Search Results for: bullet to the head

Gene Roddenberry’s Original Pitch for “Star Trek”

Don Kaye and SyfyWire posted Firsts: Gene Roddenberry’s Original Pitch for Star Trek that will be of interest to fans.  Here are just a few things I found interesting…

  • The first captain of what became known as the U.S.S. Enterprise was not Christopher Pike or James Kirk, but Robert April.

  • Spock was originally conceived as “probably half Martian,” with a reddish complexion, semi-pointed ears, and a “Satanic” look.

  • Dr. Phillip “Bones” Boyce was the doctor not Leonard McCoy.

  • A shuttlecraft was used to take folks from the ship to other planet surfaces.  There was no transporters… no “Beam me up, Scotty.”

  • There were no phasers for the crew. They were originally going to carry rifles and pistols that fired either bullets, tranquilizer pellets, or explosive projectiles.

Thanks to Miguel Lopez for the heads-up.

The 35 Best Heist Movies

The Playlist recently posted their choices for The 35 Best Heist Movies.  There are a lot of great movies on this list.  In an effort to narrow it down, I decided to choose from movies where one heist was the focus of the film.

So using just their list here are three of my favorites…

“Rififi” (1955)
Yes, we know. This is the grandaddy of all heist films, the one that tops everyone’s list and is name dropped constantly. But if you haven’t seen the film (and by God, you should remedy that situation quickly) don’t get suckered into thinking this is just some cinematic touchstone that everyone talks about but no one really watches. If anything, Jules Dassin’s “Rififi” remains the template and the standard, with a centerpiece heist sequence that is still yet to be topped. The plot is standard stuff: four guys target a jewelry store, plan the perfect job and things don’t quite go as planned. But Dassin’s masterstroke is the 30-minute, nearly completely silent heist (no dialogue, no soundtrack) that brilliantly throws viewers right into the heart-pounding, tension filled robbery. A masterpiece in every sense of the word, “Rififi” remains the torchbearer for the genre with very good reason.

“The Getaway” (1972)
Based on a novel by the poet laureate of hard pulp Jim Thompson, directed by feminist favorite Sam Peckinpah, and starring a Steve McQueen firmly in the midst of a cocaine-soaked marriage breakdown, “The Getaway” rises out of a dense fog of testosterone: it doesn’t get any more boys-night-in than that. Ali McGraw (somewhat miscast, to occasionally charming effect) uses her wiles to free husband “Doc” McCoy (McQueen) from prison. After a botched bank robbery, the bickering pair go on the run with the loot, pursued by cannon-fodder cops and a variety of goons, led by the astonishingly repellent and malevolent Rudy (Al Letteria). Perhaps inevitably, it all culminates in a bloodbath in El Paso, and a tender reconciliation for the then real-life lovers. This is by no means top-tier Peckinpah; both he and McQueen were desperate for a no-nonsense hit after the commercial failure of “Junior Bonner” (1972). Nevertheless, all the staples are there — stunningly edited montages, patented slo-mo bullet ballet — and “The Getaway” is a solid, straight-ahead action flick that’s always fun to wander into the middle of on late night T.V. Possibly not Robert Evans’ favorite film though…

“The Asphalt Jungle” (1950)
John Huston’s 1950 noir may be better known now for the films it influenced (at least half the titles on this list, notably “Rififi”), and for an early luminous performance by Marilyn Monroe, but the film, creaky though it is in places and marred by some didactic, moralistic dialogue, is still a compelling piece in its own right. The narrative arc, (a man has a plan, gets a gang together, pulls off a heist, only to have chance and human nature foil the scheme) has become pretty much the heist film template, but details like the corruption of the police force and the careful characterizations of the gang members keep the proceedings fresh. And while censor-friendly debates on the nature of criminality abound, it’s clear where Huston’s sympathy actually lies; it is power, not lawbreaking, that corrupts here, so the only people with any sort of a code are those on the very bottom of the food chain: Sterling Hayden’s petty hood; the girl who loves him; the hunchbacked getaway driver and the safe-cracking family man. Disgust is reserved for those further up the hierarchy, whose degenerate desires eventually thwart them (both the mastermind and the front/fence character – a suave Louis Calhern – are undone by their interest in young nubile girls), while Hayden’s Dix is rewarded for his staunch, if misplaced loyalty, and perverse nobility, with the kind of tragic, theatrical, poetic death; the greatest honor a movie criminal in oppressive ‘50s America could hope for.

