Panel Report: Green Lantern, Harry Potter and Sucker Punch
Posted on Sunday July 25, 2010, 14:22 by Nick de Semlyen in Comic-Con 2010
“In brightest day, in blackest night, no evil shall escape my sight. Let those who worship evil's might, beware my power, Green Lantern's light!”
The sizzle reel didn’t include a shot of him in his signature emerald costume – after last week’s controversial Entertainment Weekly cover, it’s possible that the CG work is being tweaked – but Ryan Reynolds did treat Comic-Con to a rendition of the Green Lantern oath. He was actually delivering it directly to the cutest child in the known universe, a boy named Connor whom Reynolds also invited backstage with his parents after the panel. The sight of the movie star and the pint-sized Lantern fan flashing their green rings at each other was easily the most adorable sight seen in Hall H this weekend.
The aforementioned reel was a flurry of rapid shots (they really should have shown it twice), including Reynolds’ Hal Jordan spinning directly up into the air, an alleyway brawl that’s concluded by Jordan using his ring to summon up a giant green fist, and a look at baddie Hector Hammond (Peter Sarsgaard), notable for his Elephant Man-esque noggin.
Equally cool: Mark Strong’s chilly voice narrating a short instructional clip: “Focus your willpower on the green orb in front of you, it will begin to glow…” Strong, of course, plays Sinestro, who in this movie acts as mentor to Jordan, but will (as his name suggests) become less friendly in any sequels. “He really puts Hal through his paces, as he doesn’t believe a human can become a Green Lantern,” Strong told the crowd. “Whatever happens later, happens later.”
Director Martin Campbell addressed the costume issue by saying, “What you’ve seen is very much a work in progress. The lines on the outfit follow the lines of musculature on the human body. It’ll eventually look extremely cool.” He described one particularly spectacular scene they’ve already shot, in which Jordan and love interest Carol Ferris (Blake Lively), who are both pilots, go up in F35s to dogfight with pilotless robotic planes. “By the end of it Hale does what Hale does best, taking things to the limit. It’s one of my favourite sequences in the movie.”
The whole panel were keen to emphasise that this isn’t just another superhero movie - with much of the action taking place on the planet Oa, it’s just as much a space opera. “We’ll take the audience to the centre of the universe,” promised producer Donald De Line. “You’ll see 3,600 alien Green Lanterns.” Including, it seems, Kilowog, Tomar-Re, Salaak, Boodikka and (Campbell’s favourite) Bzzt, who is, of course, a big ol’ fly.
It all sounds enticingly daft, and Reynolds certainly has enough charisma to fill Jordan’s boots. “The character feels like an amalgamation of Chuck Yeager and Han Solo,” said the star. “He’s a classic hero. He can throw a punch, tell a joke and kiss a girl. Who wouldn’t want to play that in a movie… or two or three?” Who indeed?
After an extended preview of Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows, presented by star Tom Felton (who also operated a tombola - TomBola? – to give away a Potter prop to a lucky audience member), it was time for the first ever look at Zack Snyder’s latest project, Sucker Punch.
The Watchmen and 300 director has, of course, also been working on Legend Of The Guardians: The Owls Of Ga'Hoole, a family-friendly flick about nocturnal birds. So has Snyder toned down his act? From what we see on screen, it appears the answer is hell no. The tale of a bunch of girls locked in a mental asylum, who create worlds in their minds to escape the grim reality, Sucker Punch looks utterly, awesomely loco. There’s a dragon. There are zombified German soldiers. There’s a giant mech-suit shooting down bi-planes. There’s Jon Hamm being cruelly sleazy. And yes, there are lots and lots of scantily clad ladies dancing in a way that might make you feel funny in your tummy. All set to the stomping drumbeat of Led Zeppelin’s When The Levee Breaks. Needless to say, more than a few Harry Potter fans fled for the exits with hands clasped over their eyes.
“I’ve been working on this thing for eight years, maybe longer,” said Snyder, grinning at the reaction to the footage. “I’m a huge fan of fantasy and in this climate, to be able to make something completely original, that’s not based on a breakfast cereal, is really cool.”
Carla Gugino rubbed her eyes, before gasping, “That footage was crazy! It’s the first time I’ve seen it, and it’s really hard to form a coherent thought now.” Nevertheless, she did reveal a few things about her character. “She’s a Polish psychiatrist, who in the dream-world becomes part choreographer dominatrix, part madam. If you can believe that.”
The effects are already looking incredible, but Snyder describes Sucker Punch as first and foremost a character piece, praising the girls he dropped into his asylum: Emily Browning, Jamie Chung, Vanessa Hudgens and Jenna Malone. “You might think the movie’s just about these huge action sequences, but it’s not,” he claimed. “If I took all the action out, it would still be satisfying because of how good the girls are. They never flinched, no matter what crazy shit I asked them to do. They’d just go, ‘Which of these guys do you want us to kill?’”