Planet Comicon 2017 Publishing Panel
The cultural impact of games spreads farther and wider as artists and developers stretch the idea of what a game can be. Join this panel of local game industry professionals as they explore the psychology and social impact of games and play on many professional industries - and facets of culture. Moderated by Carol Mertz, Executive Director of PixelPop Festival.
Carol Mertz - https://twitter.com/carolmertz
Rob Santos - https://twitter.com/RobMSantos
Jen Patton - https://twitter.com/jenrpa/media - http://www.jenrpa.com
The Silver Foxe - https://twitter.com/TheSilverFoxe - twitch.tv/thesilverfoxe
The popularity of Indie Games is skyrocketing - with more and more studios that make games entering the fold every day. But what does it take to create or be part of an indie games studio? This panel will discuss the steps you can take to create your own studio, the trials and tribulations of making games, and the abundance of tools available online to help you get started. Learn about the career paths of indie developers, and how diverse professional backgrounds have helped them develop the skills they need to make games and put them out into the world.
Sam Coster - http://www.butterscotch-shenanigans.com - https://twitter.com/BScotchShenani
Mary McKenzie - http://volcanobean.com - https://twitter.com/marymckelly
Aaron Buske - https://twitter.com/AdronBuske - http://nerdforaliving.com
Ben Cook - https://twitter.com/GyCot
Did you know that St. Louis has a fast-growing and successful game developer community? Our city is home to a variety of gaming studios and makers who are making their mark in the gaming world. STL is also home to events like Pixelpop Festival, specifically tailored for people who want to learn about the art and development of games.
Carol Mertz - https://twitter.com/carolmertz
TJ Hughes - https://twitter.com/_Teejay5
Wendy Buske - http://nerdforaliving.com - https://twitter.com/WendyBuske
Mary McKenzie - http://volcanobean.com - https://twitter.com/marymckelly
Wizard World, Inc., (WIZD) the preeminent producer of Wizard World Comic Cons across North America, has formed a new Touring Unit in partnership with veteran music and technology executive Nick Turner. The new unit will bring vibrant live entertainment to Wizard World shows, building on the Wizard’s initiative to create an atmosphere of a weekend festival at every Wizard World show.
Wizard World is proud to announce that the first venture of Wizard World Touring a joint venture production with Gene Simmons by which the legendary KISS front-man, bassist and rock icon will perform “An Evening with Gene Simmons and his Band” and attend five Wizard World Comic Con events as an iconic star attraction in 2017. The club venue concerts are in conjunction with appearances at conventions in Cleveland (March 18-19), St. Louis (April 8-9), Philadelphia (June 2-3), Chicago (August 26-27) and Austin (November 17-18).
Evening concerts are planned on Friday in each of the respective cities, with Simmons on hand each Saturday to greet fans, pose for photo ops, sign autographs and conduct live interactive Q&A sessions at each Wizard world Comic Con.
“I’m excited to bring Rock & Roll back to Wizard World Comic Con in 2017,” said Simmons. “It will be great to meet fans and perform for them in every city.”
John D. Maatta, President and Chief Executive Officer of Wizard World stated: “We are thrilled to be working with Gene for our inaugural production by Wizard World Touring. Gene is a showman-businessman hyphenate, and there is no better entertainer whom the fans love more.” Maatta continued: “We are working very hard at Wizard World to build it into a ‘best of breed’ entertainment/live event company. Wizard World Touring is another aggressive step forward into a sector that is extremely promising for us—It is a brand new day at Wizard World. We are very pleased to have a seasoned executive of the caliber of Nick Turner to guide us into this space.”
The agreement is the beginning of a new touring unit spearheaded by Nick Turner, which will bring entertainment to Wizard World shows, building on the promotion’s initiative to create an atmosphere of a weekend festival at every stop.
In Cleveland, fans can rock out on Saturday night, March 18, with “An Evening with Gene Simmons and his Band” at Agora Theater (5000 Euclid Ave.) beginning at 8 p.m. Tickets are available for $29.95 in advance at http://agoracleveland.com and http://www.wizardworld.com and $35 at the door, with special meet-and-greet packages also available. Venues, times and pricing for other cities to be announced closer to those respective shows.
Simmons, who was a big hit in his first Wizard World Comic Con appearance in Richmond in 2016, is a multi-hyphenate entrepreneur and one of the world’s most recognized personalities. He co-founded KISS 42 years ago. KISS is America's #1 Gold Record Award Winning Group of all time, in all categories (RIAA). KISS has sold over 100 million CDs and DVDs worldwide, is celebrating its 43rd year, and continues to sell out stadiums and arenas around the world, breaking box-office records set by Elvis and the Beatles. KISS was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame at the 2014 induction ceremony, and the band is recognized with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for its pioneering work.