The Murder of Rasputin: The 100th Anniversary of a Mystery That Won’t Die

Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin was murdered in the very early morning hours on December 30, 1916.  If you know the name Rasputin, then my bet is you know the circumstances of his death.

Rasputin was said to have healing powers, a hypnotic effect on men and woman, was a known womanizer whom some said was a saint while others claimed him to be the human incarnation of Satan.

Prince Felix Yusupov, who confessed to killing Rasputin details how Rasputin ate poisoned treats with no effect…

…Rasputin relaxed, eating multiple cakes and drinking three glasses of wine, Yusupov waited. And waited. The “Mad Monk” should have been dead in seconds, but the cyanide seemed to have no effect. Growing worried, Yusupov excused himself to the other room. He returned with a gun, promptly shooting Rasputin in the back. The other accomplices drove off to create the appearance that their victim had departed, leaving Yusupov and Purishkevich alone at the mansion with what appeared to be Rasputin’s corpse.


A strange impulse made Yusupov check the body again. The moment he touched Rasputin’s neck to feel for a pulse, Rasputin’s eyes snapped open. The Siberian leapt up, screaming, and attacked. But that wasn’t the worst part. As Yusupov wrote in 1953, “there was something appalling and monstrous in his diabolical refusal to die. I realized now who Rasputin really was … the reincarnation of Satan himself.”

According to legend Rasputin was poisoned, shot repeatedly, beaten, bound and dumped into a river to drown.  When his body was found its condition supported the account of Rasputin’s murder and unnatural ability to survive…

…Two days later, a search party found a body trapped beneath the ice of the frozen Malaya Nevka River. It was Rasputin: missing an eye, bearing three bullet wounds and countless cuts and bruises.

Rasputin’s daughter wrote in her book, My Father, that when Rasputin’s body…

…was found, his hands were unbound, arms arranged over his head… Maria claimed this was proof Rasputin survived his injuries, freed himself in the river, and finally drowned while making the sign of the cross.

Most of us know the story of Rasputin and his supernatural ability to survive attacks that would have killed mortals.  Yet all we know, may not be the whole story.  Perhaps Rasputin didn’t have supernatural powers.

Andrew Lenoir presents an explanation based on research and historical facts to explain The Murder of Rasputin: The 100th Anniversary of a Mystery That Won’t Die.

Source: Mental_Floss.

Walter Hill and Matz Team for Triggerman!

That’s a cover detail from Triggerman, a new crime comic coming from Hard Case Crime and Titan Comics.

Triggerman will be written by Walter (“The Warriors”) Hill with art by Matz.

In the mean streets of Chicago, a convict is thrown headfirst into a life of bloodshed and bullets to save the girl he left behind…

I love the sound and look.  I’ll definitely be pulling the trigger on Triggerman.

Sources: Flickering Myth and Down the Tubes.

Z-View: Men of Wrath #5 by Aaron and Garney

Men of Wrath is a five issue mini-series created by Jason Aaron & Ron Garney published by Marvel.

Writer: Jason Aaron

Artist: Ron Garney

Colorist: Matt Milla

Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher

“Jason Aaron and Ron Garney pull no punches in this darkly magnetic read” – IGN “This is one messed up comic book that I took sheer delight in reading” – Comics Beat “These are talented creators telling a gut punching tale” – Comicosity Bear witness as JASON AARON (Southern Bastards, Original Sin) & RON GARNEY (Wolverine:Weapon X, Thor: God of Thunder) bring the story of the Raths to a bloody conclusion. It all started with some sheep. It won’t end until everyone is dead.

