<![CDATA[NBC 6 South Florida - TV, movies, music and celebrity news]]> Copyright 2014 http://www.nbcmiami.com/entertainment/entertainment-news http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC+6+LOGO+GOOGLE.png NBC 6 South Florida http://www.nbcmiami.com en-us Thu, 24 Jul 2014 00:26:19 -0400 Thu, 24 Jul 2014 00:26:19 -0400 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Comic-Con: Thursday's Big Events]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 17:05:07 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/thunderbird-1.jpeg

Following Wednesday evening's brief preview, Comic-Con makes the jump to light speed Thursday when the first full day of events kicks-off in San Diego.

A celebration of what's hot in comic books, film, TV, video games, costumes and collectibles, the four-day festival is expected to attrack around 150,000 fans to the San Diego convention center and environs.

Fan-boys and -girls will flock to the big events - especially the cast reveals and sneak peeks of highly-aniticipated blockbuster movies. This year's titles lighting up the pop cutlure radar include "Mad Max: Fury Road," "Avengers: Age of Ultron," "Antman," Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" and the final installment of the latest Tolkien-based trilogy, "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies."

NEWS Happy 75th Birthday Batman: The Enduring Appeal of the Dark Knight

TV series loyalists can get their fill of "Game of Thrones," "The Walking Dead," "Orphan Black," "The Vampire Diaries" and "Gotham," the Batman-based police procedural from Fox that will debut in the fall.

Check back throughout the convention for updates on what's happening, the hot news and all the latest celebrity pics.

And don't forget to download the official NBC Comic-Con 2014 App to optimize your fan experience.

Here's what we're excited for on Thursday July 24:

Spotlight on Bill Finger, the Co-Creator of Batman

2014 marks the 25th anniversary of the movie "Batman" and the 75th anniversary of character's debut. And Bill Finger, the Caped Crusader's co-creator, would have turned 100 this year. At this special panel, Finger's living descendants Athena Finger ("The Cape Creator: A Tribute to Bill Finger") and her son Benjamin will celebrate his life and achievements. Others on the panel include Bob Kane's biographer Tom Andrae ("Batman and Me"), actress Lee Meriwether ("Batman: The Movie's" Catwoman), author Marc Tyler Nobleman ("Bill the Boy Wonder: The Secret Co-Creator of Batman") and executive producer Michael Uslan ("Batman," "The Dark Knight film trilogy"). 11:30 a.m. Room 4

USA Network Teases "DIG"

USA's newest series "DIG" will make its debut at Comic-Con. The show follows an FBI agent stationed in Jerusalem, who, while investigating a murder, uncovers a global conspiracy 2,000 years in the making. Series stars, Jason Isaacs ("Harry Potter"), David Costabile ("Breaking Bad") and Alison Sudol ("A Fine Frenzy" will discuss the series' concepts and attendees will be treated to an exclusive preview before "DIG" premieres in the fall. 11:30 a.m. Indigo Ballroom, Hilton San Diego Bayfront

NEWS Secrets Behind Comic-Con's Exclusive Toys Revealed

Charles Schulz and Social Commentary in Peanuts

Through the gentle humor and slapstick antics of the "Peanuts" gang, creator Charles Schulz quietly offered up a look at the social and political climate of the changing world around him. This presentation by Corry Kanzenberg (curator, Charles M. Schulz Museum) explores the intersection of "Peanuts" and the topical world, and is followed by a Q & A panel featuring Seth Green ("Robot Chicken," "Family Guy") and Art Roche (content director, Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates). 12:00 p.m. Room 25ABC

NASA's Next Giant Leap

The 45th annual Comic-Con coincides with the 45th anniversary of the moon landing, and to celebrate NASA is making its first official appearance at the San Diego fest. "NASA's Next Giant Leap" will be moderated by actor Seth Green with a panel featuring Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin, current NASA astronaut Mike Fincke, NASA Planetary Science Division Director Jim Green, and JPL systems engineer Bobak Ferdowsi ("Mohawk Guy" from the Curiosity rover landing). They'll be discussing NASA's plans to send humans deeper into the solar system than ever before, and the Orion spacecraft and Space Launch System rocket, which will carry humans to Mars. 3:00 p.m. Room 6A