Wizard World comic and gaming con events bring together thousands of fans of all ages to celebrate the best in pop culture: movies, television, gaming, live entertainment, comics, sci-fi, graphic novels, toys, original art, collectibles, contests and more. Wizard World is also the place for cosplay, with fans young and old showing off their best costumes throughout the event. Fans dressed as every imaginable character – and some never before dreamed – will roam the convention floor. The famed Wizard World Comic Con Portland Costume Contest will take place on Saturday night.
Star of American Pie, Scary Movie, and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back
Shannon Elizabeth, is an actress and fashion model known for her roles in films including American Pie, Scary Movie, and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. She has also made horror films including Thirteen Ghosts, Cursed, and Night of the Demons.
Shannon Elizabeth appeared in several films and television shows before being cast in 1999’s American Pie in the role of Nadia. She starred in the UPN series Cuts and had a recurring role in That ’70s Show. She provided the likeness and voice for Serena St. Germaine in the 2004 video game, James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing.
She competed in the sixth season of Dancing with the Stars, partnered with Derek Hough. In 2009, Shannon Elizabeth hosted the comedy/burlesque series “Live Nude Comedy”.
Elizabeth is also a noted celebrity poker player. At times, she appeared in Las Vegas Valley up to three times each month to participate in poker games with top players. She scored 13 tournament cashes from 2006 through 2013.
Star of Firefly, Serenity, and Arrow
Summer Glau is an American prima ballerina and actress, who is best known for for her iconic characters River Tam in Joss Whedon’s TV series Firefly and the feature film, Serenity and Cameron Philips in Terminator:The Sarah Connor Chronicles. She has also recently appeared as Isabel Rochev on the CW series Arrow.
Summer got her start in Joss Whedon’s much acclaimed TV series Angel playing a cursed Prima Ballerina in the 2002 episode “Waiting in the Wings”. Contributing to her sci-fi credits were roles in USA’s The 4400 as Tess, a schizophrenic who can control others with her mind and followed it with a return to the Whedonverse in Dollhouse as Echo’s long lost nemesis, Bennet Halverson.
2010 saw Summer fulfilling two lifelong dreams by starring in both a Lifetime movie Deadly Honeymoon, and filming a western The Legend of Hells Gate: An American Conspiracy.
Summer revisited TV screens in 2011 in NBC’s highly anticipated “The Cape” as Orwell, an investigative blogger who teams up with Vince/The Cape in order to fight crime and restore justice. Summer followed that with impressive guest appearances on ‘Alphas’.
Star of The Guild, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Eureka, and Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog
Saturday and Sunday only! Felicia Day is a professional actress who has appeared in numerous mainstream television shows and films including the CW show "Supernatural" and the SyFy series "Eureka".
In 2012 she launched a YouTube channel called Geek & Sundry. The channel has garnered more than one million subscribers and over 200 million views. In 2014, the company was sold to Legendary Entertainment. Felicia continues to work as creative chief officer with her company, as well as develop television and web projects for her to write, produce, and star in.
Read more about Felicia Day >>
What is on the horizon for upcoming video games and pop culture? Watch as we divulge the trends the panelist have witnessed developing from iconic 80's brands respawning right here in St. Louis!
Jeremy Corray - https://twitter.com/JeremyCorray
Jillian Stiles - https://twitter.com/Jauxiles
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Video games have created innovative careers with their unique design and development process. From artwork and programming to marketing, promotion, progaming and entertaining, this panel will unveil unique sides to the video game industry.
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Are you a passionate gamer looking to start your own studio? Or a crafter who wants to sell your awesome creations to others? This panel is for you! The nerd world has endless possibilities when it comes to stories and imagination – but it also offers a landscape where many can discover their inner-entrepreneur. This group of talented, creative women are some of the many who are forging their own career path through nerdy pursuits.
A multi-faceted actress with a classic beauty and magnetic presence, Krysten Ritter has crossed mediums with an impressive body of work in film, television, theatre, writing, producing, music, and fashion design.
Krysten plays the title character of Jessica Jones in the gritty Netflix series, “Marvel’s Jessica Jones.” Which was recently picked up for a second season. The psychological drama centers on an ex-Super Hero who’s dark past comes back to haunt her. The first season has proved to be a huge success garnering Ritter a Critics Choice nomination in the lead actress in a Drama catagory. She will also reprise her role in the Netflix event series “Marvel’s Defenders.”
Krysten Ritter is also well-known for her critically acclaimed turn as Jane Margolis on AMC's hit series, "Breaking Bad" and as the titular character in cult favorite and critical darling "Don’t Trust the B—— in Apartment 23" for ABC.
