Showbiz Sandbox 287: The Unofficial Line On This Year’s Comic-Con

Pop-culture fans from around the world made their annual pilgrimage to San Diego over the weekend for this year’s Comic-Con.  More than 130,000 attendees turned up to a show where the largest auditorium has a capacity of 6,000. Alex Billington, editor of FirstShowing, explains how some fans had to wait in line for days (literally) to get into popular panel discussions such as the one for “Star Wars: Episode VII”.

Billington waited out the neverending lines so he could fill us in on all the events, panels, trailers and collectibles designed to build hype for upcoming films and television shows like “Hateful Eight”, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and “Deadpool”. In fact, so many movie studios and television networks showed up at Comic-Con, and with so much content, one has to wonder if their marketing messages weren’t ultimately lost in all the noise.

Meanwhile, the Minions spinoff from the “Despicable Me” franchise opened to record box office in North America giving Universal Pictures yet another big hit this year. Surely the studio will want the animated film to stick around cinemas for as long as possible, whereas Paramount Pictures has teamed up with two theater chains in an experiment to shorten the release window on certain films.

Of course we also cover the week’s top entertainment news including a request from publishing groups for an antitrust investigation targeting Amazon, “South Park” continues to redefine television thanks to a new deal with Hulu and the Rolling Stones continue their reign as the concert industry’s top earner.

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Box Office: ‘Minions’ Land Record $46.2M Friday
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/box-office-minions-eyes-massive-807689

‘Minions’ Dominates With $115.2 Million Debut
http://variety.com/2015/film/news/box-office-minions-dominates-with-115-2-million-debut-1201538640/

Final Chapter In Popular Franchise Vs. First-Time Director’s Pet Project
http://pro.boxoffice.com/latest-news/2015-07-07-weekly-chinese-box-office-preview-final-chapter-in-popular-franchise-vs-first-time-directors-pet-project

Forever Young: A Fluffy, Saccharine Chinese Coming-of-Age Tale
http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/movies/forever-young-a-fluffy-saccharine-chinese-comingofage-tale-20150708-gi7k81.html

India’s Most Expensive Film ‘Bahubali’ Opens Strongly, Garners Critical Acclaim
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/indias-expensive-film-bahubali-opens-808239

First Showing’s 2015 Comic-Con Coverage
http://www.firstshowing.net/category/comic-con15/

Must Watch: Comic-Con Trailer for Zack Snyder’s ‘Batman v Superman’
http://www.firstshowing.net/2015/must-watch-comic-con-trailer-for-zack-snyders-batman-v-superman/

Comic-Con 2015 Live: Lucasfilm’s Big Star Wars Hall H Presentation
http://www.firstshowing.net/2015/comic-con-2015-live-lucasfilms-big-star-wars-hall-h-presentation/

Tarantino Announces Ennio Morricone is Scoring ‘The Hateful Eight’
http://www.firstshowing.net/2015/tarantino-announces-ennio-morricone-is-scoring-the-hateful-eight/

Mondo’s Gorgeous Comic-Con Posters for del Toro’s ‘Crimson Peak’
http://www.firstshowing.net/2015/mondos-gorgeous-comic-con-posters-for-del-toros-crimson-peak/

This Year’s Big Comic-Con Collectible? Posters. Especially Those By Mondo
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/herocomplex/la-et-hc-mondo-posters-comic-con-20150711-story.html#page=1

Comic-Con 2015: Why the Convention Stayed in San Diego
http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/07/10/comic-con-2015-why-the-convention-stayed-in-san-diego/

Comic-Con 2015: Tarantino Rails Against Computer-Generated Imagery
http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/07/11/tarantino-rails-against-computer-generated-imagery/?_r=0

‘Star Wars’ Han Solo Spinoff in the Works With ‘Lego Movie’ Directors
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/han-solo-star-wars-spinoff-807153

‘South Park’ Re-Ups With Massive Hulu, Comedy Central Deals
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/south-park-ups-massive-hulu-807269

Accusing Amazon of Antitrust Violations, Authors and Booksellers Demand Inquiry
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/14/technology/accusing-amazon-of-antitrust-violations-authors-and-booksellers-demand-us-inquiry.html

US Women’s World Cup Win Shatters American Soccer Ratings Record
http://www.rapidtvnews.com/2015070738977/us-women-s-world-cup-win-shatters-american-soccer-ratings-record.html

China’s Stock Market Rout: Media Firms’ Chance of Escape Gets Smaller
https://variety.com/2015/biz/asia/china-stock-market-rout-media-entertainment-companies-1201535890/

China’s Efforts Fail to Contain Market Plunge
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/09/business/international/stock-sell-off-unabated-in-china.html

Chinese Stock Markets Continue to Nosedive as Regulator Warns of Panic
http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/jul/08/china-stock-markets-continue-nosedive-as-regulator-warns-of-panic?CMP=ema_565

Wanda Cinema Line’s Box-Office Revenue Rises
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/wanda-cinema-lines-box-office-806835

Harry Shearer Inks Deal to Return to ‘The Simpsons’
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/harry-shearer-returning-simpsons-807114

FTC exploring Apple rules for streaming music rivals in App Store
http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/07/11/us-apple-music-antitrust-idUSKCN0PL03O20150711

‘The View’ Loses Another Rosie
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/rosie-perez-departing-view-807247

‘The View’ Officially Announces Michelle Collins Hiring
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/michelle-collins-view-host-announcement-808299

Rolling Stones Lead a Record Midyear Concert Revenue Report for 2015
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/music/posts/la-et-ms-tours-concert-industry-box-office-midyear-20150710-story.html

‘Big Bang Theory’ to Be First U.S. Series to Stream on Chinese Web Sites Under New Rules
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/china-big-bang-theory-first-808270

Academy’s New Board of Governors Reflects Slowly Changing Demographics
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/movies/moviesnow/la-et-mn-academy-elects-new-board-of-governors-20150710-story.html

Keith Olbermann, ESPN to Part Ways Once Again
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/keith-olbermann-espn-part-ways-807458

Who Do You Think You Are?! Broadway Star Patti LuPone Takes on Audience Texting at Shows For Days
http://www.broadway.com/buzz/181412/who-do-you-think-you-are-broadway-star-patti-lupone-takes-on-audience-texting-at-shows-for-days/

Jonathan Groff Calls Out Madonna: ‘That B*tch Was on Her Phone’ During Hamilton Performance
http://www.vulture.com/2015/07/jonathan-groff-calls-out-madonna-for-texting.html

Comcast to Launch Internet TV Service Dubbed Stream
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/comcast-launch-internet-tv-service-808268

Paramount Teams With Exhibitors to Shorten Home Entertainment Release Windows
https://variety.com/2015/film/news/paramount-teams-with-exhibitors-to-shorten-home-entertainment-release-windows-1201536116/

Satoru Iwata, Nintendo Chief Executive, Dies at 55
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/13/business/satoru-iwata-nintendo-chief-executive-dies-at-55.html

​Omar Sharif, 83, a Star in ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ and ‘Doctor Zhivago,’ Dies
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/11/movies/omar-sharif-a-star-in-dr-zhivago-dies-at-83.html

Producer Jerry Weintraub Dies at 77
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/jerry-weintraub-dead-producer-dies-806941

Roger Rees, Star of ‘The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby,’ Dies at 71
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/roger-rees-dead-life-adventures-808126

  • mgiltz

    I’ve never been to the “real” Comic-Con in San Diego. Our guest Alex Billington somehow makes me understand both what I’ve missed and how over-stuffed the whole weekend has become! So now I’m jealous and relieved at the same time.