DC Comics: Batman 75: Legends of the Dark Knight

Batman has become one of the most enduring characters in popular culture. To celebrate the Dark Knight's 75th anniversary, legendary Batman creators Neal Adams, Geoff Johns, Jim Lee, Frank Miller, Grant Morrison, Denny O'Neil, and Scott Snyder will man this historic panel to discuss the great detective's legacy. 3:30 p.m. Room 6BCF

Comic-Con 2014: What We're Geeking Out Over

"Thunderbirds" at 50

5, 4, 3, 2 ... 1 - Thunderbirds are go. The beloved British series featuring marionettes and incredible rescue craft that fueled the imaginations of kids of all ages in the 1960s gets the Comic-Con treatment 50 years since it first debuted. Originally created by Gerry and Sylvia Anderson, "Thunderbirds" is currently being given a CGI reboot by ITV and will return to screen in 2015 as "Thunderbirds Are Go."  Creators and producers of the new series will discuss the importance of heritage programming and what's next for the Tracy family and their heroic rescues. 4:30 p.m. Room 8

"Hannibal": Embrace the Madness

The creative minds behind the award-winning NBC TV series "Hannibal" are getting together. What's on the menu? Season 3 dish and what goes on behind-the-scenes. Panel speakers include executive producer/creator Bryan Fuller and stars Caroline Dhavernas (Dr. Alana Bloom), Scott Thompson, and Aaron Abrams (Special Agents Jimmy Price and Brian Zeller). 4:45 p.m. Ballroom 20

The Heroes of "Star Wars Rebels"

This new animated series explores the 20-year stretch of "Star Wars" history between Episodes III and IV, and it's a dark time in the galaxy. "Star Wars Rebels" executive producers Dave Filoni and Simon Kinberg as well as series stars Freddie Prinze, Jr., Vanessa Marshall, Steve Blum, Tiya Sircar, and Taylor Gray will offer up a preview of this highly-anticipated series coming to Disney XD in the fall. 6:00 p.m. Room 6BCF

"Sharknado 2: The Second One"

A Sharknado is about to hit the Big Apple! "Sharknado 2: The Second One" stars Ian Ziering, Tara Reid, Kari Wuhrer, and Judah Friedlander and director Anthony C. Ferrante discuss the sequel to the SyFy TV movie that became a social media phenom in 2013. 7:15 p.m. Room 6BCF



Photo Credit: ITV]]>
<![CDATA[WATCH: Johnson, Fallon "Hustle to Get the Muscle"]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 06:50:40 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/452537218.jpg

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Jimmy Fallon hilariously pretended to be an unsuccessful TV fitness duo on Tuesday’s episode of “The Tonight Show.”

Before the two began their workout, Fallon talked about a 1996 photo that the “Hercules” star posted on Instagram. The two proceeded to poke fun at his dated attire in the picture.

“You basically broke the internet with a throwback photo from 1996,” Fallon joked. “I want to talk about the chain around the turtleneck, the Fanny pack and the rag under your elbow, so you don’t get any dust on your turtleneck sleeve.”

“That’s a Tag watch, a fake tag, but I’m owning it,” Johnson said.

Then, Fallon presented Johnson with an action figure of version of the Instagram picture. You can see the action figure in the video below.

Finally, Johnson and Fallon pretended to be a semi-famous fitness duo from the 1980s in a series of vintage workout videos.

As “The Fungo Brothers,” the two used a thigh-strengthening device, performed the dance move “The Twist,” and used Shake Weights. The two also repeated their catchphrase: "You've got to hustle to get the muscle."

Watch the hilarious skit above and below.