On the feature side Ritter was most recently seen opposite Amy Adams in Tim Burton's newest film “Big Eyes,” a drama centered on the awakening of the painter Margaret Keane and Alex Ross Perry’s critically acclaimed indie “Listen Up Phillip” opposite Jason Schwartzman, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.
In addition to her current acting work, Ritter has a first-look production deal with Universal TV, where she is developing and producing television properties under Silent Machine.Other credits include "Veronica Mars,” “Refuge,” "Life Happens" (which she co-wrote and co-produced), "The Blacklist,” "She’s Out Of My League,” “Vamps,” and "Confessions of a Shopaholic.”
Her theater credits include Neil LaBute's “Heart of the Matter” at the Lucille Lortel Theatre, Zach Braff's “All New People” at Second Stage, Rajiv Joseph’s “All This Intimacy” which played at Second Stage Uptown, and the “24 Hour Plays” at the Signature Theatre.
Ritter and her dog Mikey split their time between New York and Los Angeles.
“I’m a madman with a box, without a box. I’m stuck in a black hole at the end of the universe in a stupid old junkyard!”
Matthew Robert “Matt” Smith is an English actor and director. He is best known for his role as the eleventh incarnation of the Doctor in the British television series Doctor Who, for which he received a BAFTA Award nomination in 2011.
Smith initially aspired to be a professional footballer, but spondylosis forced him out of the sport. After joining the National Youth Theatre and studying Drama and Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, he became an actor in 2003, performing in plays like Murder in the Cathedral, Fresh Kills, The History Boys and On the Shore of the Wide World in London theatres. Extending his repertoire into West End theatre, he has since performed in the stage adaptation of Swimming with Sharks with Christian Slater, followed a year later by a critically acclaimed performance as Henry in That Face.
Before his role in Doctor Who, Smith’s first television role came in 2006 as Jim Taylor in the BBC adaptations of Philip Pullman’s The Ruby in the Smoke and The Shadow in the North while his first major role in television came as Danny in the 2007 BBC series Party Animals. Smith, who was announced as the eleventh incarnation of the Doctor in January 2009, is the youngest person to play the character in the British television series. He left the series at the end of the 2013 Christmas Day special, “The Time of the Doctor.”
Smith was born and brought up in Northampton. He attended Northampton School for Boys. He had planned to be a professional football player, having played for the youth teams of Northampton Town, Nottingham Forest, and Leicester City. After a serious back injury ruined this career, his drama teacher introduced him to acting by signing him up as the tenth juror in an adaptation of Twelve Angry Men without his consent. Although he took part in the play, he refused to attend a drama festival for which his teacher had also signed him up, as he saw himself as a football player and did not view acting as socially acceptable. His drama teacher persisted, and eventually persuaded him to join the National Youth Theatre in London.
After leaving school, Smith studied drama and creative writing at the University of East Anglia, graduating in 2005. His first theatre roles as part of the National Youth Theatre were Thomas Becket in Murder in the Cathedral and Basoon in The Master and Margarita. His role in the latter earned him an agent and his first professional jobs, Fresh Kills and On the Shore of the Wide World. His new professional roles led him to seek an agreement with his university so that he could graduate without attending lectures in his final year.
Smith’s first television role was as Jim Taylor in the BBC adaptations of the Sally Lockhart quartet books The Ruby in the Smoke and The Shadow in the North. His first major television role came in the television series Party Animals, a BBC television drama series about fictional parliamentary advisors and researchers in Westminster. In Party Animals, Smith portrays Danny Foster, a parliamentary researcher to Jo Porter (Raquel Cassidy), a Labour politician and junior Home Office minister. At 26 years old, Danny is described as an intelligent but timid “politics geek” who should have moved on from researching at his age. Within the series’ narrative, he attempts to balance his affections for Kirsty MacKenzie (Andrea Riseborough), his intern, while trying to prevent Porter’s imminent decline.
In an interview in 2007, Smith discussed his character’s motivations. He summarised Danny as having a romantic outlook of the political world while being cynical elsewhere. The character was drawn into politics by his father and his own political drive. He defended his character’s age by characterising him as being loyal to Porter, instead of being incompetent. He talked about his character’s emotional and intellectual maturity: emotionally, he lacks confidence around women—most notably seen with his unrequited love towards Kirsty—but Smith portrays Danny as a caring and sensitive but “wry, sarcastic, [and] witty” romantic; and intellectually, Danny is portrayed as attentive and possessing a strong work ethic.
