Better late than never.
Yes this blog is late, I completely ignored the fact that I shot some footage their, and I didn’t talk about it?! Argh! Anyway the perfect accumulation of demand for the con to come to Sheffield and for the fan favourites to follow the scent of another cool venue to embrace the fans.
So how was the first Sheffield Film & Comic-con? It was awesome! A wonder of imagination and creativity, but steep prices for booths that demand you empty your bank account for any Star Wars memorabilia. But that’s not what I was there for, I wanted to experience the con, which did involve me buying a lot of memorabilia, but it’s only on once a year so you know, I wanted to buy cool stuff.
I wanted to create a video that emulated the fun spirit of Comin-con so I walked around the floor and managed to get a lot of footage of stands, the fun details such as the A-Team Van and Kit from Knight Rider and people around the con. Nothing special just guerrilla film making at its best. No rig, no lights, no sound. Just the camera and me.
An encounter with a little girl handing me a bookmark leaflet for a new book series lead me to a stand, a stand that offered 3 books of interest to me. A series called Thieves Guild, I had a chat with the author and she was really interested in new readers. People to engage in her story and she has a well thought out plan. Especially since she has 3 books and a soon to be comic adaptation. ( http://www.cghatton.com )
The footage I recorded accumulated into a 1:43 short video which you can watch here http://www.youtube.com/wesleyjfilms named Sheffield Film & Comic-Con 2014
My first meeting with someone I admired was Jeremy Bulloch, you know Boba Fett from Star Wars. For a first time meeting him, he was engaging and was interested in a conversation. We talked about him and suddenly started talking about family and general chit chat, that just doesn’t happen. Jeremy was humble and wanted to listen and communicate with fans and not just sign something and have it be a throw away experience. Then it becomes about numbers, more than it does about fan service.
So I have him sign a photograph.
Here is the photograph I had with him.
So I walk away with my thoughts trying to catch up to what just happened, that was a mistake, I left my signed photograph behind! (Not that I knew that) I walked away and visited a man by the name of Dirk Benedict. Face in A-Team. I didn’t get a picture with him but he (like the other people I met) had a story to tell. Dirk talked about his basement in which he regularly re-enacts scenes from the A-Team with a blow up doll, and his desire to rescue her and to be the hero again. Shouting “BA!” and pretending he’s re-living the episode.
He was adamant that he’s an avid cigar smoker, and how amazed he is that he’s still alive. He was nice to talk to and to have that funny moment. Especially since he had been doing it all day. I appreciated that, and so did my dad.
Walking back through the arena Jeremy Bulloch shouts my name “Wesley, Wesley. You forgot your photo!” not only he remembered who I was (sounds like a fanboy moment) but he cared as much to wait and look out for me passing by, surely he did and we started talking again. The day couldn’t get better.
It was about time to leave because I was shooting an alternative video to the “Ice Bucket” Challenge, where it isn’t about the challenge, but more about the cause that the money is going to. Before I was about to leave I walk past a huddled crowd around someone, I couldn’t see who it was. So I walk past trying to look for the sign saying who’s gaining all of the attention.
It was David Prowse…
The chance to meet David Prowse M.B.E… Darth Vadar… Oh man childhood memories flood, I’m ecstatic to meet him to think that he played a part in one of films most iconic series of films. And he’s just there, sat right in front of me.
First experience meeting him and he treats you like a friend rather than just another person. We were taking about how much it means to me that he is here, we chat some more and I ask him if he was okay with taking a picture with me, and sure enough I was ready to lean over the booth to look at the camera, framed like a Wes Anderson shot. Vadar asked me to move around and portray that we know each other in the photograph, to be more involved and not just a quick snap of us two.
There’s a funny story… but I’ll come back to that.
Cool dude that David Prowse.
So it was time to go. I came across a friend of mine that I knew was going to the con but that I couldn’t find the whole time I was there. So I leave with all the stuff that I bought and the autographs that I was glad to get, and drove home.
We look through the autographs and my mom notices an autobiography that is right in frame of the picture I had with David prows (pictured above). Throughout the hours following I felt incredibly stupid because I didn’t get David Prowse’s signature on the photograph with my mom’s name on it (she loves Darth Vadar) and that I could have got it on the book… I panicked and tried to figure out how to rectify my stupidity. The friend I was talking about, I’ll mention his name because he’s a life saver. Will Tang. I decided to call him (hoping that he’d still be there) and ask him if he could pick up David Prowse’s autobiography and get him to sign it for my mom (Which would be a pretty cool birthday present for her). Surely enough he texts me as he’s just got the signature and I couldn’t be more happy at this moment.
Me and my dad make up some BS excuse to drive down to Comic-con and pick it up. The man, the myth, the Will, had done it. And I couldn’t be more thankful! The day was a amazing and I’m already looking forward to next year!
As I said before I was participating in promoting donating to the numerous ALS charities and wanted to do a parody of a Breaking Bad promotional poster.
The filming didn’t take long, it was a pretty basic shoot that I took on single handedly, and my dad was a good sport for sitting in a chair, in the garden, with a little Yorkshire Terrier attacking him.