Photo Credit: NBC/NBCU Photo Bank]]>
<![CDATA[Meyers Reveals Live New Yorker Cartoons]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 04:48:16 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/New-Yorker-Cartoons.png While New Yorker editor David Remnick stopped by "Late Night," Meyers used the opportunity to recreate some of the publication's cartoons live.]]> <![CDATA[Johnson Receives Action Figure From Jimmy Fallon]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 04:45:10 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/452537196.jpg Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson receives an action figure version of an unflattering Instagram throwback picture that trended on social media. Johnson also tells Jimmy Fallon about his new movie "Hercules."]]> <![CDATA[Johnson, Fallon Reveal Workout Videos ]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 13:53:24 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/180*120/452537256.jpg Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Jimmy Fallon show fake clips of a semi-famous fitness duo called, "The Fungo Brothers." Part 2 of 2.]]> <![CDATA[Johnson, Fallon Reveal Workout Videos ]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 13:53:38 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/452537254.jpg Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Jimmy Fallon show fake clips of a semi-famous fitness duo called, "The Fungo Brothers." Part 1 of 2.]]> <![CDATA[Happy Birthday Batman: the Dark Knight Turns 75]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 10:21:02 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/GalleryComics_1900x900_20140716_BM_75YEARS_538d08b108efe7.84144989.jpg

Caped Crusader, World's Greatest Detective and Dark Knight. Just three of the titles bestowed upon Batman in the 75 years since he first appeared in the story, "The Case of the Chemical Syndicate," published in DC Comics' "Detective Comics" #27.

Since then, the crusader in the bat-eared cowl has been reimagined countless times. Not only on the pages of comic books but on television (live-action and animated), in feature films (big screen outings combined have earned more than $3.5 billion at the global box office), in graphic novels, as the star of video games, in fan fiction and as countless toys (including Lego). He's been the inspiration for tattoos and fashion; Batman even influences beards and mustaches.

To honor the 1939 creation of artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger, DC has declared July 23 to be Batman Day. (And they're celebrating by slashing the price of 750 digital Batman titles to $.99 each for one week only beginning July 22.)

"He's a major part of all of our lives here. Arguably the most popular superhero in the world," says DC Entertainment co-publisher and comic book creator Jim Lee, who notes that the largest family within the DC lineup is the Batman family of books. "There is a humongous appetite for anything Batman-related"

WATCH: First Trailer for New Batman Series "Gotham" Released

Over the decades, fans of millionaire Bruce Wayne and his bat alter-ego have flocked to newsstands, comic conventions, TV screens and theaters to pay homage to the character that has transcended decades and genres.

"Batman has probably the most affecting, primal origin story of any superhero," says Michael E. Uslan, executive producer of every big screen Batman adaption since 1989 "Batman" directed by Tim Burton and starring Michael Keaton in the title role. "His origin story is that of a kid who sees his parents murdered before his own eyes in the street and at that moment makes a decision – in the belief that one person can make a difference in the world – to get the guy who did this. And to get all the bad guys, even if he has to walk through hell for the rest of his life to accomplish it.

"That’s a story that transcends age, demographics, borders and cultures," continues Uslan, who is also executive producing the Caped Crusader's next film installment, "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice," scheduled to hit theaters in 2016. "And I think that is an essential reason Batman works all around the world."

DC

He's also one of the most relatable superheroes ever created.

"Batman not having superpowers is part of the appeal, but in my mind it’s not the fact that he doesn’t have the powers, it’s the fact that we can all relate to not being the strongest one in the room," says Lee, who has penned and overseen various incarnations of the character during his career at DC. "It’s the fact that he is the underdog – whether he is in the Justice League or taking on a villain with super powers, he’s just like you or me and has to rely on his training to get him through. That really makes him such an inspiration. He is the ultimate underdog who more often than not prevails."

Multiple access points to the franchise has fed fascination for the character and allows fans to experience numerous storylines across varied platforms. Today, the majority of new fans come to the comic books after seeing one of the movies, the animated TV series, or played one of the hit "Batman: Arkham" video games.

NEWS Comic-Con: What We're Geeking Out Over

Rather than dilute the franchise, Lee believes such broad exposure on multiple platforms only strengthens the individual iterations and leads to greater creativity. "When you look at the huge marketing budgets behind these blockbuster movies and video games, you see their ability to reach millions of potential readers all over the world." True to his over-riding passion, though, Lee still takes pride in the fact that "comics still remain the source material for so many of these great adaptations and media representation of the character."

