Comic-Con 2014: Fox Panel! HITMAN! BOOK OF LIFE! MAZE RUNNER!

– by L-R

Once again, we have the fantastic, the indomitable, the flying-fingered Jeri Jacqui! on the transcripts!

Some good stuff from yesterday. Since I was on the Maze Runner set (report here), I've read the book and have been itching to see what Wes Ball made of it. They showed it to some fans earlier in the week and it got some good twitter buzz.

Let's check out what Fox offered yesterday at SDCC!


Wes Ball (director)

James Dashner (author)

Will Poulter - Gally

Kaya Scodelario - Teresa

Dylan O’Brien - Thomas


Ralph Garman  (Mod): Please welcome director Wes Ball, author James Dashner, Will Poulter, Kaya Scodelario and Dylan O’Brien. Dylan, as Thomas, an actor tends to want to use his environment etc. and you have none of those advantages with this character.

Dylan: Yes, there isn’t that much to go off of. Taking it in one step at a time and no recollection of a previous life, it’s easy in a way, its sort of theme.

Mod: Wes, there is a little bit of a leap from a short film to a film at this scale.

Wes: I got a little attention of the short. They gave me the book to read and asked me what I would do with it. I fell in love with the core concept and the idea with a group of boys trapped in this world for a period of years having to create their own little society. It was a cool idea like LORD OF THE FLYS. The menacing maze surrounding this place lent itself to some tension, suspense and fun situations. It was a chance to do something cool with adventure. We get to do something with a little more balls to it and it was a lot of fun.

Mod: You had a screening of the film and the reaction was phenomenal. James, what’s that like?

James: It’s indescribably and I get emotional. I saw a final version of the film recently and I was shaking and balling. They really captured my vision, Wes and this beautiful cast. They took the vision and turned it into this magnificent film and I can’t wait for you all to see it.

Mod: Will, your character is at cross-purposes, tell us about your character.

Will: It was an interesting challenge to me. It was a lot of fun. He’s the closest thing to a villain in the story. What we tried to do was create a character who is rational and empathetic even if you didn’t agree with it. I respected the kid and appreciate his point of view. The main thing about him is that he’s a bit of a coward and willing to be confined to The Glade and is fearful of the outside world. Thomas seems to have this guttural urge to escape so we are polar opposites. That’s why we almost come to blows.

Mod: Kaya, let’s talk about being the only female at The Glade.

Kaya: My experience was wonderful and I like the fun you can have around boys because they kind of talk crap a lot. We all bonded straight away and I feel so comfortable with them and it’s brotherly. They look after me and give me a tough time as well. She tries to prove herself throughout the film.

Wes: There is a mysterious connection that will be explored further. Kaya became one of the boys.

Q&A: What was the most fun?

Dylan: The most fun was the wrestling scene with Will. We rehearsed for a week before production and it is such a scene that reminds me of movies that I loved as a kid. It is the first glimpse of Thomas and how strong he is. It’s cool and fun and a great scene.

Will: It was one of my favorites as well. I like the scenes where we square off.

Kaya: What I enjoyed the most is when Dylan and I spent the day up in a tree. It was a gorgeous tree house built for the film and it swung in the wind. It was the first day where we really spent time together as actors. For me it was a beautiful day of work spending one and one seeing the magic he makes.

James: My favorite scene was the one I was in.

Q&A: How is it different playing in the series SKINS and your new character in THE MAZE RUNNER?

Kaya: I was fourteen when I started playing Effie. I went through a lot and she was a very deep character and important to me. With this it was fun because I could be completely angry and hungry and I loved that about this character. She arrived and is not trying to make friends with anyone. I admire that about her and I haven’t had that before with a character. She made me feel a bit braver. I’m glad I got to play both of these roles.

Q&A: What were the challenges for you Wes between the book and movie?

Wes: Momentum was the important thing in the movie. I’m not going to give away any spoilers.

James: you’d think I’d be the harshest critic but every change that was made perfect sense. You guys are going to love it.

Q&A: How do you think Thomas will hold up in a general crowd in the film?

Dylan: I don’t know if Thomas would beat Katniss in a fight. He’d run away and dodge it. Its funny hearing that and I forget that there are strong female roles and I think that’s great. It’s great that I get to play a strong male role. I love how he gets a fresh start and a new chance to discover things inside him like courage, strength and a sense of leadership. It’s great to follow his journey and utter defiance throughout the film and not willing to go along with everything or let his fear hold him back. He’d rather die than spend the rest of his life in the glade. It’s a blessing to play and it’s cool and I’m a big fan of that kind of ordinary teenager in extraordinary circumstances.

Mod: Besides the maze, what terrifies me are the Grievers, how did you bring to the screen?

Wes: Grievers are guard dogs of the maze and terrorize the kids as they try to escape the maze. They are very cool. I was looking through JURASSIC PARK etc. and designing it was a lot of fun. Method brought it to life. I took the basic ideas of James’ book  with a Frankenstein biomechanical creature and the audience won’t get a truly good look at them. Since I’m here with friends so we cut together one particular scene where Thomas has an encounter with one of these guys, lets take a look.

(shows trailer)

Mod: In the book the characters go there names from people in history. You said you got the name Frypan and who would name their child that?