*** Beware – spoilers may be found below ***

The Good

  • Another nice cover!
  • “There’s somethin’ else I sure hate to tell ya…”  “Then don’t.”
  • Love the last panel on page 10.
  • Being smart enough to build your house to withstand bullets — you’re a killer after all.
  • “Molotov cocktails.  Shoulda done that first, ya morons.”
  • Page 17 – panels 2 and 3 are sweet.
  • Saying grace before a meal…
  • Nice twist at the end of the scene in the hospital between Rath and his daughter-in-law.
  • Final page is Rath true to form.

The Bad:

  • Read the first bullet to “The Ugly” and then jump back to read the rest of this…. “Oh wait, … we’re already in a hospital.”
  • Being the cop that shows Rath his son has been killed.
  • Not knowing Rath is behind you with a gun to your head as you finish saying grace before a meal…

The Ugly:

  • The opening splash.  “Oh my God! Somebody get this man to a hospital!”
  • Finding Rath’s bear trap when you’re on your way to kill him.
  • When the last thing you see says “Front Towards Enemy.”
  • What happens when Rath is behind you as you finish grace before a meal.


Men of Wrath #5 is for mature readers due to mature language and violence.


24 Things You Might Not Know About “Goodfellas”

Adam D’Arpino presents 24 Things You Might Not Know About Goodfellas.

Regular readers know the drill: using just D’Arpino’s list, here are my three favorite facts…

5. The famous “funny how?” scene wasn’t in the script.

Maybe the most famous (and certainly the most quoted) scene in Goodfellas comes at the beginning, when Pesci’s Tommy DeVito jokingly-yet-uncomfortably accosts Henry Hill for calling him “funny.” In addition to being the driving force behind the scene on screen, Pesci is also responsible for coming up with the premise.

While working in a restaurant, a young Pesci apparently told a mobster that he was funny—a compliment met with a less-than-enthusiastic response. Pesci relayed the anecdote to Scorsese, who decided to include it in the film. Scorsese didn’t include the scene in the shooting script so that Pesci and Liotta’s interactions would elicit surprised and genuine reactions from the supporting cast.

8. Only five murders take place on screen.

Despite its reputation as a violent movie, the number of on-screen deaths actually portrayed in Goodfellas is a surprisingly tame five (Spider, Billy Batts, Stacks Edwards, Morrie, and Tommy), or 10 if you include the results of Jimmy Conway’s handiwork following the Lufthansa heist. Of course, it’s worth mentioning that violence, and the threat of violence, is a constant presence throughout the film. Still, compared to a body count of 214 in John Woo’s Bullet in the Head, released in the same year, or 255 in Saving Private Ryan, or even 24 in Scorsese’s Best Picture winner The Departed, Goodfellas isn’t terribly bloody.

13. The real life Henry Hill was just as surprised as you are that he never got whacked.

Henry Hill’s testimony against some of the most ruthless and powerful Lucchese crime family associates led to roughly 50 convictions, his stint in witness protection was short-lived, and as Hill learns from the very beginning, rule number one in the wiseguy world is “never rat on your friends and always keep your mouth shut.” So why was Hill able to live to be a (relatively) old man and die of natural causes, instead of ultimately meeting a violent end like so many of his past associates?

According to Hill, he had absolutely no idea. In 2010, he told the Telegraph, “It’s surreal, totally surreal, to be here. I never thought I’d reach this wonderful age,” and hypothesized he was still standing simply because “there’s nobody from my era alive today.” Following his death in 2012, The Guardian hypothesized that bureaucratic disorganization in the organized crime world or fame might have kept Hill standing.

Click here for the full list.

Source: Mental_Floss.


Z-View: Dead Body Road #5

Dead Body Road is a six issue mini-series published by Image.

Writer: Justin Jordan

Penciler / Inker: Matteo Scalera

Colorist: Moreno Dinisio

Holed up and under siege, Gage and his accomplices may have run out of road…but not bullets. Or heads to put them through.


Dead Body Road #5  Justin Jordan and Matteo Scalera continue to create a comic that consistently entertains.

The Good

  • Justin Jordan and Matteo Scalera.  And when I say, “good” I mean great.
  • Justin Jordan’s message to the readers at the end of each issue.  Excellent feature!