Even artists entrusted to expand the Batman mythos in comic form have arrived at Wayne Manor via portals such as the campy 1960's live-action TV series starring Adam West. 

It was that incarnation first encountered by artist Graham Nolan, who drew Batman for DC in the early '90s and created the look of the now-iconic villain Bane. "That was my first introduction to the world of comics and I always loved Batman, primarily because of that TV show," says Nolan.

Nolan admits there is pleasure in being associated with a character that goes back 75 years, but says he never set out to create a hugely popular villain. Bane first appeared in "Batman: Vengeance of Bane" #1 (January 1993) and "for some reason the character resonated. It hit all the right buttons at the right time. Bane's involvement in the big storyline endeared him to a lot of fans and he fit perfectly into the rogues' gallery of villains." 

PHOTOS Batman Through the Years

And while Batman's humanity and quest for justice are constant audience touchstones, it's the villains that never fail to shock, delight, horrify, and most importantly perhaps, continue to draw audiences in to the detective's dark world.

"I subscribe to [Marvel Comics guru] Stan Lee's theory of supervillains," says Uslan. "Stan says the greatest superheroes, the most long lasting superheroes, are the ones that have had the greatest supervillains. And Batman’s rogues' gallery of supervillains is the best. With the Joker inarguably being the best supervillain ever created."

Joining the jokester with the maniacal grin in this police lineup of Gotham City's baddest are the umbrella-wielding Penguin, Catwoman, ancient assassin Ra's Al Ghul, The Riddler, Poison Ivy, Bane, Two-Face, and the faceless Hush.

DC/Comic-Con

But enemies and age show no sign of slowing the Bat. From Frank Miller's seminal 1986 graphic novel "The Dark Knight Returns" (which heavily influenced the live-action films of directors Burton and Chris Nolan that followed), to "Batman: The Animated Series" and through continuing comic-based adventures created by writer Scott Snyder and artist Greg Capullo, it appears Batman is only hitting his stride.

In the fall, Fox is set to premiere "Gotham," a new origin series based around the auxiliary characters of the Batman universe. Based on the video games, "Batman: Assault on Arkham" is a new animated feature that will make its debut at Comic-Con on July 25 and be released digitally on July 29. A plethora of anthologies and merchandise marking his 75 years have been published, and "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" will land on the big screen in 2016.

While executive producer Uslan won't directly address any questions concerning the highly-anticipated big-budget film, he describes the accord between the titular characters in the DC universe as being "one of the strongest kind of buddy film relationships that you will find in the world of comics. ... The greatest partnership in the history of comics has been that of Batman and Superman. It goes back to World’s Fair Comics 1940 when they appeared together on the cover for the first time." 

DC's Lee hopes Batman hangs around for another 75 years, and personally wishes to return to drawing the character one day: "I’ve got some storylines I started that never quite got completely finished. Fortunately I have years hopefully ahead of me to tell those stories."

First it's celebration time at Comic-Con. Batman graces the cover of this year's souvenir program, and numerous panels are devoted to the Caped Crusader. Lee will sit in on a couple of discussions and describes from past experiences that a room full of Batman fans is always "very-charged," and likens making an appearance in one as being similar to a stand-up comic nailing every joke of the set. "They get every everything and laugh at every joke. They are there to want to have an awesome public display of their love of Batman."

 



Photo Credit: DC Comics - Scott Williams/Jim Lee]]>
<![CDATA[WATCH: Hudson, Fallon Play "Box of Lies"]]> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 08:35:12 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/452492984ffff.jpg

Kate Hudson and Jimmy Fallon took turns trying to stump each other about items hidden inside of mystery boxes on Monday’s “Tonight Show.”

But first, Hudson talked about Zach Braff, who directed and stars alongside her in the new movie “Wish I Was Here.”

“I’ve known him for so long. He’s real sensitive,” Hudson said. “I was like 'I wonder if he’s going to be a sensitive director’,” she joked.

“He was amazing," Hudson also said of Braff's directing. "The way he attacked it was just a beautiful and inspiring thing to watch."

Finally, Hudson and Fallon played a game of "Box of Lies." The two took turns trying to stump each other about what item was hidden inside various mystery boxes.

