SAN DIEGO – By far, the strangest moment from any Comic-Con for me now has got to be when Vin Diesel stopped the panel today to thank me for supporting “Pitch Black” back in the early days of Ain’t It Cool. He told the story of bringing the film to the first Butt-Numb-A-Thon and talked about how that was the first experience he had with an audience watching the film.
Now, thirteen years later, it was a pleasure to be able to moderate the panel for “Riddick,” the third film in which Vin plays the optically-challenged Furyan warrior who tends to kill everything he comes into contact with. Writer/director David Twohy was also on the panel this morning, along with “Battlestar Galactica” star Katee Sackhoff, who plays a bounty hunter named Dahl in the film.
One of the things that made the Universal panel a bit of a challenge for the studio is that both of the films they brought this year are very R-rated, and Hall H is an inclusive place where you have families and fans of all ages and people who are in there from first thing in the morning until the end of the day. You have to be aware of that, and yet you also want to give the audience a taste of what they can genuinely expect from the film when they finally see it.
I think it was smart of Universal to cut two versions of the presentations they made today. The first version was the one shown in Hall H, where they hinted at the crazy nature of the movies and they pushed right up to the limit of what Comic-Con is comfortable with them showing. The second version is the one that they released online moments after the panel ended.
That’s the one we’ve got for you embedded above.
I love that the new “Riddick” gets back to basics, but it manages to be a direct sequel to both of the earlier films with the character. Where we find Riddick at the start of the film is a direct result of where we saw him at the end of the last one, and then later in the film, we meet a team of bounty hunters who have been trying to track Riddick down because of the events of “Pitch Black.”
I’m thrilled that it went well today, and I still can’t believe that was Vin’s first time in Hall H. Couldn’t have gone better.
“Riddick” opens in theaters September 6, 2013.