Comicpalooza was first held July 19, 2008 in the lobby of the Alamo Drafthouse Theater in Katy, Texas. It wasn’t a comic convention; it was a simple signing event set to coincide with the release of “The Dark Knight.” Comicpalooza was conceived as a means of helping local comic creators reach the media and the public. It was fun for all dozen or so comic creators who showed up. We had no idea what it would rapidly grow into.
Comicpalooza 2009 was re-imagined as a two-day comic book festival set in a local mall, again with a strong emphasis on promoting creators, connecting with the media, and fostering new growth in the fanbase. We featured guests like David Mack, Terry Moore, Steve Scott, Tom Hodges, Mat Johnson, Andy Kuhn, Dirk Strangely and others, and added events like special screenings, Q&A sessions, and the charity live art benefit. The event was so successful we drew more fans than any other Houston comic convention in 15 years.
2010 saw Comicpalooza re-invented yet again, this time hosted at the George R. Brown Convention Center as a multi-format convention celebrating not just comics, but also sci-fi and fantasy, horror, steam punk, New Media, movies, film, and gaming of all types.
This year Comicpalooza is bursting at the seams with so many guests that we can’t list every guest in this article. So, be sure to check back to Comic Booked or visit ComicPalooza.com to get an eye full of this year’s guests; we are going to begin with Media Guests that have been announced so far for the show.
Green Lantern Guests To Shine At Comicpalooza
DEKE ANDERSON - Deke Anderson has been a working actor for over 30 years. Deke will portray General Caven in the upcoming 2011 Green Lantern movie.
Deke has acted with Tim Robbins, Kevin Costner, Lance Henricksen, Dee Wallace Stone, Bruce Campbell, Dick Van Dyke, Kelsey Grammer, Dennis Franz, Seann William Scott, BeBe Newirth, Michael Nouri, Eddie Albert, Parker Stevens, Pamela Sue Martin, Ed O’Ross, Ted Danson, Charles Napier, Woody Harrelson, Finola Hughes, Charlotte Ross, and Sheryl Lee Ralph.
Deke has been directed by Green Lantern’s Martin Campbell, Spider Man’s Sam Raimi, James Burrows, Simon West, Dick Wolf, Larry Shaw, Joe Napalitano, Chris Nyby, Seith Mann, Adam Arkin.
Deke has coached Bruce Campbell, Masi Oka, Shannon Elizabeth, Christopher Judge, Sarah Foret, and Amber Stevens.
NICK JONES – Athlete, warrior, actor—Nick Jones is truly a man for all seasons. And with his role as John Stewart in the upcoming film Green Lantern, Nick is adding the mantle of superhero to his growing list of credits. Nick was born in New Jersey. Growing up in Alabama, he studied drama and played football at the University of Alabama before enlisting in the Marine Corps.
As a Marine and an avid fan of video games and comic books, Nick is the perfect choice to play Hal Jordan’s associate in the Green Lantern Corp. Watch your back, Sinestro.
Harry Potter Guests To Put Spell On Convention
JAMES and OLIVER PHELPS – f you’re a fan of all things Hogwarts, you’re most likely a fan of James and Oliver Phelps, who portray Fred and George Weasley in the wildly successful series of Harry Potter films.
The brothers Phelps were born in Birmingham, England, where growing up, they often played pranks much like their troublemaking screen personas.
When not playing wizards, the brothers love to play video games, soccer and golf, though I’m sure they’d prefer to meet you for a quick match of Quidditch if their schedules would allow it.
Star Wars Guests Arrive In Force
TOM KANE – Although Tom Kane is possibly best known as the voice of Jedi Master Yoda in George Lucas’ Star Wars: The Clone Wars, actor Tom Kane has more than 25 years of experience giving voice to characters like Iron Man, Magneto, Gandalf, Ultron, Doctor Doom, Santa Claus, Boba Fett, Bib Fortuna and Commissioner Gordon. Tom has appeared in TV shows and films such as The Powerpuff Girls, Teen Titans, The Wild Thornberrys, Spider-Man, Forrest Gump, District 9, and Halloween H20. His numerous video game credits include Batman: Arkham Asylum, Final Fantasy XII, Call of Duty: World at War and about every Star Wars game there is. Tom Kane is—literally—the man of a thousand voices.