Fallon has also played the game with actress Jennifer Lawrence.

Watch the two play in the videos above and below.



Photo Credit: NBC/NBCU Photo Bank]]>
<![CDATA[Meyers Gives Himself Affirmations]]> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 06:36:11 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Screen+Shot+2014-07-22+at+5.16.14+AM+1+copy.png Seth Meyers boosts the old self-esteem with some positive affirmations on "Late Night."]]> <![CDATA[Meyers: Braff Talks Bar Mitzvah]]> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 06:27:09 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/NUP_164796_0334.JPG Zach Braff talks about his musical theater-themed Bar Mitzvah on "Late Night With Seth Meyers."]]> <![CDATA["Tonight" Superlatives: Tour de France]]> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 06:36:40 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/214*120/Screen+Shot+2014-07-22+at+4.33.37+AM.png Jimmy Fallon hands out superlatives to 2014 Tour de France cyclists.]]> <![CDATA[Hudson, Fallon Play "Box of Lies" (Part 2)]]> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 06:21:08 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/452493012.jpg Jimmy Fallon and Kate Hudson take turns trying to stump each other about what item is hidden inside their mystery boxes (part 2).

Photo Credit: NBC/NBCU Photo Bank]]>
<![CDATA[Hudson, Fallon Play "Box of Lies" (Part 1)]]> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 06:18:06 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/452493002.jpg Jimmy Fallon and Kate Hudson take turns trying to stump each other about what item is hidden inside their mystery boxes (part 1).]]> <![CDATA[Famous Mug Shots: Destiny's Child Singer Arrested]]> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 14:34:20 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/edt-destiny-child.jpg See the photos of the famous and infamous.

Photo Credit: Horry County Sheriff's Office]]>
<![CDATA[The Queen's Guard Performs "GoT" Theme]]> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 11:46:56 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/queens-guard-AP299534238302.jpg
The Queen's Guard has treated onlookers to a rendition of the "Game of Thrones" theme song outside of the Buckingham Palace. Travelers gather from throughout world to see the changing of the guards every morning. No doubt "Game of Thrones" fanatics were doubly pleased. 
 
This isn't the first time the Queen has shown her fandom. Last month, the reigning queen of the House of Windsor visited the show's set and saw the Iron Throne, which is the center of the mythical Westeros, with the show's creators, David Benioff and Dan Weiss. For the Brits' sake, we hope the Queen isn't getting her reigning tips from the Lannisters.
 
The catchy theme song has been subjected to several remakes, including this jazzy lick from the Swamp Donkeys.

 
Funny man Wil Wheaton did his own rendition of the entire opening scene with a genius hybrid of the HBO series and the Brady Bunch.
 
 

 
DJ-turned-actor Kristian Nairn will likely showcase his own version of the theme song during his new tour, "Rave of Thrones." Best known for his role as "Hodor," a man of very few words, Nairin will start a six-show DJ tour in Australia at the end of August. The set will showcase "the deepest house from all seven kingdoms," according to a release. With a "Game of Thrones" mandatory dress code, Australia might be briefly plagued with countless Khaleesis, Tyrions, Snows and maybe a White Walker or two.

"Game of Thrones" has had tremendous success, confirmed whenit was announced it is the most popular HBO series of all time, beating out "The Sopranos" for that title. The show earned 19 noms for the upcoming Emmy Awards, including best drama series.

After an explosive season four finale — Tyrion finally obtained revenge on his father, Arya is off on her own and Jon Snow betrayed the wildlings for good — fans await a lively fifth season, which will premiere in spring 2015.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[The Garner Files]]> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 06:59:47 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/479754195.jpg

“The Rockford Files” always opened with a phone message for knockabout private detective Jim Rockford – offering a bitter mouthful from bill collectors, bookies, the IRS, repo men, ex-girlfriends, long lost relatives he would have preferred to stay lost and thugs spewing bodily threats (“Hey, Rockford. Very funny. I ain’t laughing. You’re gonna get yours.”). 

