The latest installment of Fan Expo Canada ran this past weekend in Toronto at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from Aug 23-26th and saw a wide variety of celebrity guests and panels as throngs and throngs of fan boys and fan girls took over the space for days filled with panel discussion, photo ops and plenty of exclusive fun stuff to check out. Much like its sister convention “Comic-Con: San Diego” it is becoming an increasingly important place for the film studios to show their latest offerings because it’s conventions like this that are truly a telling example of the buying power of those in attendance and that it simply can’t be ignored anymore.
From the independent studios with the cult followings like Troma Films all the way to the major studios like Warner Bros Canada there was a great portion of the festival that was devoted to what’s coming in theatres, on home video and on TV in the upcoming fall season. While many studios and films had a fairly big presence including promotion of some films that will be featured as this year’s edition of the Toronto International Film Festival, there are two studios and one film festival that went all out in promoting what’s going to be coming up for them in the near future.
Our friends at Walt Disney Pictures Canada went immersive into the mind of Tim Burton for his upcoming film with a full exhibit of the art of “Frankenweenie” the stop motion animated film that opens theatres across the country on October 5th. The brief glimpse we were afforded of some of the beautiful art work and meticulous work that went into shooting this film in stop motion, then rendering it for 3D has only made this critic more excited for this wonderful animated adventure when it hits theatres in only a few weeks. To learn more about “Frankenweenie” you can visit their official website right here.
The team at Anchor Bay Home Entertainment Canada had a very busy convention as they have a lot of releases to push. First and foremost was the release of “The Walking Dead: The Complete Second Season” is out today on DVD & Blu-Ray and with the shows stars Norman Reedus and Jon Bernthal there on the Saturday to sign autographs and answer questions the crowds were so massive that you’d have to believe that the fire Marshall himself might have been on speed dial that Saturday afternoon. In addition to that the promotion was in high gear for shows like “Spartacus: Vengeance” as well as other upcoming home video releases like “High School” and “The Victim”. In addition to all those, it was nice to see some Canadian content highlighted as the hit indie zombie comedy “A Little Bit Zombie” that was recently released on DVD and Blu-Ray with members of the cast and crew on hand for photo ops with props from the film and an autograph session. They also hosted several screenings and along with those films previously mentioned, the upcoming release “Excision” was also highlighted which after a successful run at the Fantasia Film Festival in Montreal will not only be released in October on DVD & Blu-Ray but it will also bow at the 7th annual Toronto After Dark Film Festival who also had a booth at Fan Expo this year as they announced their first 10 films for the festival in October.
Going to 9 nights for the very first time in its existence, it is widely know that the Toronto After Dark Film Festival is one of the premiere festivals not only in Canada but across the globe for fans of horror, sci-fi, action and cult genre movies and at this year’s Fan Expo they announced the first 10 feature films in their lineup to get the crowds pumped for the festival in October. Festival director Adam Lopez and his team were hard at work spreading the word of what a fantastic experience going “After Dark” truly is and with a limited edition poster and t-shirt available at the Expo by local award winning artist Ghoulish Gary Pullin it looks like this year’s edition of the festival will be one of the best yet. The first ten films feature two Canadian premieres and come from 7 different countries and it all breaks down as follows.
Rec 3: Genesis (Canadian Premiere)
Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning (Canadian Premiere)
A Fantastic Fear of Everything
Lloyd the Conqueror
This first half of their lineup is only a taste of the highly entertaining fan experience that makes up the overall “After Dark” experience. For more about these first ten films and about the festival itself you can visit them on Facebook right here or check out their festival sizzle reel on YouTube right here for more information about the films and for more information about how to purchase all access passes that went on sale today, you can visit them right here.
Fan Expo Canada showed this year, that as much as the comic books, the video games and the role playing are a part of the culture and the experience of the convention but when movies, TV shows and film festivals debut their wares at these events, the fans not only listen but they turn up in droves.
Don’t forget to subscribe to my feed above or follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Tout as the Pop Culture Poet for all the latest and greatest news and reviews from the world of entertainment.