With Comic-Con’s rise in the popular imaginaion over the last decade, we’ve heard many folks mutter over the years “I need to write a screenplay about Comic-con!” If you have been working on such a script, it is time to quietly set it aside and start working on that oil spill comedy you had been pondering. In keeping with the times, Comic-Con will be the subject of a geekumentary by Morgan Spurlock (Super-Size Me) following the fan’s journey of seven con attendees. But Spurlock’s not going it alone, because that would be too much for any man. So he’s teaming up with Harry Knowles and Joss Whedon (along with producer Thomas Tull.) Whedon will be there to make witty, self-deprecating comments and to provide a strong woman character. Knowles, of course, will contribute his knowledge of getting excited. And, just to forestall any anxiety, Stan Lee will also be involved because Stan Lee has to be involved with everything. The title of the film is COMIC-CON EPISODE FOUR: A FAN’S HOPE, which shows a strong audience awareness already.

The filmmakers have issued a casting call for fans who are going to the big show this year:


Are you headed to the 2010 Comic-Con International in San Diego? Do you die for diehard fandom? Do you pine over Chris Pine, other Captain Kirks, or have firsthand knowledge of who is the ultimate Bruce Wayne? Is your Lost Ark a long lost collectible, an original edition comic book, a need to be the first in line at a sneak peak of Green Lantern, or to understand the ultimate and undeniable power of Akira?! Are you the original inspiration for comic book guy? Is your collection the biggest? Is your costume the best? Is your dream to propose to your girlfriend and give her the one ring to rule them all? Are you an artist who is showing off your work? A vendor showing off your amazing collection?

If you are any of these things, then we want to hear your story.

Oscar®-nominated filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, producer Thomas Tull, comic book icon Stan Lee, writer/producer Joss Whedon, and film guru Harry Knowles have joined together to bring audiences the feature-length documentary COMIC-CON EPISODE FOUR: A FAN’S HOPE – a documentary celebration of all things con-tastic!

We are looking to cast original, eccentric, funny, touching, and mildly obsessive people that will capture the excitement, enthusiasm, joy, and passion of comic book, anime, sci-fi, and fantasy lovers everywhere.

If Comic-Con International will be the highlight of your year and you have a story to share about your passion, let us know. Join the fellowship, take part in this epic documentary, and write us at [email protected] Include your name, phone number, a picture, and tell us your story.

There are a couple of things that strike us as a bit odd about this. Are Twi-fans who camp out overnight braving vermin and dirty old men not eligible? Maybe they are not “mildly” obsessed enough. The mention of Akira, the manga for people who hate manga, shows that cosplayers need not apply. In short, it’s a pretty limited casting call and most applicants will be wearing a T-shirt kinda like this:

or this:

Christopher Campbell at Cinematical is also a little dubious:

I don’t condone the practice of casting for documentaries, and already I’m turned off by this project. The people in a film like this should be found organically through observation and on-hand selection. And it shouldn’t specifically be about people who think they’re the most hardcore fanboy or fangirl professing to be such to the camera. This is how shows like Wife Swap are done, by attracting the biggest attention whores to embarrass themselves for a bit of money (I really hope A Fan’s Hope is not paying anybody). Typically in seeking people who want 15 minutes of fame, a production is going to end up with a freak show.

Besides, this film has already missed the most dramatic part of attending San Diego: Hoteloween!!!!! Where is the ten minute montage of people hitting refresh on their computers? The tension of the endless “circuits busy” beep on the phone? The intense drama and weeping when a Mission Bay location is revealed? It’s really all pretty boring from then on until the part where you stand in line to get into the William Morris party.

We’d also like to point out that this is NOT the first Comic-Con movie.

Mark Hamill directed and starred in this film about obsessed fan Don Swan, who goes to San Diego to find out what’s happening to his favorite superhero, Commander Courage. The film, released in 2004, featured unscripted interviews with con attendees like Kevin Smith and, of course, Stan Lee. Because Stan Lee must be involved in everything.

This film was so successful that six years later, Hamill has another directing gig, adapting his own comic book, THE DARK PEARL.

Nor is this the only movie about Comic-Con in the works! Simon Pegg and Seth Rogen are working on their own comic-comedy, PAUL, in which two geeks on the way to Con encounter an alien. Bidi bidi!

Frankly, we’ve long dreamed of writing our own Comic-Con docudrama, one that starts out involving a blogger on an endless quest to get to Ralphs for some food and to find free Wi-Fi. But then somewhere along the way, by a mad stroke of fortune, he gets into the EW party and meets the cast of Doctor Who! And then things get crazy. There are some reversals, misunderstandings, and double crosses, all revolving around a mint copy of CHEW #1. It even looks like a romance may develop between the blogger and the actress who was a purple Jedi who got cut out of ATTACK OF THE CLONES. But then, morning dawns out by Joe’s Crab Shack and the blogger is left with only an improved sense of self worth, happy memories, and a MiFi that the Jedi girl left him with so he can blog the shit out of the rest of the show.