PETER MAYHEW – Actor Peter Mayhew is probably better known by the name Chewbacca, Han Solo’s furry co-pilot and companion in the Star Wars movies. Before donning the Wookiee suit, he got his start playing the Minotaur in Ray Harryhausen’s 1977 film Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger.
When he’s not running around portraying mythic characters, Peter tours the country making appearances for his many rabid fans. Fun fact: Peter recently became an American citizen and had the good taste to move to the Lone Star state—just another reason to be Texas Proud.
JEREMY BULLOCH – Jeremy was born in the town of Market Harborough in the middle of England. He is one of six children and even at the young age of five was on stage in his school show enjoying acting and singing. After failing a school exam at the age of eleven Jeremy seemed destined for the acting profession and was soon attending Corona Academy Drama School, making his first professional appearance at the age of twelve when he appeared in a commercial for a breakfast cereal.
Following many appearances on children’s television, Jeremy’s big break came at the age of 17 when he landed a major role in the musical film Summer Holiday which starred the pop idol Cliff Richard (now Sir Cliff). Shortly after he went into a BBC soap opera called The Newcomers which ran for three years and made him a household name in the U.K. In 1969, Jeremy was off to Madrid in Spain to play the leading role in a musical film called Las Leandras. This was followed by two major films: The Virgin & the Gypsy and Mary Queen of Scots.
During the 1970s he made many other screen appearances, including the James Bond films, in which he portrayed the character “Smithers” (Q’s assistant). In 1977 Jeremy spent six months in the Far East, where he was based in Singapore and travelled to the Philippines, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia filming a BBC drama documentary called The Sadrina Project. This documentary was designed to teach the English language to people in the Far East, mainly the Chinese. On a trip to China some 15 years later, where Jeremy was performing in a stage play, he was instantly recognised by hundreds of people who said they had learnt their English from The Sadrina Project.
In 1978 he was starring in the hit television comedy series Agony that ran for three years. It was during this series that Jeremy was asked to play a small part in The Empire Strikes Back – the sequel to Star Wars. The part, of course, was none other than “Boba Fett”. Return of the Jedi followed soon and Jeremy was invited to reprise the role of Boba.
Since the early 1980s Jeremy has played many roles on television and on the stage in London’s West End. He has also done two world-wide theatre tours covering the Middle and Far East. Jeremy appeared regularly in the favourite T.V. series Robin of Sherwood, in which he played the part of Edward of Wickham. Jeremy’s son Robbie was asked to play Matthew in the series. Robin of Sherwood has a great following all around the world. Another popular series he has appeared in is Dr. Who where he played Hal the Archer in The Time Warrior with Jon Pertwee, and also Tor in the Space Museum with William Hartnell as the Doctor.
Since the re-release of Star Wars in 1997, the phenomenal interest in the character of “Boba Fett” has grown and grown and has meant that Jeremy is invited to sci-fi conventions and events all around the world. His fan mail has increased five-fold, but he still manages to reply to everyone that writes to him.
In the last few years apart from travelling the world Jeremy has been working in the UK on various television shows, and also appeared in a film Number One Longing, Number Two Regret . Another project Jeremy worked on – StarHyke -was released in 2009.
It was while on holiday in Tuscany, Italy that he received a surprise telephone call inviting him to make a cameo appearance in The Revenge of the Sith as Captain Colton. It was great fun to meet up with George Lucas and some of the characters again after so many years.
In the little leisure time he has he has managed to write his autobiography ‘Flying Solo’ which is proving a big seller. He loves nothing more than watching a game of cricket or soccer and travelling; in the past few years he has spent more time abroad than at home. He has collected an awesome amount of Boba Fett memorabilia, some given to him by dedicated fans, and some he cannot resist buying at toy fairs. His office at home resembles a “Boba Fett” museum.
Recently Jeremy worked on a BBC television series called ‘Bonekickers’ and filmed a pilot episode of ‘Turpin’. He has also worked on an audio book for the Dr. Who series and a workshop on a musical about the life of the singer Dusty Springfield. Jeremy has appeared in an episode of the UK version of ‘Law & Order’ and his latest project has been filming ‘The Presentiment’ a story set in the times of Jack the Ripper.
