Todd McFarlane graced the Calgary Expo panel stage this year to talk about what he's been doing and give thanks to his hometown. It was a great panel and I certainly enjoyed listening to him tell stories or give ideas towards how people can get into the comic industry. The panel opened with an exciting pump up reel and kicked off with some mystical smoke from there. It had a high quality production to it and I was very impressed with the sleek design of the panel. McFarlane had a number of kind words about the city mentioning the place as truly home while also giving us a fun look at his past jersey collection. Needless to say, this was some good fun and he brought excitement to the stage.
Being a panel there was a mix of questions and general discussion. One of the first things to come up was Spawn, a character that was developed in a basement within Calgary and has become well known in the comic world. For an exclusive to the panel he announced that the script has been finished for the movie and promised a premiere in Calgary for the film. This would be quite awesome as I cover films and we never get anything like that here. He went further with this going on that there were some actors being in early discussions and that he hopes to have a proper announcement about the Spawn movie before the end of 2017 or within a couple of months (Expo in late April 2017). This was also a project where he most definitely aimed to write, direct and produce the film to bring a true reality to the character. It would be the most authentic take on Spawn bringing that hard R rating with nothing held back.
Now that I've gone over Spawn as I'm sure many were excited for that interesting bit of information, I'll discuss some other elements of the panel. The character of Spawn was described as himself, if he had the power of a hero. There was also a heavy aim with the character to have people think of him without a color of skin in mind and just consider the actions that he would take towards the bad people in the world.
The talks continued and moved towards his figure line which I must personally say is excellent, the Halo figures are awesome. McFarlane has won many awards for his action figure lines with the comment of it being easy to take a picture and then have that emulated in clay. It's an honest comment on how to properly create figures and he has this done with the many lines that are produced under the brand. This built towards a comment of it being easier to take an existing property and doing something fresh with it, it's more difficult to create something unique than improve on what's been established.
Some other final comments were towards his work on a darker Spiderman comic line with the emphasis on Spider- "MAN". This caused some tensions with Marvel back in the day, but left a long standing effect with the popular hero. There was also a fun tale about how Sam Raimi for the original Spiderman movies attempted many ways to capture his iconic poses and they just weren't humanly possible. They were "cool" which is his business, but not at all possible without the magic of CGI. I feel this summed up the panel quite well with the best details and it really was a great show. Todd McFarlane was fantastic with the fans and offered many thanks to the people of Calgary with free autographs and photos which was nice to see.
Our Calgary Expo 2017 Hub