SDCC: Comic-Con: Disney 3D Hits Hall H!

ON has gotten into the 6,500 seat Hall H at Comic-Con and we’re waiting for Walt Disney’s 3D presentation to begin, which will include new footage from Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland, Disney’s A Christmas Carol, directed by Robert Zemeckis, and the action sequel TRON. The panel moderated by Patton Oswalt should be starting shortly and we’ll try our best to liveblog it, although the Wi-Fi in Hall H this year is horrendous!

*Panel just started… place is packed… already lost my 3D glasses… but found them again. Been hearing about people having arrived and stood in Hall H as early as yesterday afternoon. Some of our colleagues got in line at 7AM and only got in around 11AM.

*Patton Oswalt just came out to host the event wearing 3D glasses. Incidentally, this is indeed the very first 3D presentation in Hall H ever, which may be why it’s so packed. Oswalt is definitely winning the crowd over with his jokes.

*First up is A Christmas Carol and director Robert Zemeckis is on hand to present the 3D footage. Oswalt is asking him why he’s excited about 3D. They’re sitting on high chairs like on “Inside the Actor’s Studio” and this is a very different set-up than in previous years with one large screen in the center of the Hall rather than three smaller screens.

*Jim Carrey plays 8 roles in the movie and they have pictures of all of them on the screen. Wish I could keep up with Oswalt’s jokes, but he’s actually giving a fairly good interview with Zemeckis which we’ll try to post highlights of later.

*Zemeckis showed an extended scene that includes the footage of Scrooge being visited by the ghost of his late partner Jacob Marley. It starts earlier with Scrooge visiting Marley lying in a coffin with coins on his eyes and signing the death certificate. It then shows Scrooge returning home and walking up the staircase which is glowing eerily in red. The rest of the clip was pretty much what we had seen with the long build-up to the entrance by Marley’s Ghost as well as some of the footage that shows the various ghosts, much of which can be seen in the trailer. The 3D footage actually looked better than the same footage we saw in IMAX a few months ago, the smaller screen really bringing out the detail on Scrooge’s wrinkled face since it isn’t stretched out to fit the larger IMAX screen.

*They’ve gone to Q n A and Zemeckis is answering a lot of the obvious questions about why he cast Jim and why he decided to do it animated using motion capture. He said that he didn’t feel that anytime while doing motion capture that he thought they didn’t have what they needed from Jim Carrey’s performance to do what they need to do in animation. He was just asked whether he’d be doing any more live action movies and right now he’s into “sending this artform out into the world” because he likes the “control this artform gives the director.”

*Zemeckis was just asked if he’d ever make a sequel to Who Framed Roger Rabbit? but he said that he “can’t confirm or deny.” He said that the 2D animated characters from the original movie would remain in 2D if he did decide to revisit those characters in a new movie.

*Next up is Tim Burton making his first Comic-Con panel appearance ever and he got a huge round of applause… he obviously has a lot of fans in this crowd. He says that he hasn’t been here since he was a college student in the 70s.

*They just showed the character pictures from Alice in Wonderland including Matt (“Little Britain”) Lucas’ Tweedledum and Tweedledee, which looks like a shorter dumpier version of Lucas. Oswalt has asked him about why he picked Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter and they showed concept art for the Chesire Cat, voiced by Stephen Fry.

*They showed the first teaser trailer for the movie which starts with the image of Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter and the voice-over “There is a place like no other place on earth.” His Mad Hatter walks across the table set up for the Tea Party and towers over Alice saying “You’re terribly late you know. Naughty.” The footage accompanied by MGMT’s “Let’s Pretend” (great choice!) includes a bit of Alice falling down the Rabbit Hole and then we see her walking through a forrest, following the White Rabbit, in turn followed by Tweedledum and Tweedledee and the Jabberwocky. A later scene shows the Jabberwocky swooping down and grabbing the twins. After that, we see a shot of Alice and Anne Hathaway’s White Queen on a terrace looking over the kingdom and a brief look at Helena Bonham Carter’s Red Queen. We see a few shots of the Chesire Cat, including one where he’s roaring like a lion. The audience goes wild whenever Johnny Depp appears on the screen as the Hatter, throwing his top hat at the camera and laughing maniacally. Towards the end of the footage, we see Alice drinking the potion that causes her to shrink with her voiceover saying “That’s Impossible” and the Mad Hatter responding “Only if you believe it is.” Oswalt immediately showed the teaser again to great applause… and a third time!

*Burton says that the movie is based on all of Lewis Carroll’s works including the “Jabberwocky” poem, not just the best known original “Alice” novel.

*After the brief Q n A, Oswalt asked if he had anything else and he said he brought an “Imaginary friend” and Johnny Depp walked out to HUGE screams from the ladies in the audience. Apparently, Johnny isn’t able to enjoy the 3D experience, according to Burton.

*Next up is the Tron Legacy panel and apparently, that is the OFFICIAL title for the new film. Director Joseph Kosinski is on hand, as is producer Sean Bailey and Steve Lisberger. From the cast is Garrett Hedlund, Olivia Wilde and of course, the veteran from the first film, Jeff Bridges.

*They just showed concept art from the world of Tron City including a view down from the top of Mile High Tower and a look at the arena for the city’s gladiatorial games including an update of Disc War, which features 16 combatants fighting at once and then the courts combining as someone is eliminated to create one giant count for the final battle. They also showed shots of the new Recognizer, the Solar Sailor, the two-passenger Light Runner, and the 5th Generation light cycle.

*They just finished filming last week but Joe had cut together a key scene in which Hedlund’s Sean Flynn arrives at the old Flynn’s arcade which has been abandoned for 20 years.The place has clearly been vacant for a long time and all the arcade games are covered in plastic but he flicks on the power and the jukebox kicks into the opening of Journey’s “Separate Ways” which was in the original Tron as all of the games comes to life. He sees a blue light emanating from the back wall so he walks back towards it and takes the plastic off the game and it’s the original Tron arcade game. He takes out a quarter to play it but it drops to the floor and he sees a crack on the floor and realizes that it goes behind the console. He pushes the game aside and there’s a secret door with blue light glowing from the cracks and he opens it up and walks in.

*French techno band Daft Punk has composed 24 tracks for the movie so far.

That’s it for now… battery is running out of juice but hope to write more later.