The Bad:

  • Some people are going to be put off by the violence and profanity.
  • When you think you’ve got the drop on someone only to discover – “Surprise” – someone has the drop on you.

The Ugly:

  • Riding your motorcycle into a building with guns blazing only to meet a man with an axe.

Dead Body Road #5  is a comic for mature audiences due to violence and language.  If you’re a fan of crime/revenge stories then this is for you.  

Rating: 5 out of 5


The Devil Doesn’t Want Me

See the mug above.  That’s Eric Beetner.  

I first learned about him from his 60 Second Book Reviews blog.  Beetner’s reviews, for the books that I’ve read, are directly in line with my thoughts. So, if Beetner likes it, it’s a good bet that I will as well.

Then I learned Eric Beetner was a writer of crime fiction and his books were all getting 5 star reviews. Now I was intrigued.  So I bookmarked Beetner’s blog.

Next I discovered this trailer for Beetner’s The Devil Doesn’t Want Me. Nice.

So I broke down and ordered Beetner’s Dig Two Graves; One Too Many Blows to the Head and A Bouquet of Bullets.  I’ve read and enjoyed and highly recommend all of ’em.

“New” Theory on Who Killed JFK – “JFK: The Smoking Gun”

I was just five when President Kennedy was assassinated.  I was on vacation with my grandparents in Florida.  My grandfather had taken me with him on a quick trip to a supermarket.  A man came running into the store yelling that the president had been shot.  All of the adults seemed scared.  We hustled back to the hotel and my grandparents stayed glued to the tv to get the latest updates.

As the years passed, there was always a lot of talk about “who was really behind” the assassination.  Was it the mob?  LBK?  Castro?  With each passing year it seemed another theory rose up to explain how the most powerful man in the world was killed.  I read each theory and filed it away.  None seemed more plausible than it was a lone nut with a high powered rife.

Still, I was always willing to give the next theory a listen.

Now there’s a new documentary that is …

based on the work of Colin McLaren, a veteran Australian police detective who has undertaken a four-year investigation into the killing.

His theories are based on the work of Howard Donahue, who spent two decades probing the assassination and whose work was presented in the book Mortal Error: The Shot That Killed JFK, by Bonar Menninger.

This theory postulates that Oswald fired the first shot that hit President Kennedy.  Then as Secret Service Agent George Hickey drew his weapon and jumped on the back of the President’s Limo, his gun accidentally discharged shooting President Kennedy in the back of the head.  This theory also explains the…

…the different ballistic profiles of the two bullets that struck Kennedy… Mr Menninger insisted that they do not believe that Agent Hickey intentionally fired at Kennedy. Rather, the Huffington Post reported him as saying, ‘this was a tragic accident in the heat of the moment.’

But the pair do allege that the government moved swiftly, with the help of Kennedy’s brother Robert, to cover up the Secret Service’s involvement and save the agency from embarrassment.

While I don’t think that this new theory is more likely than a lone gunman with a high-powered rifle, I am willing to give it a listen.  JFK: The Smoking Gun will be broadcast on the Reelz Channel on November 3.

Thanks to Joey and the Huffington Post for the link.

Hinkson, Beetner & Robinson

Look what was waiting for me when I got home tonight…

The Posthumous Man by Jake Hinkson

When Elliot Stilling killed himself, he thought his troubles were over. Then the ER doctors revived him. It’s infatuation at first sight when he meets his nurse, Felicia Vogan, a strange young woman with a weakness for sad sacks and losers. After she helps Elliot escape from the hospital, she takes him back to her place. He’s happy to go with her, even when she leads him straight to a gang planning a  million dollar heist. Does Felicia just want Elliot to protect her from the outfit’s psychotic leader, Stan the Man? Or is Elliot being set up to take the hard fall? One thing’s for sure: if he’s going to survive this long night of deceit and murder, Elliot will have to finally face himself and his own dark past.