BattleStar Galactica Guest To Appear At Comicpalooza
Edward James Olmos – For more than 30 years, pioneering actor, filmmaker and activist Edward James Olmos has been creating memorable characters in projects that have burned themselves into our imagination.
Olmos received his first big in the 1970s with a role in the groundbreaking Chicano play Zoot Suit, for which he earned a Tony award nomination. From there, he began racking up parts in classic films such as Virus, Wolfen, Blade Runner, Selena and Stand and Deliver, for which Olmos became the first American-born Latino to receive an Oscar nomination for Best Actor.
And his work in television is no less impressive. Olmos won a Golden Globe and an Emmy for his work on Miami Vice, but perhaps his most beloved role is that of Admiral William Adama on the Sci-Fi Channel’s critically acclaimed, award-winning reimagining of Battlestar Galactica.
Whether protesting for those in need or making art to feed the soul, Edward James Olmos is a man dedicated to giving of himself and a beloved star (literally — asteroid 5608 Olmos is named in his honor).
Star Trek Guest Beams Into Convention
MARINA SIRTIS – Although Marina Sirtis, a classically trained stage actress, has played Ophelia in Hamlet and has appeared in films alongside Faye Dunaway, Bruce Willis and Sandra Bullock, she’ll be forever known as Deana Troi, the psychic counselor from the Star Trek franchise.
Lately, Marina has been a guest star on several popular television shows such as The Closer, Family Guy and The Cleveland Show. Marina loves her many fans, appearing frequently at conventions around the world, which is why she is known across the galaxy as “Imzadi.”
Buffy The Vampire Slayer Guest
JAMES LEARY – James Leary is a versatile writer, producer and actor based in L.A. James grew up in Dallas and formed his own improv comedy troupe before moving to Chicago to study at the renowned Second City.
He has received raves for his performance in Parallax Theater Company’s production of Robert Coover’s The Babysitter and co-starred as Kevin, the live-in lover of Fernandito, on Telemundo’s Los Beltrán, but he’s probably best known for his work as Clem on cult hit Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
James has traveled far and wide and accomplished much, but we’d expect no less from a native Texan.
Firefly And Serenity Guest Flies Into Covention
SEAN MAHER – Actor Sean Maher has appeared in several television shows and films, but he’s best known to Browncoats everywhere as Simon Tam from Joss Whedon’s beloved cult series Firefly and Serenity, its feature film spinoff. Since his work with Captain Mal and crew,
Sean has kept genre close to his heart with guest-starring roles on Ghost Whisperer, Human Target and Warehouse 13. Sean became interested in acting as a child and eventually graduated from NYU with a BFA in drama, lending credence to the adage that if you “follow your dreams, you’ll see the stars” (or, at least, a new star system while aboard a Firefly-class space cruiser).
Scream Queen Guest Scream Into Comicpalooza
LINNEA QUIGLEY – Linnea is best known for her role as “Trash” in the film The Return of the Living Dead. She has also starred in dozens of other horror films including Nightmare Sisters, Creepozoids, Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-O-Rama, Night of the Demons (the 1988 original and the 2010 remake), and A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master. Quigley is the author of two books about her career as a B-movie actress, The Linnea Quigley Bio and Chainsaw Book and I’m Screaming as Fast as I Can, as well as the horror pictorial book Skin.
In recent years, Linnea has focused on short films that run primarily at festivals and art houses as well as her writing. But she has never forgotten her “B-Movie” roots and still enjoys working with young, up and coming talent whenever she can. She also attends conventions all over the world and loves meeting her fans of all ages.
Candyman Guest Prowls Comicpalooza
TONY TODD – Tony Todd, a classically trained stage actor, has appeared in films both comedic and dramatic, but he is most celebrated for his work on genre projects such as Candyman and Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Tony studied at the Eugene O’Neill National Theatre Institute and cut his teeth doing experimental theater before being cast in Oliver Stone’s Platoon. Since then, he has worked nonstop on stage and screen, as well as an instructor in the classroom.
Though he has found a loving home in the horror community, with a body of work encompassing everything from Shakespeare to George Romero, Tony Todd is the very definition of versatility.
Be sure to check back with ComicBooked for more updates and also for news about just some the names of your favorite comic book artists that will be appearing at Comicpalooza 2011!