Some would argue that the San Diego Comic-Con is the king of all comic conventions, and that may not be far from the truth. Every year the annual event showcases the biggest and best new surprises in the world of superheroes, sci fi, and comic books in general on both the big and small screen and on paper and toy shelves. With many exciting announcements involving the film world this year I took a look at some of the most exciting for my latest top ten, the best film-based surprises and reveals of San Diego Comic-Con 2017.
Each year studios like Marvel and DC among other film companies come together to debut new sneak peaks at already established projects or reveal new details on upcoming films to get fans excited about what’s to come. From trailers to cast reveals and sneak peaks, San Diego Comic-Con offered an opportunity for visitors to be the first to experience these surprises before the rest of the world. For this list I looked at the ten most exciting, surprising, and interesting reveals of the convention, whether that’s a new trailer, an actor being revealed to join a cast, or details about a movies plot etc.
These reveals MUST be public information as of this list, so while there are bootleg copies of the “Avengers: Infinity War” sneak peak floating around on the internet and social media Marvel has not officially made this material public beyond Comic-Con itself so it does not count for this list. Also the announcement of “Wonder Woman II” won’t be here because there were already unofficial announcements from the studio itself of plans to make the film, so it’s not too much of a surprise really and acted as more of a confirmation than a pleasant surprise. Plus all they said was, “we’re making a sequel” so there’s not much to go on with that fact.
What announcement or reveal from Comic-Con got you all excited for what’s to come in the world of film? Let me know in the comments below and enjoy the list.
10. Big Names Join the “Ant-Man” Sequel
Marvel’s “Ant-Man” was a huge hit in 2015, showcasing one of the company’s more unique properties before “Captain America: Civil War” became a phenomenon. Almost immediately after the first film was released a sequel, “Ant-Man and the Wasp”, was announced with many big names returning for the 2018 follow-up. Now we know even more big names will join the cast as well with Michelle Pfeiffer and Lawrence Fushburne making their Marvel Cinematic Universe debuts as the original Wasp Janet van Dyne and Dr. Bill Foster, aka the Black Goliath, respectively. Walton Goggins was also named to portray Sonny Birch, a villain from the Marvel comics who once chairs Cross Technologies, the same fictional company featured in the first “Ant-Man” film. What makes this announcement a fun one is that both Pfeiffer and Fishburne are more known for their commitments to DC films, with Pfeiffer portraying the most popular on-screen version of Catwoman in the 90s and Fishburne playing Perry White in the DC Extended Universe. It won’t be Fishburne’s first Marvel film however as he voiced the Silver Surfer in the original “Fantastic Four” sequel, but it’s his first time in the MCU. The casting of these two actors as well as Goggins provided some detail into the possible directions that the sequel film will go. It’s unclear who the villain of the film will be, so knowing that Birch and the Black Goliath will be a part of the project offers some possible answers on who the main antagonist will be when Ant-Man teams up with The Wasp following the events of “Civil War”. Knowing Janet van Dyne will appear means there will either probably be a flashback unless Marvel decides to find some way to resurrect the heroine from her infinite shrinking explained in the first film.
9. Netflix Going “Bright”
Netflix keeps experimenting with more and more interesting film concepts as it works to be taken seriously as a provider of original long-form content. Later this year one of the company’s most talked-about projects will be debuted in the form of “Bright”, an urban fantasy crime thriller starring Will Smith as an LAPD officer in a world filled with imaginary creatures like fairies and orcs. The first look at the film through a trailer released during Comic-Con reveals Smith’s eccentric character and offers glimpses in a world of fairy tale monsters and beings that coexist with humans in a world relatively close to what society looks like today. It’s a fantastic and exciting early look at a big-budget offering from Netflix that includes a big name star and a unique premise that could spell massive success for the streaming service. Many have been talking about Netflix bringing this film to the masses for months and now that we have the first look, anticipation is growing and we can’t wait to see if “Bright” will live up to the hype. One thing’s for sure, it promise to be a fantasy epic and crime thriller like few before it mixing fantasy with reality to create something gritty and new. You can view the trailer itself above.
