Wizard World has come and gone in St. Louis for the year, and it was an enjoyable time as ever. While a few of the bigger guests weren’t able to attend (Stan Lee, Michael Rosenbaum), there was still plenty to see and do.
I got a brief minute to talk with Jon Heder about the cultural impact and staying power of Napoleon Dynamite (the audio didn’t come out); he said that they made the movie with hopes of family enjoying it on holidays when it was finished. They didn’t know it was something special until after the release of the movie. He enjoys hearing about it being passed down to the next generation of movie viewers (like my 10 year old daughter).
They brought in stuff for the family. There were bands playing at the front of the convention center, along with a magician and a painter, at various points of the show. They also had booths for replica cars, wildlife, kids events, a rock climbing wall/mechanical bull, and sketch artist. The St. Louis R2 Builders had various functional astromech droids scooting around the show.
There was also a good amount of merchandise to purchase; artist had their prints available and shops from all over the country set up shop.
I only made it to 2 panels. The Lord of the Rings panel, where Sean Astin, Sean Bean, and Billy Boyd talked about the movie, was very entertaining. They discussed the movies, their interaction with fans, and more. Astin had a story about meeting Bean after Elijah Woods and him were playing Goldeneye on N64, where they would switch between playing 007 and 006. Bean talked about being type-casted as a villain or a character to be killed, and touched on his enjoyment of memes featuring his characters.
The other panel was YouTube 101 hosted by RealBreakingNate, a YouTube channel owner and a partner with Wizard. He went over the basics of running a channel and took questions from the audience, which was a little on the younger side.
The most enjoyable part of walking around was seeing the costumes. People worked long and hard on the costumes. The Dr. Octopus costume (pictured in the gallery below) took over a year to create and was made specifically for the show. Zombie enthusiast Scary Gary wandered the floor; he’s an actor at the Darkness Haunted House in St. Louis. Other favorites of mine included the Spaceballs characters, Chef, and the Blues Brothers. Click on the thumbnails below for full pictures.