Maybe there is a reason no one has yet made a Comic-Con movie.


  1. I enjoyed Comic Book The Movie, mostly due to the fact the cast was made up of my favorite voice over talent. Billy West was pretty funny.

    Getting a Trekkies vibe from this, hope I’m wrong, just afraid they’ll focus on the strange rather than what we love.

  2. Okay… here’s my pitch:
    After Hours meets The Lost Weekend with The Hangover at Comic-Con. (Doesn’t have to be CCI… just some big media nerd prom somewhere to serve as the backdrop.) The inciting incident which is actually the conclusion? The hotel loses his reservation.

    Tell it Memento-style, with nesting flashbacks, each crazier than the one before.

    “Why were you dressed as a Jedi padawan?”
    “Because this hot she-Klingon wanted to have really kinky sex, and she was bored with Starfleet officers.”
    “Wait… Klingon? Where did you meet her?”
    “Waiting in line at the Twilight blood drive.”
    “Hey… I was flirting with some hot cougars in line. Then she comes up and tells me she has a much better way to draw blood. That’s when she kissed me and bit my lip at the same time.”

    (And yeah, for fan service, the Klingon is played by Marisa Tomei.)

    Like “Blair Witch”, there are no trailers, just cinéma vérité viral videos of bits and pieces from that weekend.

  3. Well the instant I heard the Super-Size-Me guy and Harry Knowles was involved I lost any and all interest whatsoever. That they are doing a casting call means this is going to end up being a complete freakshow.

  4. “Comic Book The Movie was embarrassingly bad.”

    I dunno…I thought it was pretty good for a low-budget, straight-to-DVD release. Sure, the movie was more a geek-fest for Hammill’s animation voice-over buddies rather than a straight Comic-Con expose; but the fake ‘interviews’ on Commander Courage did manage to reflect on the irritating modern trend of ‘realism’ for characters who really are from an earlier era anyway.

  5. This sounds horrible. It could be interesting if it were about the people behind Comic-Con, past and present. But this is obviously a LOOKIT THE FREAKS project. And that joke’s been told for ten years now, ever since Triumph The Insult Comic Dog went to the Phantom Menace premiere.

  6. “I can think of few thinks more depressing than a movie about the freaks and geeks at San Diego.”

    All of us can think of more depressing things that a comic-con film — but the subject at hand is a comic-con film.

  7. most(if not all) movies about comic books fans make the fans look like a bunch of losers, freaks, and weirdos. this “documentary” seems to be heading in that direction. chris campbell in the statement above is right. once a casting call is announced this project ceases to be a doccumentary and has instead become a reality show. so instead of getting a nice cross section of fans, we’ll end up getting the usual over-the-top type of fans that reinforces the notion that all comic book fans are losers, freaks, and weirdos. i wonder what stan lee would say about my comment? why? because stan lee must be involved with everything!

  8. I think people should buy COMIC BOOK: THE MOVIE dvd just to see what SDCC looked like back in 2002/3?— back when there were just only 70K attendees clogging the Exhibition Floor and competing for those upstairs Program rooms (Hall H was yet in the future).

    Ahh, all that wide-open Convention Center space back then!

    (And I’m not saying that just because I’m IN the film: was pleasantly surprised when I spotted myself sharing a scene… with “Luke Skywalker”, “Fry” and “Cosmo”! /squee)

    As for Spurlock/Knowles/Whedon/Lee’s production: my worst fear is that it’ll turn out to be a ‘Reality Tv’ version of BIG BANG THEORY— cause that’s what nerds are now seen to be, right? Right??

  9. It’s The Black Pearl not The Dark Pearl.

    Anything Harry Knowles is involved with is a bad thing.

    Comic Book: The Movie was a good film, but I admit it would be difficult to sit through for people that have no idea who any of the folks in the film are.

    I like most of what Morgan Spurlock gets involved with. I really enjoyed his show–30 Days. It would be a great documentary if it followed aspiring artists and writers instead of ubernerds. Ubernerds are boring and painful to behold. I don’t see how simply attending SDCC would be at all interesting to anyone except people who have/will/tried-to attend SDCC. Yes, we all know the drama of the process of even getting to the event itself and all the crazyness and bullshit that follows, but there’s only one thing that will come of this and that’s pointing and laughing. It’ll be like watching an episode of Wipeout without the excitment and fun. Maybe it’s just because I hate “reality TV” or that a great majority of the people that attend comic book conventions irritate me…but I think this sounds like a bad idea that won’t rise above being exploitative.

    Then again, maybe it’s just an expansion of the thing he did for the Simpsons Anniversary show…but I did not look fondly on those people whose lives revolved around Simpsons merchandise. I just felt sorry for them. Congratulations Comic Book Ubernerds, that’s what you have to look forward to.