Getting ready to step out the door and hit X-Men Origins: Wolverine in an hour or two, which I have been looking forward to for a while. If I was anywhere near Michigan, though, I would be joining Elizabeth Bear, Wil Wheaton, John Scalzi, and over a thousand others at Penguicon 7.0. A three day Con celebrating Linux, free and open source software, and Science Fiction? Had I heard about this a few weeks ago I would have been there; thanks to GeekDad for the heads up!
Yes, it is time once again for Sci-Fi London, that truly amazing film festival held at the Apollo Piccadilly Circus and many nearby locations. This is the eighth year for the festival, and it is bigger and better than ever, starting Wednesday the 29th and running through Monday the 4th. It has become the event where the Arthur C Clarke Award is handed out, as well as the Sci-Fi London Awards. For those who want to build their own, they have created the SFL Lab where scientists, comic artists, leading genre writers and filmmakers will present a full program of classes, including things like Filmaking for small screens. For the more gonzo build-your-own types they held the 48 Hour Film Challenge a few weeks ago (so they could show the results at the SFL festival). They handed out titles, dialog, and props to 71 teams on Saturday, and on Monday 55 of those teams returned with finished films. They will be doing many World and UK Premiers, including the films The Hunt for Gollum, Eyeborgs, Eraser Children, The Clone Returns Home, and one of my personal favorites, Cyborg She. They will be screening X-Men Origins: Wolverine before it opens in UK theaters. And so much more; wish I could get the time off from work to be there, but at least I can watch Sci-Fi London TV!
After watching the Smashing Pumpkins Steampunk song yesterday, I had to track down the original 1902 French movie that inspired the video segment. Based on the 1865 story From The Earth To The Moon by Jules Verne, it was cutting-edge film making, with never-before seen special effects and production values. You can download the book to read on your computer or portable device, or read it online. You can also listen to the story online or download it for your portable media player (or burn it to CD) thanks to the good folks at Librivox. They remade the movie in 1958, but the original is the best. You can download your own copy for your permanent collection or just watch it online at Archive.Org.
I mentioned the New York Comicon yesterday, going on this weekend. Also this weekend is the Broward Anime Festival in Florida, complete with the DOA volleyball competition, and the G-Anime Con in Canada for the French-speaking fans on this continent. If you are anywhere near Austin, you are hopefully at Ikkicon, and enjoyed today’s Anime Music Video (AMV) Contest. Other events at the Con include live music from Last Stop Tokyo, Peelander Z, Kristine Sa and The Slants (we are talking Austin here, of course there is great music), the Anime Poetry Slam, the Dance Contest (fan teams choreographed to their favorite Anime theme songs), the Anime Dating Game (18+), and the Iron Artist competition, as well as a large number of panel discussions with the creators of the various Animes listed. Then there are the instructionals, where you learn how to build your own: Animation 101 (owning 2D or 3D animation software helps, but is not required), the DVD Production Panel, Breaking Into the Music Industry presented by The Slants (again, this is Austin), the Voice Acting Workshop, Cosplay Presentation, Cosplay Props and Materials, and many more. The scary part? All those events happen on the first day! Wish I could be there for the rest of the Con!
PhilCon 2004 is less than 2 weeks away; if you live on the East Coast of the U.S., this one would be worth a visit! A lot of like-minded SciFi Fans will be there, and some great Author/Artist Guests.
Chick Corea has built a great new album, with a world class group of musicians, based on a SciFi story by an old cult religion person. His music just keeps getting better and better.