One Too Many Blows to the Head by Eric Beetner

Kansas City, 1939. One story from two points of view: the hunter and the hunted. Ray Ward – seeking revenge for his brother’s death in the boxing ring. Detective Dean Fokoli – hot on a killer’s trail.Ray’s hunt takes him underground into Kansas City’s criminal nightlife. Dean Fokoli lives there full time but he’s on the run from his own troubles. Two men racing forward to collide like a knockout punch.A razor-edged story of revenge, redemption and what happens when you confront the ghosts of the past.

Dirty Words by Todd Robinson

From the creator of–DIRTY WORDS The first collection from award-winning short story writer, Todd Robinson. Featuring: SO LONG JOHNNIE SCUMBAG—selected for The Year’s Best Writing 2003 by Writer’s Digest. The Derringer Award nominated short, ROSES AT HIS FEET THE LONG COUNT—selected as a Notable Story of the Year in Best American Mystery Stories 2005. PLUS eight more tales of in-your-face crime fiction.

Dig Two Graves by Eric Beetner

Dig Two Graves is a novella-length piece about Val, an ex-con who thinks he has figured out the trick to continuing his bank robbing life without ever getting caught. Except then he gets caught.

It’s not his plan that backfires, oh no. There’s a rat somewhere and Val is pretty damn sure who it is. Ernesto, his prison lover who has joined him on the outside as his partner in bank robbery.

Val stalks the city night on the hunt for Ernesto to exact revenge for breaking the ultimate criminal code: you don’t rat out a partner.

A Bouquet of Bullets by Eric Beetner

From Award-winning short story writer Eric Beetner comes a collection of hardboiled crime tales about losers, punks and wanna-be criminals. These gritty stories bleed and sweat all over the page, but always with a pitch black sense of humor. For fans of Victor Gischler and Duane Swierczynski as much as Cornell Woolrich and Raymond Chandler these crime tales represent the new wave in pulp writers at its best. Winner of the 2012 Stalker award for Most Underrated Author, a finalist in the Derringer Awards, the Watery Grave International and the Million Writers Award, Eric Beetner’s short stories have appeared in Thuglit, Needle Magazine, Crimefactory, A Twist Of Noir, Beat To A Pulp, Pulp Pusher, Powder Burn Flash, Darkest Before Dawn, Thrillers, Killers N Chillers, Flash Fiction Offensive and more.

The toughest part will be deciding which to read first.

Meet Crime Writer/Reviewer Eric Beetner

I first learned about Eric Beetner from his 60 Second Book Reviews blog.

Beetner and I like the same type of books [crime fiction]. His reviews, for the books that I’ve read, are directly in line with my thoughts. So, if Beetner likes it, it’s a good bet that I will as well.

Then I learned Eric Beetner was a writer of crime fiction and his books were all getting 5 star reviews. Now I was intrigued.  So I bookmarked Beetner’s blog.

Next I discovered this trailer for Beetner’s The Devil Doesn’t Want Me. Nice.

So the other night I broke down and ordered Beetner’s Dig Two Graves; One Too Many Blows to the Head and A Bouquet of Bullets.

Well played, Eric Beetner.  Well played.

TV’s Most Shocking Moments

Recently TV Squad ran a piece called the 50 Most Shocking TV Moments.  So using just their list, I came up with my top ten [beware, there are spoilers, but my guess is you already know them]:

10.  Snakes and Rats – ‘Survivor’ — ‘Season Finale’ (Aug. 23, 2000)
Sue Hawk’s rant was the talk of Survivor fans and helped make the show must see tv.  It shocked viewers and still is considered one of the “highlights” in the show’s history.

9. Mama of Anarchy – ‘Sons of Anarchy’ — ‘Albification’ (Sept. 8, 2009)
Sons of Anarchy has had a lot of shockingly brutal moments, but the rape of Gemma at the hands of white separtists was brutally shocking.

8. A Family Affair – ”The Shield’ — ‘Family Meeting’ (Nov. 25, 2008)
Shane and his family had been on the run and it was clear that there wasn’t a good ending waiting, but the fact that Shane killed his wife and kids and then himself was a shocking end to a character who had been on the show since the first episode.