8. “The Kingsman 2” Red-Band Trailer
With around two months still remaining before the film hits theaters, the second trailer for “Kingsman: The Golden Circle” debuted at Comic-Con and it was a red band trailer at that offering violence and vulgar language in all its glory. The trailer gives a much more in depth look at what the film will offer with more detailed shots of the cast and their many different creative weapons as well as a great presentation of the bloodshed and action we can expect to see unfold. This is clearly a film that promises much more exhilarating than its already magnificent predecessor and if this trailer is any indication it’s also going to be a stylish and funny followup as well throwing clichés of both America and Britain into the mix for some added self-referential humor. While the teaser trailer that dropped a while ago was a great peak into what’s to come, this new trailer is even more exciting as we finally get a REAL look at the epic action that awaits as Eggsy and his friend, old and new, take on a new threat to the world. The fact that it was a red band trailer was an added bonus for fans at Comic-Con who probably didn’t expect they’d see a much more legitimate presentation of the comedy, violence, and language that will litter this potential big-screen hit.
7. Captain Marvel will be a 90s Chick
DC may have finally gotten one over on Marvel with its smash female led project “Wonder Woman” earlier this year, but Marvel is not far behind with the much-anticipated “Captain Marvel” set to his theater in 2019. Rumors have it that the heroine, who will be portrayed by Brie Larson, will make her debut in the upcoming “Avengers: Infinity War” film but when Captain Marvel gets her own cinematic adventure it will take viewers back in time to the 1990s to explore her origin story. The Marvel Comic-Con panel revealed that “Captain Marvel” will be set in the 90s and that Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury will be a mentor to Captain Marvel without his iconic eye-patch, meaning the events will predate whatever cost him his eye and MAYEB even explore what happened to earn him such a scar. We’ve only seen a few glimpses of the past in the MCU with flashbacks and “Captain America: The First Avenger” being our only look at the dawn of the world before Iron Man made his debut. This new tidbit will make Captain Marvel the second film in chronological order in the MCU. Also revealed were the enemies the captain will face, the Skrull, an alien race that have long been a part of the Marvel comic canon. Concept art was debut at Comic-Con that showed Larson in her superhero suit punching one of the aliens to the ground, the first shot of any kind to truly show audiences what we can expect from this still developing female-driven hero tale. To this point all we had were fan-art and digital art showing possibilities of what the uniform would look like. Larson herself posted a picture of the officially released uniform photo on her Instagram as shown above.
6. The Return of Jigsaw
It’s been a LONG time since we’ve seen Jigsaw on the big screen with the completion of the “Saw” series in 2010. You can’t keep a good franchise down however and while many have heard of a 2017 revival of the franchise we finally got our trailer confirmation only DAYS after the title “Jigsaw” was confirmed as a possible title. The first trailer for the continuation of the horror legacy debuted at Comic-Con despite Lionsgate having no real panel during the event. Still, they made quite an impact showcasing a teaser trailer for this Halloween’s must-see reboot film with new traps and possibly a new disciple of Jigsaw on the loose. While some might argue this is not an OFFICIAL Comic-Con trailer due to it hitting the internet to some extent before the actual first day of the event, it was officially debuted at Comic-Con so it counts and it’s done its job getting people pumped for a new legacy to begin in one of the most enduring modern horror franchises to this day. The trailer quickly made the rounds online, but at Comic-Con itself it offered a surprise treat for those looking for something a little different to celebrate and was a MUCH more welcome Halloween-themed surprise than the new “Madea” movie….ugh. You can watch the trailer for “Jigsaw” above.
5. The “Infinity War” Poster
While the official sneak peak at “The Avengers: Infinity War” has not officially been release yet, we do get SOMETHING to wet our appetites with a poster featuring new looks for many of Marvel big-screen characters who will be involved in the epic battle.
The poster includes the Guardians of the Galaxy, Thor, the Hulk, Iron Man, Scarlet Witch, The Vision, Hawkeye, Doctor Strange, Spider-Man, the Winter Soldier, War Machine, the Black Panther, and blond Black Widow, and a newly facial-haired Captain America, and even Loki. The poster also shows Thanos with the Infinity Stones and Infinity Gauntlet as well as presenting some of his Black Order who made their own debut at Comic-Con for the big screen epic. While we have heard a lot about the film this is the first REAL teaser we get at this epic team-up, which is the culmination of ten years of the MCU. The poster shows a likely change for Black Widow and Steve Rogers, who is rumored to be dropping his Captain persona in favor of the Nomad identity from the comics, and hints at different factions of heroes possibly defending the different Infinity Stones from Thanos as he tries to achieve his ultimate power. It’s a small hint at what’s to come but considering how secretive Disney and Marvel are being with the actual teaser material, this is better than nothing. Few single posters can tell as much as this one does and, if you chose to read into it the way Marvel probably wants you too, it’s almost as exciting and intriguing as the sneak peak itself will be once the public has the opportunity to enjoy it.
