FX Networks’ considerable presence at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con will take on historic proportions with the first-ever, large-scale “FX Fearless Arena” fan experience consuming the Hilton Bayfront Park next to the Convention Center. Building on the popularity of last year’s The Simpsons-based “Homer Dome,” FX Networks will build a theme park featuring massive activations for The Strain, American Horror Story: Hotel, Fargo and The Bastard Executioner, as well as numerous other on-site features including contests, collectibles and more. The “FX Fearless Arena” will be ideally situated between the Convention Center and the Hilton Bayfront Hotel, the two leading locations for SDCC panels and presentations.
Fans will be able to register for the activations early by going to www.fxsdcc.com beginning July 7th. The first 2,500 pre-registered fans who visit the Arena will receive a free, exclusive FX Fearless giant tote bag in the Welcome Area. Must be 18 or older to participate in activations for The Strain, The Bastard Executioner and American Horror Story: Hotel.
Prove your fearlessness by entering a live-action virtual reality experience inspired by The Strain, the vampire thriller from Carlton Cuse and Guillermo del Toro, based off the best-selling book trilogy by del Toro and Chuck Hogan. Using the Samsung Gear VR – powered by the Galaxy Note 4, fans will be taken on a two-and-a-half-minute adventure created exclusively for Comic-Con and featuring series regular Kevin Durand (“Vasiliy Fet”). It’s the perfect preview for the second season of The Strain, which premieres on FX on Sunday, July 12th at 10 PM ET/PT.
American Horror Story: Hotel
Ryan Murphy’s hit anthology horror series American Horror Story is back this fall with its fifth installment, Hotel, and FX is building a two-story model hotel to give viewers a taste of the era. Then fans will be able to venture inside one of eight “gifting suites” in order to capture the most flying bills and earn prizes.
The Bastard Executioner
“Escape the Forest” is the ideal duel inspired by Kurt Sutter’s upcoming medieval drama The Bastard Executioner. Visitors don the mantle of “warriors” and square off against each other to prove their prowess with a high striker, a cross-bow, and a final puzzle challenge that will help them escape the “forest” and win a TBX-themed hooded t-shirt. The Bastard Executioner will debut on FX this fall.
Aw jeez, a blizzard in San Diego? Step inside a giant 20-foot inflatable snow globe featuring snow flurries and a façade of a Waffle Hut – a key location in the second installment of the award-winning limited series Fargo which returns to FX this fall.
Numerous other on-site installations and opportunities for prizes, collectibles and more are available:
- Archer-themed water fountain shaped like Pam Poovey’s Dolphin Puppet.
- It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia sunscreen station.
- Concert button giveaways for Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll.
- The Kwik-E-Mart Truck will be on-site on Saturday, July 11th offering free Squishees in honor of The Simpsons, whose entire 26-season run is available exclusively on FXX and FXNOW.
- Sweepstakes featuring a grand prize trip to a luxury hotel in Los Angeles or New York City.
- A mega LED wall showing clips of FX Networks shows, as well as a live social-media scroll featuring #FXSDCC.
- Premiums including The Bastard Executioner t-shirts, American Horror Story key chains, and waffle-scented Fargo air fresheners.
- Complete limited edition collectible trading card sets – and complimentary carry cases – with cards from American Horror Story, Fargo and The Strain. Cards include code for a 12-day trial access to FXNOW.
- A massive – 238 feet wide x 226 feet tall – wrap on the Hilton Bayfront Hotel promoting the new season of The Strain.
No Question Mark Box Here; Super Mario Delivers a 1-Up in Theaters
If you were born in the ’80s, ’90s, or literally ANY decade after those, you know about Super Mario. A cultural phenomenon was brought to life on the big screen this last weekend. One that has not only stood the test of time but reinvented itself time and time again. This wasn’t even the first time it’s been made into a movie but, well, let’s be honest.. some of us choose not to acknowledge the LIVE action adaptation of the beloved game from 30 years ago.
It was pretty bad… But this was animation. ILLUMINATION animation at that. The Universal company that brought us Gru and his Minions, showed us the Secret Life of Pets, and gave us a reason to SING! Still, I had my reservations and even some concerns, especially when the casting was announced.
Eyebrows were raised. As big of stars as they were on paper, could they really deliver on voicing characters from a staple of our childhood? They did.