7. Sinéad O’Connor Declares War – ‘Saturday Night Live’ — ‘Tim Robbins/Sinéad O’Connor’ (Oct. 3, 1992)
Sinéad O’Connor killed her career with her misguided act of protest.  She’d have better off to go on Oprah and jump on the couch.  O’Connor’s act of tearing up the picture of the Pope was and is so shocking that it’s only been seen on tv once since it happened.

6. Jumping the Couch – ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’ (May 23, 2005)
Tom Cruise was a box office superstar who could do no wrong… well, not counting that Brooke Shields incident… and then he started jumping on Oprah’s couch.  Again and again.  Faster than you could say whacky, Tom’s career was hurting and he was the butt of jokes everywhere.  Shocking then and even more shocking that his career still hasn’t fully recovered.

5. A Kiss Is Not Just a Kiss – ‘Star Trek’ — ‘Plato’s Stepchildren’ (Nov. 22, 1968)
I had just turned ten years old and still remember the first interracial kiss on television and how controversial it was.  At the time  didn’t understand the hoohal.  I mean Kirk was kissing all kinds of aliens, so why the big deal about kissing an attractive human?  Still, public reaction makes this a shocking moment.

4.  Two for the Death of One – ‘Lost’ — ‘Two for the Road’ (May 3, 2006)
When Michael shot and killed Ana Lucia I was shocked. Then Libby suddenly walked in, and Michael had to shoot her to cover up shooting Ana Lucia (which was done to cover up his release of Henry).  Well played, Lost writers.  You shocked us!

3.. Rocker Shocker – “American Idol’ — ‘Elvis Presley Week’ (May 10, 2006)
Many, myself included, thought that Chris Daughtry could win it all.  Everyone, including Daughtry himself was caught by surprise when he was voted out in the fourth spot.  After finding out he was leaving, Daughtry told Ryan Seacrest,”I’m a little bit in shock.” Who am I to argue with Daughtry.  Shocking it was.

2. “Chloe … Edgar …’24’ — ‘Day 5: 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.’ (March 6, 2006)
Some folks are expected to die on “24” but who would have thought that CTU geek Edgar Stiles would bite the bullet?  He was such a popular character, a love story seemed to be blooming and he worked in the CTU headquarters.  Who could be safer?  Definitely shocking.

1. Boob Tube, The Sequel – ‘Super Bowl XXXVIII Halftime Show’ (Feb. 1, 2004)
I remember watching the half time show and thinking that Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson would put on a good show.  When the, ahem, “wardrobe malfunction” happened, I remember thinking, “Did I just see that?”  Everyone else in the room had the same look.  Shocking indeed.

Here are a couple of other shocking tv moments that didn’t make the TV Squad’s list, but should have:

  • At the end of the first episode of the very first season of The Shield when Vic Makey kills the undercover cop.  That action completely changed the tone of the show and set into motion all the events to follow.
  • Season 19 of Survivor finale – Russell does not win after dominating the game, finding idols with no clues and completely out playing, out witting and out lasting all ofther contestants.

It would be shocking if I forgot to thank Bill Crider’s Pop Culture Magazine for the link.

AtlantaCon 2003 Report, Part 2

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So where did we leave off? Oh yeah…

I’m at AtlantaCon with my son, Mike. I’ve picked up sketches from Jason Alexander, Andy Lee, and Cully Hamner. Adam Hughes has told me that he’ll have my sketch ready on Sunday and somehow the day gets even better! How? Glad that you asked! Well, let me tell you.

AtlantaCon and teamed up to present a special screening of “Equilibrium” and a Q&A session with writer/director, Kurt Wimmer, to follow the movie. Seating was limited, but I was able to sign Mike and I up. The only thing that I knew about the movie was that it starred Christian Bale and Taye Diggs, was scifi, set in the future and received a pretty good word of mouth. I figured we’d be in for an entertaining evening even if the movie was just “ok.”

