If you follow any prominent journalist, critic or entertainment reporter on Twitter or Facebook, you may have noticed the past few weeks have been spent dreading Comic-Con. There are some prominent exceptions, but for the most part the San Diego pop culture extravaganza is one of the toughest and most stressful events to cover on the entertainment calendar. As members of the media, we often becomes so fixated on the negatives we forget how often Comic-Con brings joy to the movie or TV fan inside all of us. And frankly, it's our job to convey that excitement to all of our readers who can't make it down to Hall H or Ballroom 23.
A lot has been written about why Comic-Con is important to Hollywood or genre fans or comic book fans or pop culture fans, but beyond its inherent abilities as a hype machine, why it deserves all this attention is really quite simple: Comic-Con transcends a photo op or a press conference when something special happens. And over the years, there have been some truly unexpected and amazing moments. Especially on the movie side.
With the 2014 edition of the Con right around the corner, HitFix's movie team compiled our top 10 panels of all time. (OK, we weren't there in 1976 or 1991, but let's be honest. Comic-Con didn't really take off until 2000 or 2001.) It's a great walk down memory lane even if you didn't get the chance to experience it in person. Do you remember hearing about the first footage of "Iron Man" or the screaming Beatles-esque fans during "Twilight" or the shock of complete footage for a "TRON" sequel?
Check out these historic movie moments and more in the embedded gallery at the bottom of this post.
Were you at any of these panels? What's your favorite Comic-Con movie memory? Share your thoughts below.
2001 | Drama | RSummary: A powerful and disturbing story of intolerance featuring Ryan Gosling as a young Jewish man in New York City who joins a Neo-Nazi group.Director: Henry Bean
Cast: Ryan Gosling, Summer Phoenix, Peter Meadows
2004 | Fantasy | PGSummary: Ella of Frell is given the "gift of obedience" by a fairy, only to realize that it's more of a curse because it could separate her from her true love, Prince Charmont. Will Ella manage to conjure a "cure" that enables her to live happily ever after?Director: Tommy O'Haver
Cast: Anne Hathaway, Hugh Dancy, Cary Elwes, Aidan McArdle
2010 | Adventure | TV-PGSummary: The human boy Finn and his best friend Jake the Dog find friends and adventure in the Land of Ooo in this delightfully odd and surprising animated series.Director: Pendleton Ward
Cast: Jeremy Shada, John DiMaggio, Hynden Walch, Tom Kenney
2009 | Drama | GSummary: A fourth grader and her friends deal with bullying from a more popular girl in their class.Director: Martha Coolidge
Cast: Sammi Hanratty, Austin Thomas, Michael Learned, Adair Tishler
2014 | Thriller | RSummary: A morally unsound but very ambitious man finds himself uniquely at home in the cuthroat world of late-night news video crews.Director: Dan Gilroy
Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, Bill Paxton, Riz Ahmed
1976 | Drama | PGSummary: When world heavyweight boxing champ Apollo Creed wants to give an unknown fighter a shot at the title as a publicity stunt, his handlers pick palooka Rocky Balboa, an uneducated collector for a Philadelphia loan shark.Director: John G. Avildsen
Cast: Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Carl Weathers
1973 | Comedy | PGSummary: Before Star Wars, George Lucas paid tribute ot the '50s of his youth with this dramedy featuring Ron Howard and Richard Dreyfuss as high school seniors trying to make the most out of their last night in their California home town. Keep an eye out for a very young Harrison Ford!Director: George Lucas
Cast: Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, Paul Le Mat
1940 | Comedy | NRSummary: Nearly perfect screwball comedy featuring a woman (Rosalind Russell) caught between her ruthless ex-husband (Cary Grant) and her dull insurance agent fiance (Ralph Bellamy).Director: Howard Hawks
Cast: Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell, Ralph Bellamy
2015 | Action | TV-MASummary: Marvel's first Netflix TV series focuses on a blind attorney who uses cunning, violence, and a mask to protect the regular folk in Hell's Kitchen, New York.Director: Drew Goddard
Cast: Charlie Cox, Vincent D'Onofrio, Deborah Ann Woll
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