CCI '08: Thursday Programming Preview

The fine folks at Comic-Con International have released their programming schedule for this summer's big show. While you can find the entire schedule in it's entirety at the official CCI site, CBR thought we might help you by pointing out here some stuff you may miss as you wander the halls in a daze. We all know that Marvel, DC, Image, Dark Horse and the other big names will have big announcements pretty much every day, and you probably already have your schedule mapped out with time set aside for all of their events, so we're gonna focus on some of the highlights, surprises and potential hidden gems that are unique to CCI.

Wednesday night is the con's Preview Night, and while we expect the floor to be packed, there's only one official event planned: multiple screenings of the pilot episode of JJ Abrams new series, "Fringe."

Thursday is when everything really kicks off, and the full CCI schedule is online here. Here are a few things we think look kind of cool.

Fans of pulp-era characters should take note of the 75 Years of Doc Savage panel being hosted at 10AM by the editor/publisher of the character's reprinted adventures, Anthony Tollin (Room 5AB). At the same time is a panel specifically designed for CCI newbies, the Fans' Guide to Comic-Con (Room 8), as well as a Gene Rodenberry retrospective (room 6B).

At 10:30, aspiring superhero creators should drop in to the DC Talent Search Orientation (Room 4), while those with war on their minds might be better off in the insanely long titled Comics Arts Conference Session #1: Guerilla Warfare and Sneak Attacks: The Politics of Representing War in Film and Comics of the 1950s panel (Room 30AB).

Attendees with a taste for the sublime should set time aside for a truly inspired pairing of Stan Lee and Grant Morrison as they co-host a panel at 10:45 to promote their work with Virgin Comics. Attendance is apparently expected to be high for this one as they've blocked out Ballroom 20 for it, the second largest panel room at Comic-Con.

Disney will be setting up shop at 11AM to talk about their approach to animated movie making with the Disney Animation Process panel, featuring a special preview look at the next Disney cartoon, "Bolt" (Room 32AB).

Webcomics take center stage with a Keith "K Chronicles" Knight panel at 11:30, with Keith talking to the audience about his career (Room 4).

The long awaited, insanely anticipated video game "SPORE" will....not be debuting at CCI, but it's creator, Will Wright, will be hosting a panel in Room 6CDEF at 11:30 to promote it.

Also at 11:30 is a GI Joe movie panel (Room 7AB) featuring "special guests that you won't want to miss" and a presentation on comic books being used in college curriculum (Room 30AB).

Come noon, we have a panel on How Not To Break Into Comics, a co-presentation from Oni Press and Slave Labor (Room 10). On the flip side of that is How To Build A Comic Book Art Portfolio in Room 30CDE.

12:30 shines it's Spotlight on Eddie Campbell, one of Comic-Con's Special Guests this summer. Eddie will be answering questions and telling stories for about an hour (Room 3). Another CCI Special Guest, Steve "Sam & Max" Purcell will be holding his own Spotlight presentation for a different hour, starting at 1PM one door down in Room 2.

Also at 1PM is a Stan Lee/Activision panel with Stan and Brian Reed talking about the process behind developing games featuring Marvel's characters (Room 6A), Bongo celebrates their 15 year anniversary (Room 10) and The Future of the Comics Pamphlet is discussed in Room 32AB.

At 2:00, Rose McGowan gets in on some CCI action along with Robert Rodriguez as they head up a Q&A session to promote their new Red Sonja movie deal (Room 6CDEF).

Comic-Con Special Guests Signe Wilkinson and Jim Woodring get their Spotlight panels at 2PM also, in Rooms 4 and 10 respectively.

iPhone-mania infects CCI with the Clickwheel: On-Demand Digital Comics for iPod and iPhone panel at 2:00. Demos, tutorials and other info for folks looking to break into the iPod/iPhone distribution model will be shared in Room 32AB. With the 3G iPhone available starting tomorrow, July 11th, this could prove to be a more interesting panel than you'd otherwise expect.

At 2:30 the Dumbrella group of webcomic artists will be holding court in Room 3.

Nerd highfather Sam Raimi will be joined by Ken Biller in Room 6B to preview their new TV series, "Wizard's First Rule" at 3PM. At the same time, Comic-Con special guest Ed Brubaker will be talking about what the future holds for him in Room 7B, and The Rock will be onhand to divulge the secrets of "Escape From Witch Mountain" in Hall H.

At quarter past 3, Capcom will have exclusive behind-the-scenes info, pics and presumably footage from Street Fighter V (Room 6CDEF).

Fifteen minutes later, at 3:30, Entertainment Weekly gathers Jim Lee, Robert Kirkman, Matt Fraction, Colleen Doran, John Cassaday and Grant Morrison together in an effort to make Room 6A explode due to an overload of talent.

Meanwhile, down the way, Chip Kidd unveils never before seen in the US Batman manga from 1966 in Room 30AB.

At 4:15, Afro Samurai makes his comeback with the world premiere of the "Afro Samurai: Resurrection" trailer (Room 6B). Samuel L. Jackson, Takahashi Okazaki and The RZA will be onhand for this event.

Apparently DK Publishing is dealing with their oversight of leaving John Constantine out of their "DC Universe Encyclopedia" by releasing a "Vertigo Encyclopedia." They'll be presenting a documentary of the process behind the book in Room 2 at 5:00.

From there, you can jog over to Room 32AB to get you daily dose of comic book snark with The Comics Blogosphere panel at 6:00.

The nighttime programming is headlined by Will Eisner: Portrait of a Sequential Artist at 7PM in Room 7AB, a first look at "Punisher: War Zone" at 7:30 in Room 6B and at 10 we have the world premiere of "Lost Boys The Tribe" in Ballroom 20. Whew!

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