By: John M Jerva
Well it’s Sunday at 6:16 in the evening and the sun has set on another New York Comic. This was my third one to attend and even though I didn’t attend as many panels this year, it was still just as exciting and I still got to me some pretty famouspeople once again. From the legendary Michale Biehn of Terminator and Aliens to martial arts master Taimak from the cult classic The Last Dragon, I got to hang out with some pretty rad celebrities. Not to mention seeing the iconic Billy Dee Williams from Star Wars, this Con had just as much excitement as the others.
Strolling the floor of the Con was hectic as usual and there was so much to take in from high priced collectibles to comic books themselves, there was no shortage of cool shit to look at. Of course, all of it was out of my price range but what else is new. I had to settle to take pictures of the coolest of the cool. From Marvel to DC to Star Wars, there was something for everyone.
In terms of the panels, Thursay saw us attending the 20th Century Fox panel which included exclusive looks at The King’s Man and a newer, lesser known film called Free Guy. I’m not gonna lie, I didn’t even know anything about the latter but when I looked it up on the IMDb, I saw that it was a film starring Ryan Reynolds himself and low and behold, the man of the hour showed up for the panel which made the trip memorable right then and there. To be in the same room as Reynolds and only six rows back was a treat to say the least and he was just as funny and charming as ever. That will definitely be one of my most wonderful memories from this year or any year.
I was also excited to see Djimon Hounsou too, who was there for The King’s Man and I have always been a fan of his from other films like Never Back Down, Blood Diamond and Special Forces. Hounsou was great to listen to as he talked about doing the fight sequences for the film and mentioning how everyday brought more challenges physically for the actor. It’s always surreal to see these stars live and that will never change.
Another highlight for me was attending the panel with the original Pink Power Ranger herself, Amy Jo Johnson, who spent an hour talking to us about her experiences on the show as well as all the other accomplishments she has done since like turning her attentions to directing films. Johnson was delightful to listen to and was charming and gracious to her fans.
Friday was jammed packed with more exclusive goodies like seeing the lengendary Billy Dee Williams who, of course played Lando Calrission in the original Star Wars films. Williams, who is now 82 looked just as daper as always and spun some truly priceless stories about his life and career in the industry. It was an experience I will never forget as I was in the second row for that one and Billy Dee live is truly unforgettable.
Next saw the panel for HBO’s new series Watchmen which is based on the epic and iconic DC graphic novel and the stars in attendance for that one included Jeremy Irons, Louis Gossett, Jr. and Regina King. We were first treated to an exclusive screening of the premiere episode that won’t debut until the 20th and while not a huge fan of the graphic novel, I did enjoy Zack Snyder’s film adaptation and the series looks fantastic and I’m officially hooked. After the screening, the cast spoke to us about the show and gave us some in depth stories about getting involved and making it.
Saturday saw us only going to one panel which was the cast reunion for the 20th Anniversary of the hit series Angel which saw stars Charisma Carpenter, Alexis Denisof, J. August Richards, Amy Acker and James Marsters take the stage at the Hammerstein Ballroom to give the fans an exciting insight into being a part of the show. Even though David Boreanaz couldn’t be there due to his commitment to filming his new series SEAL Team, it was still epic to see the rest of the cast live as I was in the front row for that one after having won a lottery. I actually did get to see Boreanaz last year when he came to NYCC and I even got to ask him a question so I was OK with him not being there.
Sunday was panel free for us but we did get the chance to walk the floor one more time and the day started off with a bang as I got a chance to meet one of my favorite actors of all time in Michael Biehn who was of course Kyle Reese in the original TERMINATOR and Colonial Marine Corporal Dwayne Hick in Aliens. Not only did I get to take a photo with him and get an autographed picture, I also go to talk to the man for a few minutes and he was the nicest and most gracious man one could ever meet.
I was able to tell him that I was a super fan and loved more than just those two classic films he was in. I told him that I loved his military action film Dead Men Can’t Dance and funny enough, Michael told me that he considered that film in the bottom five of his films. He did say that he had fond memories of it and even met his wife while making it. One funny anecdote he told me that he was drunk a lot of the time while filming it and he would take shots between takes. Priceless stuff to say the least. He did mention that his co-star Adrian Paul from the Highlander TV series was a pleasure to work with and that he had nothing but respect for him. I also told him that I loved the fight between the two of them in that film and he said that was a high point of the film for him too. If he was drunk during the filming of it, he sure as Hell did a great job 🙂 What a professional!
He also talked to me about another little B action film he did that I loved called Double Edge (AKA American Dragons) which was a straight to video actioner. He told me that he did like that one and that his co-star Joong-Hoon Park was great to work with and he loved how the film turned out. He said that some of the lesser known films like that one gave him some of the greatest memories.
The best part of our talk was when he said that Kyle Reese was the best heroic role he had ever done while Aliens was the best film he had ever worked on and his character of Johnny Ringo from Tombstone was the best villain he had ever played. He then took a picture with me and signed a picture of himself as Hicks and wrote his iconic line of “Stay Frosty” on it to me which I’ll never forget.
The 2019 NYCC ended on another high note as I met legendary martial artist and Last Dragon star Taimak. He was there to promote the 35th anniversary of the film and not only did I get to take my picture with him as well, I also got an autographed picture and a personalized Blu-Ray copy of the film. He signed it “John, Keep Glowing…Bruce Leroy.” Not to shabby to say the least.
I have to say that each and every year, there is something always special about this event and like I said, even though I didn’t attend as many panels, meeting some of my favorite celebrities made up for it. I just hope that I will be able to attend next year for a fourth year in a row and who knows what next year might bring. I am a fanboy at heart and that is one of the reasons I do my website. I don’t get paid to do it. I do it because I love it. Maybe one day, I’ll be able to do it for a living as well. One can always dream. I had a great childhood growing up and it shaped me into who I am. From movies to TV to comic books, I love it all. Action-Flix Approved as always! Until next time New York…Stay Frosty!
About The Author: John M Jerva is the owner and editor-in-chief of Action-Flix.com and is a DIE HARD fan of everyhting Action! From the glorious past to the thrilling future, John lives and breathes action!