Rockford’s bad news signaled the start of great news for fans of the NBC 1974-to-1980 Friday night staple, setting the (dial) tone for another turn – filled with 180-degree hairpin turns in his battered Firebird – by the sardonic private eye who absorbed more than his share of black eyes, physically and otherwise (though mostly physically).
 
From “Maverick” to “The Great Escape” to “Victor/Victoria” to his Polaroid commercials with Mariette Hartley, James Garner connected with audiences by exuding rugged charm and a put-upon Everyman persona during a remarkable six-decade TV and movie career. But Garner, who died Saturday at age 86, will be best remembered for giving us Jim Rockford, a relatable lug of an anti-hero for his time – and all time.
 
“The Rockford Files” debuted 40 years ago this September, barley a month after Richard Nixon became the first U.S. president to resign from office amid a breach of faith. Trustworthy characters also were nowhere to be found on “The Rockford Files,” where the major suspense would revolve around who would get in the first sucker punch or betrayal.
 
For all the show’s car chases, Rockford biggest race was to keep one con ahead of his foes or even his often deceitful clients. The (wrongly convicted) ex-jailbird knew the game and played it – Rockford wasn’t above breaking and entering, or impersonation – though usually not particularly well.  
 
Rockford, who lived in a ramshackle Malibu trailer that seemed to get ransacked by goons at least once an episode, eluded glamour far better than he did the legions after a piece of the $200 a day (plus expenses) that clients rarely bothered to pay him.
 
The most reliable part of Rockford’s’ world was his (mostly) unreliable friends, whose names he would spout in two syllables of exasperation. There was the endearingly sleazy conman Angel (Stuart Margolin), and Dennis (Joe Santos), the cranky police sergeant with a reluctant symbiotic relationship with Rockford. There were memorable guest appearances by Rockford’s tough ex-cellmate Gandy (Isaac Hayes), who endlessly annoyed him by calling him “Rockfish,” and ex-prostitute and spirited Rockford pal Rita Capkovic (Rita Moreno in her Emmy-winning role). Rockford’s tough and loyal, if befuddled and trouble-prone dad Rocky (Noah Beery Jr.) provided the closest thing to stability in his life.
 
“The Rockford Files” debuted in a TV season packed with more than 20 cop or detective shows, ranging from “Baretta” to “Barnaby Jones.” Save for the sitcom “Barney Miller,” Garner’s program emerged as the only one primarily fueled by a comic sensibility. “Rockford” co-creator Stephen J. Cannell would go on to produce other successful shows combining action and humor, most notably “The A Team” and “The Greatest American Hero.” But “Rockford” remains the best and most durable of the prolific TV powerhouse’s creations.

Chalk that up to the talent of James Garner, an actor who turned his likeable character's flaws into strengths. Some viewers wanted to be Jim Rockford, while others would have been satisfied to be his friend – someone whose messages the detective might actually have returned.

 

Jere Hester is founding director of the award-winning, multi-media NYCity News Service at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. He is also the author of "Raising a Beatle Baby: How John, Paul, George and Ringo Helped us Come Together as a Family." Follow him on Twitter.



Photo Credit: NBC/NBCU Photo Bank]]>
<![CDATA[Comic-Con: What We're Geeking Out Over]]> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 19:21:34 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Star+Wars+Rebels.jpg

The annual migration of geeks, fan-boys and -girls, collectors, aficionados and cosplayers is about to commence: Comic-Con International kicks off Thursday in San Diego.

The mega-convention of almost everything pop culture runs July 24 through 27, and the Southern California city will be awash with outrageous costumes, A-list stars, informative panels, limited-edition merchandise, fan-based art and yes, of course, aisles of rare and hard-to-find comic books.

From its humble beginnings as a one-off comic book event in 1970 in the basement of San Diego's U.S. Grant Hotel, the event now now attracts more than 130,000 people to the San Diego Convention Center and adjacent Gaslamp Quarter area.

This year's fest offers sneak peeks of highly-anticipated big-screen fare including "Avengers: Age of Ultron," "Mad Max: Fury Road," " The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" and "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice," as well as hot TV properties such as "Constantine," "The Walking Dead," "Game of Thrones," "Supernatural," "The Blacklist" and "True Blood."

