With just five weeks to go until the largest comics show in the United Kingdom, guests and schedules are starting to be announced. Once more hosted by the British Empire & Commonwealth Exhibition Hall and Ramada Plaza Hotel, this year’s lineup promises to be the biggest and the best so far (http://www.comicexpo.net) …
It all kicks off on Friday 9th May with Diamond UK Retailers Day (exclusive presentations to UK & European retailers of the major releases for the rest of this comics year) and the Orangutan Comics Film Night ’08 for all early arrivals, starting 6pm at the Ramada Plaza Hotel (more details available at http://www.myspace.com/bicefilmnight)
Saturday 10th May and Sunday 11th May feature two full days of events, including presentations on upcoming Marvel and DC releases, the world famous Hypotheticals panel hosted once again by Dave Gibbons, DC Portfolio reviews by editors Karen Berger, Eddie Berganza and Hank Kanalz, the Saturday evening presentation of The Eagle Awards (first presented in 1976, these are the comics industry’s longest established awards). As usual, the first 1000 people through the door on Saturday are eligible for a free goodie bag — in previous years this has contained graphic novels, comics, posters, badges, action figures and once again the contents are a well-kept secret…strictly first come, first served, strictly one per person.
Special Guests signing, sketching and/or hosting talks throughout the weekend include:-
Jim Shooter – Editor-in-Chief Marvel Comics 1978 — 1987 Founder and Publisher of Valiant Comics and Defiant Comics. Shooter began his career as writer on The Legion of Super Heroes in DC’s Adventure Comics. He has also written The Avengers and Secret Wars (Marvel). Magnus Robot Fighter, Doctor Solar and Harbinger (Valiant). He will be the new writer of the Legion series, beginning with issue #37, returning to the Legion, a little over 30 years from his previous run, it will be his first major published comic book work in years.
Walt Simonson – Writer / Artist on Star Slammers, The Mighty Thor, Orion, Fantastic Four, Elric: The Making of a Sorcerer (written by Elric’s creator, Michael Moorcock), X- Factor (with Louise Simonson), Manhunter (written by Archie Goodwin) for which he won the Shazam Award and Hawkgirl.
Louise Simonson – Writer on Magik of the New Mutants as part of a four-issue Mystic Arcana. Magnus Robot Fighter (ibooks). Warlock, New Mutants, Galactus the Devourer, Superman: Man of Steel and Steel Author of two books for teens based on the Justice League cartoon: The Gauntlet and Wild at Heart (Bantam Books)
Jim Starlin – Writer / Artist best known for “cosmic” tales and space opera and as the creator of the villain Thanos. Works include Captain Marvel, Warlock, Metamorphosis Odyssey, Dreadstar, Cosmic Odyssey, Batman, Gilgamesh II, Silver Surfer, the Thanos and Infinity Gauntlet sagas and Marvel Universe: The End. He is currently writing and drawing The Death of the New Gods for DC.
Yanick Paquette – Artist on Ultimate X-Men, Civil War: X-Men, Adventures of Superman, Areala Warrior Nun, Avengers, Gambit, GenÂ¹Â³, JLA, Superman: The Man of Steel, Terra Obscura, Tomorrow Woman, Transmetropolitan: Filth of the City, Seven Soldiers: The Bulleteer, Wonder Woman, Xena: Warrior Princess.
Dave Gibbons – Legend of the British Comics Industry. Artist on HARLEM HEROES, DAN DARE and ROGUE TROOPER which he co-created. He was the original artist on DOCTOR WHO Weekly/Monthly. Most famous for his collaboration with Alan Moore on WATCHMEN. Recently he produced the Eisner Award winning graphic novel, THE ORIGINALS.
Mike Carey – Writer of Ultimate Fantastic Four, X-Men, Wolverine. Vertigo’s Crossing Midnight, Lucifer, Hellblazer and the adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere. Wildstorm’s Wetworks, Marvel’s Spellbinders, Virgin Comics The Stranded. Author of the Felix Castor Novels: The Devil You Know, Vicious Circle and Dead Men’s Boots from Orbit.
Alan Davis – Artist on Captain Britain (Marvel UK). Artist on Captain Britain (Marvel UK), Marvelman (Warrior) and DR & Quinch (2000AD), Batman and the Outsiders and Detective Comics (DC) Creator writer and artist on Excalibur and Clandestine. During his career he has written and drawn most of Marvel and DCs’characters and titles including JLA: The Nail & Another Nail, The Avengers, X-Men and Killraven. Fantastic Four: The End. He is currently writing and drawing the new Clandestine series.
Mark Buckingham – Eisner Award winning artist on Vertigo’s Fables. A regular on Vertigo titles such as Hellblazer, Sandman, Shade the Changing Man and Death: The High Cost of Living he is also well known for his work on Miracleman (Marvelman in the UK). As well as extensive runs as artist on Batman: Shadow of the Bat and The Titans (DC), Generation X and Peter Parker:Spide -Man(Marvel). He has recently designed Sandman and Fables based Statues for DC Direct and has just illustrated his first Children’s book; Neil Gaiman’s Odd and the Frost Giants.
Paul Cornell – Novelist, TV writer and comics writer. Best known for his work on the new Doctor Who, he has also written for the Primeval TV series. He’s the writer of the Marvel Comics series Wisdom and 2000AD’s XTNCT. He has just begun a new ongoing title for Marvel: Captain Britain and MI-13.
Many, many other guests are listed on the official website: http://www.comicexpo.net/08guests.html
Tickets for the Bristol International Comic Expo are available online for six pounds per day for adults, or just one pound for 12 to 16 year olds under the Kids For A Quid scheme. As usual, all accompanied attendees under the age of 12 get in for free. Book now via: http://www.comicexpo.net/08tickets.html
Next week — what EXpo EXclusives will be available? Who is bringing what to which table? What’s the Virtual Bristol Anthology up to this year? And what’s this Comics Fete thing for the kids all about?