The screening was set to start at 7:30 but everyone was supposed to get there by seven. Mike and I arrived about 6:40 and a crowd was already forming. People were milling around. Mike and I ended up next to Nick from Chud. We had a pleasant conversation. I was pleased to learn that he knew of StalloneZone and had a warm place in his heart for Sly. Nick said that we were in for a very cool film with “Equilibrium” and that it was a movie that he was really proud to help promote. I also spoke briefly with Jen who has set up a very nice “Equilibrium” fan site.

Soon it was time to go in. Mike and I decided to take seats in the middle of the last row. People continued to come in and the theater was nearly full. Nick thanked us all for coming and said that Kurt Wimmer had flown in from LA to attend the screening. Kurt had also brought in drinks and chips for the crowd! As Mike went down to get a couple of sodas Cully Hamner, Phil Noto, Brian Stelfreeze, and Karl Story came in and sat directly in front of us. When Mike came back and saw them sitting there a giant smile came across his face. [For those of you who aren’t comic fans, this would be like driving to a basketball convention and having Michael Jordan, Vince Carter, and well, you get the idea, sitting in front of you.] Right before the movie started a gentleman and his young son took seats next to Mike.

The movie started and immediately took you to another place. It’s our world, but in the near future. The opening scene is so cool and so well done that I knew we were in for a ride. Then comes the action and – MAN – it is AWESOME! I loved Christian Bale‘s work in “Shaft” and “Reign of Fire” but “Equilibrium” shows that he is a star. Taye Diggs, Emily Watson and Sean Bean are also excellent… but the real star of the show is Kurt Wimmer who wrote and directed it.

Kurt has also written other screenplays including “The Recruit” and “The Thomas Crown Affair”. This guy is someone to lookout for! After the movie ended Kurt Wimmer was introduced and asked to come to the front of the auditorium for the Q&A session. The guy sitting next to Mike got up and took his son with him to the front! Mike looked at me like he couldn’t believe it… watching the movie with the Gaijin guys and the director of the movie! Kurt was really entertaining. He spent an hour answering questions about the film and pulling no punches. After the Q&A ended a group of us [including Brian Stelfreeze] stood in the lobby discussing how cool the film was. The dvd will be out in May. My advice is to pre-order now. I think this baby is a sleeper.

Sunday arrived. The final day of the show. The main question on my mind: Would Adam Hughes be able to get to my sketch? As we walked through the doors I heard John Higashi yelling, “Craig, come and see what Adam did for you!” Needless to say, I was excited. Adam had created a very, very cool drawing of Sly dressed for an audition for Superman. I absolutely love the idea and execution. Adam Hughes is da MAN! I got a picture of Adam holding the sketch and thanked him.

Phil Noto was setting up and I checked to see if he would be able to fit me in. Unfortunately Phil was booked solid. He did say that he would do something for me and asked if I would leave him my address. I left him my address and offered to pay for the sketch in advance but Phil said we’d settle up once he was finished with it. Believe me, it will be worth the wait! [Next on my list will, hopefully, be Brian Stelfreeze!]

Mike and I then went over to see Dan Brereton. We discussed a Stallone sketch. Dan was leaning towards a Rocky, but as he looked through my reference book he mentioned that he really liked “Nighthawks.” I said whatever he wanted to do was fine by me. He said to check back in a couple of hours.

Mike and decided to visit some artists one last time. Mike got a headshot of Batman by Phil Hester; Batman Attacked by Dave Cook of Splatter Comix. Tim Flanagan drew Mike a nice Batman. Our final stop before heading back over to check on the progress of the Bererton piece was with Jacen Burrows. Jacen was doing some really interesting sketches. Mike got one for his sketchbook. I asked Jacen if he’d be interested in doing a Sly drawing for me. He said he would, but that he’d want to do it at home. We agreed on a price and Jacen said he’d have it to me in about a month!

Mike and I then headed back over to Dan Breretons table. The piece was finished and it was a knockout! Dan had opted to do Deke DaSilva from “Nighthawks!” I got a picture of Dan and his lovely lady, thanked him and Mike and I got back on the road for home.

It was a great show. I’ll post pictures of the artists and their artwork later this week. Mike and I hope to return next year. Maybe we’ll see you there!