Smith was revealed as the Eleventh Doctor in the British science-fiction television series Doctor Who in January 2009 to replace David Tennant, who announced his departure in October 2008. Smith was a relatively unknown actor compared to the actors then speculated about possibly taking on the role, who included Paterson Joseph, David Morrissey, Sean Pertwee, James Nesbitt, Russell Tovey, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Robert Carlyle and Billie Piper. Smith was first named as a possible successor less than a day before he was announced as the Eleventh Doctor, on 3 January 2009 edition of BBC Breakfast among the names speculated about. His obscurity prompted the news headline “Doctor Who?,” a riff on the show’s title.
Smith was one of the earliest actors to audition for the role, performing on the first day. The production team, consisting of the incoming producer, Steven Moffat, and BBC Wales Head of Drama and executive producer, Piers Wenger, immediately singled him out based on his performance. Smith additionally auditioned for the role of John Watson in the Moffat-created Sherlock, undergoing auditions at the same time; he was unsuccessful, as Moffat believed his eccentric acting style was closer to Holmes, whose role had already been given to Benedict Cumberbatch. At 26 years old, Smith was three years younger than Peter Davison was at the time of his casting as the Doctor in 1981, and younger than any other actor suggested for the role. After three weeks of auditions, Moffat and Wenger agreed that it had “always been Matt” and approached him to accept the role. The BBC were cautious about casting him because they felt that a 26-year-old could not play the Doctor adequately; Wenger shared the same sentiment but thought Smith had proven his acting quality in Party Animals, which Wenger thought highlighted Smith’s “mercurial qualities.” Some fans of the show believed that Smith was inexperienced and too young for the role, while others supported him by citing his demonstrated acting ability. For his performance in his first series he was nominated in the Outstanding Drama Performance Category of the National Television Awards.
Smith has said of his character: “The Doctor is excited and fascinated by the tiniest of things. By everything. By every single thing. That’s what’s wonderful about him as a character. It’s why children like him, I think. Because he doesn’t dismiss anything. He’s not cynical. He’s open to every single facet of the universe.” In June 2010, Smith appeared on stage with Orbital, and performed with them a version of the Doctor Who theme, at the Glastonbury Festival. Smith hosted the Doctor Who Prom at the Royal Albert Hall on 24–25 July 2010. On the morning of 26 May 2012, Smith carried the Olympic torch in Cardiff, an activity which was noted by Doctor Who fans for its resemblance to a 2006 episode of the show in which the Doctor carried the torch. On 1 June 2013, the BBC announced that Smith would be leaving Doctor Who at the end of the 2013 Christmas special.
Smith appeared in a deleted scene of the 2007 film In Bruges, playing a younger version of Ralph Fiennes’ character. He starred in the 2009 short film Together and the 2010 film Womb. In February 2013, it was reported that Smith had signed up to appear in Ryan Gosling’s directorial debut How to Catch a Monster. Smith’s directorial debut, the short film Cargese, was aired on Sky Arts in May 2013.
During Smith’s tenure in On the Shore of the Wide World, the play transferred to the Royal National Theatre in London. After finishing the play, he took on the role of Lockwood, a pupil in the Alan Bennett play The History Boys. After The History Boys, he would act in the teen play Burn/Chatroom/Citizenship and Swimming with Sharks; the latter being his West End début, with Christian Slater. In 2007, Smith appeared as Henry in the critically acclaimed Polly Stenham play That Face at the Royal Court Theatre Upstairs in Chelsea. The play transferred to the Duke of York’s Theatre in the West End in 2008 and became Smith’s second role there. That Face focuses primarily upon alcohol and drug addiction in an upper-middle-class family after the paternal figure in the family leaves. As Henry, Smith portrayed an aspiring artist who left school to take care of his mother. To prepare for the role, the cast interviewed alcoholics and their families. Smith discussed his character’s relationship with his mother in an interview with the Evening Standard.
The entire cast of the play was nominated for the 2008 Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre, and Smith won the Evening Standard’s award for “best newcomer” for his role. Upon its transfer to the West End, Smith’s performance as Henry was highlighted as one of the positive aspects of the play by critics for the Evening Standard, Daily Express, The Guardian, and The Times.
On 7 October 2013, it was announced Smith would portray Patrick Bateman in the musical adaption of American Psycho at London’s Almeida Theatre. The show will begin its run in December.
Meet Pop Culture Icon William Shatner
At Wizard World St. Louis
Whether you know him best as Captain Kirk, T.J. Hooker, Denny Crane or even the Priceline Negotiator, William Shatner has been a dominant figure in pop culture for a half century.
Always a hugely popular Wizard World guest, Shatner will appear at Wizard World St. Louis, Friday and Saturday, April 1-2. He'll meet fans, sign autographs, pose for photo ops and conduct an always entertaining Q&A panel.
"Beam" over to meet him at America's Center this spring.