4. “Thor Ragnarok” Trailer
The third solo “Thor” film in the MCU saw a teaser trailer released earlier this year to MASSIVE success, but the OFFICIAL trailer finally hit the internet after making its debut at Comic-Con, expanding on the short original sneak peak by showing us more of Hela, the big baddie of the film, and revealing that Thor will be bringing together his own super team to take on the evil Goddess of Death with the fate of Asgard hanging in the balance. Once again Marvel shows it has a sense of humor and style with fans getting their first peak at an armored Valkyrie and the new weapons and set pieces that will make up Thor’s third adventure. We also see Thor team up with his brother Loki in utilizing some pretty heavy firepower AND we get a look at Surtur, the fire demon who will no doubt be of help to Hela. Possibly the best part of this trailer are us finally hearing the Hulk have a conversation, throwing some zingers at his friendly rival Thor, and a show of a mega powered Thor with lightning coursing through him that I think is the money shot of possibly the entire film. “Thor” has kind of been the less popular stepchild of the other stand-alone heroes in the Avengers in years past. It looks like we may finally have a story that will elevate the god of thunder’s solo series to a new level of legitimacy within the MCU.
3. The new “Justice League” trailer
Lets face it, DC is getting better at this whole movie universe thing and with “Wonder Woman” being such a hit, they may have a pair of epics on their hands with the “Justice League” film set to hit the big screen in November. We got a trailer for the film earlier this year, but this extended look gives us a much better view of the action that will make up the superhero team up. We get our first major look at the villain Steppenwolf and even a few Easter eggs as the Green Lanterns get their first mention in the DC Extended Universe and a mysterious being is acknowledged by Alfred at the end hinting that the League will get bigger by the films climax, maybe with the resurrection of Superman and/or the arrival of a Green Lantern to assist in the fight. There’s so much to love from this trailer as we get to see almost every hero in action, we get a great sense of the humor that will come with the film, and we get some exciting teases that hint at the larger universe. This is what trailers are supposed to do and hopefully “Justice League” will live up to the promise this longer sneak peak provides. Watch that very trailer above if you wish.
2. “Pacific Rim” surprise trailer
Some trailers create buzz from pure quality or anticipation alone, however the best ones are the ones you don’t expect that manage to BLOW…YOUR…MIND!!!! That was the case with this trailer for the sequel to “Pacific Rim”, “Pacific Rim: Uprising”, which you can watch above. Playing like a commercial for the Jaeger fleet, the machines piloted by paired humans to fight off the Kaijus in the first film, the trailer is not just a call to action for soldiers but for the audience as well to join in what promises to be an epic continuation of the surprise success that was the original “Pacific Rim”. “Star Wars” actor John Boyega serves as the soldier calling viewers to action with the teaser embracing a style reminiscent to modern video game commercials. Few people expected this teaser to drop at Comic-Con, although there have been rumors surrounding the 2018 film for a while, making it a pleasant surprise for many from Universal and Legendary Pictures. The teaser also kicked off a promising viral campaign, directing viewers to gojaeger.com to join the cause. There’s grabbing attention and then there’s demanding it and this one certainly did just that. Speaking of demanding attention…
1. “Ready Player One”
Similar to “Pacific Rim: Uprising”, the first trailer for Steven Spielberg’s “Ready Player One” embraced a very unique style of presentation and truly demanded it be recognized, remembered, and watched over and over again. With the film being based on a novel that in itself is a love story to video game culture and Easter eggs within such games, there are PLENTY of Easter eggs to seek out in this trailer including cameos from the Iron Giant, the Tron bike, Freddie Kruger and more. The trailer is a call to gamers, comic book lovers, Millennial, and children at heart speaking directly to the viewers about how video games and fantasy worlds bend the limits of one’s imagination. Not only does this trailer embody the spirit of the source material and provide some major fanfare, it earns the #1 spot here because its epic scale, its promising Easter eggs, and its goose bump educing appeal to those at Comic-Con made it an instant semi-viral hit. It was unexpected, it was fresh, and it is a rare case where the theme of the film being shown truly embodies the same wonder and excitement of the crowd that makes up Comic-Con. The trailer asks viewers “are you ready?” and after this teaser we certainly are! Rarely has there ever been a more appropriate place or crowd to debut a sneak peak at a project. What better place to show off an adventure in the virtual world than to those whose hobbies, interests, and obsessions are all based in fantasies and epics? This was truly the most appropriate preview for Comic-Con 2017.