Scott Pilgrim vs. The World Panel
Writer-director Edgar Wright steps out to big applause. He cracks a joke that he’s never had to follow Sylvester Stallone before (Stallone’s panel for The Expendables was immediately before this one). He said he plans to challenge him to an arm-wrestling match backstage, Over the Top style. “We have 13 guests coming out, and I’m not sure they can combine to beat one Lundgren,” he laughed before explaining how he first read O’Malley’s comics shortly after volume one came out. “It was love at first sight,” he said noting he couldn’t be more proud that he got the movie made six years late.
Wright introduces a clip reel showing side-by-side comparisons of the film and the comic book.
Wright then brings out Scott Pilgrim creator Bryan Lee O’Malley. When he asks O’Malley what he thinks about being here in Hall H, in front of 6,000 people, O’Malley answers, “weird.”
Wright then drops what he calls a ‘bombshell’ announcement: “on August 13th, “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” will be released … in 2D.”
Next up is Anna Kendrick (she plays Stacey Pilgrim), Kieran Culkin (who plays Scott’s awesome roommate, Wallace Wells) and Aubrey Plaza (who plays the the obnoxious Julie Powers) …
Wright asks how disapproving are their characters of Scott Pilgrim in the movie, on a scale of 1-10? Kendrick says 5, Plaza 7, and Culkin says 4, simply because “I like the number 4.”
Time for 4 of the Evil Exes … Jason Schwartzman, Brandon Routh, Satya Babha, and Mae Whitman.
Wright asks them how much they enjoyed beating the crap out of Scott Pilgrim. Routh said he enjoyed it devilishly, and Schwartzman, replete in a vintage Members ONly jacket, answers, “Comic Con-iciously!”
Wright then introduced Simon Pegg and Nick Frost who walked onstage to a massive reaction. Just as they’re about to sit down, Wright interrupts. “sorry, that was a mistake. I should have added ‘Not Appearing in this movie’..”
Pegg and Frost walk off the stage, as quickly as they walked on.
Finally, Wright apologized that actor Chris Evans could not make it to the con as he’s currently filming “Captain America” in London, but he said they “did have an actor who actually auditioned for Captain America…and got down to the last 500.” At that point, Cera came on stage dressed as Captain America. He walks onstage in a Captain America suit!
Wright then throws to a clip of the film, which shows Pilgrim taking down a ton of henchman in Jedi/Ninja style. It ends with him and Jason Schwartzman leaping toward each other, swords drawn, in mid-air.
As for Scott’s two girlfriends, Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Ramona Flowers) and Ellen Wong (who plays Knives Chau) had to “describe your feelings for Scott” to which their reply was “It’s complicated” and the fan-favorite “Scottaholic.”
Wright is now taking questions from the audience..and jokingly warns that anyone asking two or three-part questions “will be shot on sight.”
A young lady with a huge crush on Routh stepped to the mic saying, “I have a question for Superman” which was what it was like for the former Man of Steel to switch from hero to villain and which role he preferred more. “You can’t really choose between Superman and any other character, so definitely Superman,” The actor said while noting that he loved making “Scott Pilgrim” and adding. “Basically you do everything the opposite of Superman, and you get Todd Ingram.”
Asked what drew him to doing an action romance like “Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World” after directing comedies, Wright said it was ” the metaphor of romance and action and how much you would fight for love.” He explained that the tone of “Scott Pilgrim” reminded him of his own series “Spaced” which starts as a show about nerdy 20-somethings and “flowers into something insane and outrageous.”
A fan asked what drew all the actors to the movie, and Schwartzman started to say “We loved the material” before Plaza interrupted in deadpan, saying “I hated it, but the minute they asked me to be in it, I said ‘Fine.'” The actor behind Gideon Graves went on to say that the key to bringing him into the cast was the combo of O’Malley’s story and Wright’s sensibilities.
Wright then spoke briefly about the video game tone he tried to strike in the movie, saying he wanted each evil ex fight to increase in intensity like the levels of a game getting harder. He said that you can hear within the film some Tekken sound effects as well as sound effects from Super Mario, Sonic The Hedgehog and The Legend of Zelda which should heighten the experience for longtime classic gamers.
Cera explained to one fan asking after how he prepared for the role that the cast went through fight training for two months and that running the characters in that time brought the cast into the mindset of the characters. Wright added of the fight choreography team “We literally had Team Jackie Chan on the set” before adding that Cera was called “Mikey the push-up king” in training. Schwartzman credited the director for showing up and helping with the fight work every day, which is a rarity for film directors in action movies.
Asked what their favorite scene in the movie was to film, especially in terms of what made them laugh, Plaza jumped at the question saying, “Most of my scenes were me cursing Michael Cera out, and that was a lot of fun.” Culkin then told a story about how on set he was mentally preparing for the scene in which he needed to make out with another man, but the director helped him by one day just coming up and planting “a very wonderful” kiss on the actor’s lips to help break the ice.
Canada was a frequent topic of conversation with one Toronto native fan asking about the experience of filming in the city and not letting it double for New York or some other major American city. Wright said that at one point, the studio actually asked if they wanted to move part of the production to New York and double for Toronto. He then said it was nice to not have to “pretend it’s deep space or ancient Greece” adding “Now I have drunk a lot of Tim Horton’s coffee.”
Finally, the director announced that he would be taking a select number of fans in attendance who had been slipped “1-Up” Scott buttons to a special screening of the movie that night before leaping off the stage Andy Kaufman-style and leading the charge to the theater up the street. The film will also show twice more the weekend of Comic-Con.