Saturday at WonderCon started with a bang: Watchmen director Zack Snyder appeared before an extremely packed house along with his cast to reveal about 20 minutes of footage from the movie, including the opening credits.
The conversation was lively and the footage very exciting. Of course, I can't give my final opinion till I've seen the movie start to finish, but based on what I saw this weekend, it's hard for me to imagine this film stumbling too hard. I'm a huge fan of the graphic novel, so I may be a wee bit biased — though it's hard to tell if that would make me easier or harder on the film. I guess I'll know soon, but to see my thoughts on the panel and more details about the clips,
- The ballroom crowd went wild when, in addition to director Zack Snyder, most of the major cast members showed up on stage. They included Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Billy Crudup, Malin Akerman, Jackie Earle Haley, and Patrick Wilson.
- After some chatting about the movie, Snyder announced he was showing us the first 20 minutes or so of the movie. The opening credits of Watchmen are astonishing and manage to cram in the history and back story of the movie's alternate reality, all set to Bob Dylan's "The Times They Are A-Changin."
- We also got to see a scene of Rorschach (Haley) in prison that practically had the crowd on its feet by the end. I'll just say this: it's violent, it's kick-ass, and I think it's a taste at how satisfying seeing this graphic novel on the big screen could be.
- A couple of funny moments: Morgan said that in approaching his role as The Comedian, he had to somehow make the character seem human in the midst of "killing, raping and pillaging throughout the world." Crudup said in order to make Dr. Manhattan seem distracted, he just thought of "walking on the surface of the sun and things like that."
- If there's a sequel, it probably won't involve Snyder, who called such rumors "crazy talk" and added, "To me it seems impossible to even talk about. That's like a sequel to Moby Dick."
- For the record, Snyder couldn't be cuter in person.
- If the film does well it will almost certainly get a director's cut re-release this July. Currently, the movie is 2 hours and 43 minutes long, and the director's cut will be 3 hours and 10 minutes.
- When talking about all the cuts Snyder had to make for the theatrical release, he mentioned the studio requesting less of two things: violence and Dr. Manhattan's blue, er, private areas.
- Snyder also said that the companion story to the comic, Black Freighter, has been created as an animation and will be released on DVD a week after the movie hits theaters.
- Dave Gibbons, the novel's illustrator, had nothing but kind words for the movie, saying "It's completely surreal" and "This is like the movie I saw in my head, and these are like the people I saw in my dreams."
- Fun fact: Little Rorschach, whom we see in the opening credits, is played by Snyder's own son.