Chris Pratt and Charlie Day may not be Italian, and Jack Black may not be a King or Turtle creature from the Mushroom Kingdom, but they make the characters their own all while paying homage to the lore of a video game.
From the jump, the story reintroduces us to the brothers that just want to save Brooklyn one clogged sink at a time. We feel an instant connection and relate to these “underdogs of the plumbing world”. The movie is riddled with easter eggs, each of which tugs on the heartstrings of every generation of Mario fandom. And the soundtrack was beautifully put together to not only make us feel like we’re taking a walkthrough of the game but like an experience all its own with some familiar favorites thrown in.
Every word in the movie is pure eye candy for both those that are casual fans, and those analyzing every frame to see what they’ll catch next. Bowser’s ship, the Mushroom Kingdom, Kong’s arena, and the Rainbow Road.. They’re all meant to give us just enough of a “new” look at these amazing worlds, but stay true to how we remember them.
The movie itself moves along at the perfect pace. Although, if you don’t really know ANYTHING about the Super Mario Bros, you may have gotten a little lost and felt left behind in the green tunnel. But that’s ok! It’s an adventure of the imagination and a classic story of a boy that meets a girl and tries to save the world from a monster that wants to destroy it.
What’s funny is that you could easily say this is a story about two characters who couldn’t be more opposite if they tried, battling to win the heart of a princess. Who would’ve thought that the King of the Koopas was just trying to impress his crush?
And that song? Ohhh THAT song! It’s my new ringtone and deserves the Oscar for Best Original Song.
Back to the movie.
Universal and Illumination clearly understood the assignment. Is it missing some things or could things have been done differently or even better? Absolutely! We’re the worst critics of the things we hold nearest and dearest to our hearts. But if you’re up for going on a 90-minute adventure through amazing worlds, with awesome music, and characters that’ll make you smile and laugh, then this is the perfect movie to spring you into that warm summer feeling.
Plus there’s the whole part with karts and shells, and banana peels and oh my goodness how amazing was that?? It’s enough to make you want to stand up and cheer, then go home and destroy your friends and family on your favorite track haha.
The bottom line, it pays homage in all the right ways to the little guy with the mustache, while giving us something new and exciting. Take the kids and go see Super Mario Bros. You’ll be glad you did!
Warner Bros. Discovery Home Entertainment returns to WonderCon 2023
Justice League x RWBY: Superheroes & Hunters Opening Act Saturday, March 25 at 1:30 p.m. on North 200A. Talent confirmed so far to participate in the post-screening panel is Natalie Alyn Lind (Big Sky, The Goldbergs, Gotham) as Wonder Woman/Diana Prince and longtime RWBY cast member Lindsay Jones (Camp Camp) as Ruby, Kara Eberle ( RWBY: Ice Queendom) as Weiss, Arryn Zech (Detective Now Dead) as Blake and Barbara Dunkelman (Blood Fest) as Yang – along with Jeannie Tirado (Soul, Saints Row) as Green Lantern and Tru Valentino (The Rookie, The Cuphead Show!) as a cyborg. Also attending the panel will be producer/director Kerry Shawcross (series RWBY) and writer Meghan Fitzmartin (Supernatural, Justice Society: World War II).
Warner Bros. Discovery Home Entertainment returns to WonderCon 2023 with the big screen debut from DC Animated Films: highlights this year include the world premieres of the highly anticipated Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham and Justice League x RWBY: Superheroes & Hunters Part One the weekend of March 24-26 in Anaheim, California. Both screenings will be followed by panel discussions with actors and creators. Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham premieres at The Arena on Friday, March 24 at 6 p.m. Tati Gabrielle (Kaleidoscope, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Uncharted) as Kai Li Cain, Christopher Gorham (The Lincoln Lawyer, Insatiable) as Oliver Queen, David Dastmalchian (Dune, Suicide Squad, Ant-Man) as Grendon, producer/co-director Sam Liu (The Death and the Return of Superman), co-director Christopher Berkeley (Young Justice) and screenwriter Jase Ricci (Teen Titans Go! and DC Super Hero Girls: Mayhem Across the Multiverse).
Both films will have encore screenings in the Arena on Sunday, March 26. Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen, Part One will screen at 12:15pm, followed by Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham at 2:00pm