today in San Diego and runs through Sunday, draws 65,000 people a year ? 5,000 of them producers, screenwriters and movie executives looking for the next big franchise in horror, animation and comic books.
'It is the single most important gathering on the West Coast, if not the country, of genre fans,' says Rob Friedman, vice chairman of Paramount Pictures.
Hollywood didn't pay much attention to the convention until the mid-1970s, when directing legend and comic fan Frank Capra began showing up to talk superheroes. Since then, the convention has become as essential to studios as the Cannes Film Festival and the ShoWest exhibit for theater owners.
Films including Road to Perdition and From Hell were propelled to the big screen after the graphic novels were hits at Comic-Con.
Bob Ducsay, producer of the horror film Van Helsing, which is due in May 2004, rushed to get clips of his movie together for the convention.
'We just finished shooting last week, but the convention is that important. The best way to get your movie serious buzz early on is to make a good impression there.'
Clout stems from the boom in comic-book films and the surging power that film fans are exerting over the Internet.
'They will be at home the day after Comic-Con giving their opinions on their Web pages,' convention spokesman David Glanzer says.
Courtesy of Coming Soon