Remember to check back regularly during the convention for a daily list of what's hot, recaps from the biggest panels, in-depth features and all the news straight from San Diego. And don't forget to download the official NBC 2014 Comic-Con App.

Here, a few of the things at Comic-Con 2014 we're already geeking out over:

"Star Wars Rebels"

Lucasfilm is promoting its latest offering from a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. "Star Wars Rebels" is a new animated series which will air on Disney XD in the fall. It's set five years before the events of "Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope" and tells the story of the Rebellion’s beginnings while the Empire spreads tyranny through the galaxy.

Fans can get on the inside track with this new show at The Heroes of "Star Wars Rebels" panel at 6:00 p.m. in Room 6BCF on Thursday.

Unfortunately, the highly-anticipated "Star Wars: Episode VII" will not be present at this year's convention, but fans can already start getting excited over the new film's appearance at 2015 Comic-Con.  

 

NASA's Next Giant Leap

To honor the 45th anniversary of the moon landing, NASA is making its first official landing at Comic-Con with panel featuring Buzz Aldrin (Apollo 11 astronaut), moderator Seth Green (actor, writer, director and producer), Dr. Jim Green (NASA's division director of planetary science), Mike Fincke (NASA astronaut), and "Mohawk Guy" Bobak Ferdowsi (Curiosity and Europa Missions).

Join the queue early Thursday for the 3:00 p.m. panel in Room 6A to hear real-life tales from orbit, as well as NASA's future far-out plans, including the Orion multi-purpose crew vehicle and the Space Launch System rocket, which are designed to carry humans beyond low-earth orbit to asteroids and ultimately Mars.

 

Batman Turns 75

The caped crusader is marking a milestone anniversary in 2014 and serving up a plethora of panels and sneak peeks in celebration. Fans of Gotham's Dark Knight and his adversaries can get their fill of all things Batman, including Warners Bros. official preview at their Hall H gathering (Saturday, July 26, 2014, 10:00 a.m.), DC Comics: Legends of the Dark Knight (Thursday, July 24, 2014, 3:30 p.m. - Room 6BCF), Batman in the 1970s (Thursday, July 24, 2014, 1:00 p.m. - Room 5AB), Batman in the '80s and '90s (Friday, July 25, 2014, 12:30 p.m. - Room 5AB), Batman '66 featuring TV franchise icons Adam West, Burt Ward, and Julie Newmar (Thursday, July 24, 2014, 6:00 p.m. - Hall H), DC Comics-Batman: The Eternal Dark Knight (Friday, July 25, 2014, 1:45 p.m. - Room 6DE), World Premiere of "Batman: Assault on Arkham" (Friday, July 25, 2014, 7:00 p.m. - Ballroom 20), LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham (Sunday, July 27, 2014, 1:00 p.m. - Room 6BCF), and DC Entertainment: Batman 75th Anniversary (Saturday, July 26, 2014, 4:00 p.m. - Room 6BCF).

 

"Constantine"  Pilot Screening and Q&A

John Constantine is a man waging war against the forces of darkness — from both within himself and the outside world — in the new series "Constantine" coming to NBC.

 

A working-class con man and occult expert, he's voluntarily checked himself into an asylum and sworn off investigating matters of the supernatural after a tragic accident. But when a cryptic message arrives, he is called out to resume his old life and battle the gathering forces of darkness.

Based on characters published by DC Entertainment ("Hellblazer"), the series stars Matt Ryan ("Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior"), Harold Perrineau ("Lost") and Charles Halford ("True Detective"). The actors and show producers will take questions at the panel on Saturday, July 26, 2014, 5:15 p.m. - Room 6BCF. "Constantine" will premiere on NBC at 10/9C on October 24.

 

HBO Presents the Comic-Con International 2014 Masquerade

2014 marks the 40th Comic-Con Masquerade, and Ballroom 20 becomes cosplay central. Attendees will strut their fabulous original and re-created costumes in front of a panel of guest judges. Awards will be handed out in front of an audience of more than 4,000 for Best In Show, Judges’ Choice, Best Re-Creation, Best Original Design, Best Workmanship, Best Presentation, Most Beautiful and Best Young Fan.

Doors will open for audience seating at 7:45 p.m., but the line will start much earlier. Tickets for seating will be given out free to those lining up near Ballroom 20 beginning at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, with overflow seating available in Rooms 5AB, 6A and in the Sails Pavilion (tickets not required). Saturday, July 26, 2014, 8:30 p.m. - Ballroom 20.

 

 

 



Photo Credit: Disney/Lucasfilm]]>
<![CDATA[Aykroyd Sings Brown's "I'll Go Crazy" on "Tonight"]]> Sat, 19 Jul 2014 17:28:50 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/cms+copy3.jpg

Dan Aykroyd’s entrance on "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon," was nothing short of soulful when he strutted into the studio singing James Brown’s “I’ll Go Crazy."

Aykroyd linked arms with longtime blues singer Bobby Rush mid-song and brought him to the stage to to finish the 1963 hit.

The “Saturday Night Live” alum stars in the upcoming James Brown biopic, “Get On Up” as Ben Bart, the director of Brown’s talent agency.

Aykroyd’s “Tonight Show” performance wasn’t the first time he sang “I’ll Go Crazy." He performed the classic at the 26th Kennedy Center Honors in 2003 when Brown had been recognized.

“When James got that very strange rainbow clip, clothespin thing that they give, he was thinking of retiring at the time and so I sang it to dissuade him," said Aykroyd, repeating the lyrics, "If you leave me I’ll go crazy.’”

Aykroyd and Fallon both shared stories of Brown and took turns at imitating his voice. Fallon recalled the story when the late singer told actor Eddie Murphy to bury his money in the woods, “so the government doesn’t get it.”

"Get On Up" stars Chadwick Boseman and Octavia Spencer and follows the life of Brown from living in poverty to becoming an iconic singer. 

WATCH Aykroyd's interview on the "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" below: 

 

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<![CDATA[Jimmy Fallon Pens "Thank You Notes" on "Tonight"]]> Sat, 19 Jul 2014 08:30:57 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/nbc_tjf_hlt_s01e89_089_ThankYouNotes_20140718_1200x675_308390979625.jpg Jimmy Fallon takes the time to write his weekly thank you notes to Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling as well as Amazon and the music group "Boys II Men." ]]> <![CDATA[Robots, Tampons and Building Dreams]]> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 16:52:36 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Underwater-dreams-pelicula1.jpeg

Four undocumented high school students won a prestigious NASA-sponsored robotics competition a decade ago by building a robot out of PVC pipes, duct tape and tampons. Now, their story is being told through the new documentary “Underwater Dreams.”

Christian Arcega, Lorenzo Santillan, Luis Aranda and Oscar Vasquez – the team representing Carl T. Hayden Community High in Arizona – entered their robot, nicknamed Stinky, in the competition at the University of California at Santa Barbara.

Few expected the Hayden team, faced with stiff competition from top engineering universities like MIT, to succeed, especially considering Stinky was pieced together with cheap parts bought at Home Depot.

Sure enough, when they first put Stinky in the water, the robot sank. So the kids got creative: They added eight super-plus tampons to plug leaks in the robot’s mechanical victory.

It worked.

"You have four kids that come from nothing, and look what they did," documentary maker Mary Mazzio told the Associated Press in a recent interview. "There are millions of kids like them. All they need is a little bit of opportunity to flourish."

The film is being released amid a surge of undocumented children are crossing the border, sparking the country’s already intense immigration debate.

The documentary, which includes actual footage from the competition, incorporates interviews from the students themselves, their parents and members of the losing MIT robotics team. It also stresses the importance of closing the Latino student achievement gap, especially in STEM education.

"Underwater Dreams" was released on Friday, July 11, at AMC Empire 25 in New York and AMC Burbank in Los Angeles.

Beginning July 19, AMC will host 100 free screenings to community organizations across the country.

MSNBC and Telemundo will simultaneously broadcast a special television version of “Underwater Dreams” (in both English and Spanish) on Sunday, July 20, at 1 p.m. ET. Mun2 will broadcast the following day. 

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