James: Frypan’s real name is Siggy and you can imagine who he was named after.

Q&A: What was the most difficult scene you film?

Dylan: Someone’s death in the film. (Spoiler alert, he does say who)

Mod: Now we know there is more in the film and there are two more. Are there plans for filming the next two books?

Wes: What’s very interesting to the book is that it has a ballsy ending and we think it’s a cool movie to tell in a saga. We think we can do something special in the next with the family you learn to love in this first movie. We are excited to think we can be able to make this thing into a true saga and open the story with more suspense and scares with a character story. The sequel is in a completely different setting. We might be gearing up to shoot it in the fall or this winter. It could be something truly spectacular. The world we are going to wind up in is here (shows a visual) in THE SCORCH TRIALS. We don’t answer everything in the movie and we hope to explore it with really fun stuff.

Mod:  Thanks guys for showing up and showing us the great footage.




Channing Tatum

Jorge Gutierrez

Guillermo Del Torro

Christina Applegate

Ron Perlman


Mod: Lets meet Jorge Gutierrez, director, the producer of the film Guillermo Del Toro, the voice of Mary Beth is Christina Applegate, also Ron Perlman and the voice of Joaquin is Channing Tatum. THE BOOK OF LIFE is hilarious and touching and bizarre and wild and Jorge, tell me about your vision.

Jorge: The original inspiration was my grandfather when I was a kid and gave me the words “never let the truth get in the way of a good story”. It kind of became what this movie is about. It’s a recipe book of all the tales I’ve heard and serving it now to the world.

Mod: Guillermo, welcome back to Hall H.

Guillermo: I will not curse. Okay a little, okay I will.

Mod: How did you get in involved?

Guillermo: One day Jorge showed up at my house with tequila and a pitch for the movie. This is about seven years ago. I started telling Jorge about changes and we had great chemistry. Jorge was sweating and I thought he was going to have a heart attack. What I saw was such a beautiful set of images and I direct movies when I feel they need me. So I wanted to protect this baby and keep it as beautiful and pure as we can make it. It’s a gorgeous and magical film.

Mod: I’m going to get so stoned before I see this movie. Jorge I liked that you used contemporary music, how did you come up with that.

Jorge: I grew up in Tijuana and I used the songs as part of the story of my life. The bands jumped on board and let me use there music.

Mod: I think there is someone here that wants to share a song with you. (Biz Markie “Just a Friend” comes out to sing the song)  It’s a party now up here in Hall H. Lets talk about your character Ron.


Ron: He’s just misunderstood and he likes snakes. He’s been around for thousands of years. He’s larger than life and he’s use to wheeling and dealing and he’s awfully good at it. His counterpart and he love each other but after a few thousand years there idea of spicing things up is expansive. He was fun to play and I had a ball.

Mod:  Channing, was this your first animation?

Chan: I did Superman Lego and it was an hour of me and Jonah making fun of each other.

Mod: Did they come to you with the role?

Chan: Jorge came to me with it. I have obvious Mexican ancestry (laughing) so I put my own twist on it.

Mod: Talking about your role Christina.

Chris: I am the story telling and Mary Beth is a tour guide and runs into naughty kids and shows them the Book Of Life, but there is a twist.

Q&A: What made you Guillermo jump on this project specifically?

Del Toro: I think that is very important first of all to do things that call you and with a need to protect. I also like a sense of fun, creation and life. Jorge is like my twin brother that came in the same package. I truly felt a huge kinship and the visuals and fairy tale like story and profound roots in our culture – all that I felt privileged to be part of it. Each movie you do presents to the audience another side of one’s personality. I feel everything I get involved with I feel like I have a kinship. There is a huge chunk of heart.

Mod: The Look of the film looks like you borrowed form the Latino culture.

Jorge: Yes, it’s near and dear to my heart and I got married on the Day of the Dead and I really truly love the look of the movie. Day of the Dead and the iconography is everywhere.

Q&A: You’re known for your good looks Channing, what is it about your voice that drew you into the movie?

Channing: Thanks, they told me I was going to be able to have an amazing mustache in this movie. It feels very supple and lush. The truth of it is that I haven’t gotten to play in this world before and to work with these artists is like working with a net in that you can’t do anything wrong. It’s called animation for a reason and to bring it heart.

Guillermo: He has the physical part but an adorable vulnerability with a humanity and I admire him also.

Christina: I’m offended that you didn’t pose that same question to me.

Guillermo: Oh we should.

Mod: Thanks everyone for coming and BOOK OF LIFE comes out this fall!




Hannah Ware

Zachary Quinto


Mod: Welcome guys. This film looks exciting and terrifying and action filled. Hannah, lets talk about her relationship with HITMAN in the film.

Hannah: I’ll talk as much as I can. Forty-seven seeks Katia out and she presents him with his biggest challenges.

Mod: John Smith is your character Zachary.

Zachary: Yes, very complicated.

Mod: I’m guessing you are an equal of Agent 47 if not his better.

Zachary: That’s the first we’ve seen in that clip and see it put together is epic. It is all really dynamic and exciting. Rupert is incredible in the movie and it’s dynamic. There is a relationship between Katia and John that is pretty dynamic I would say.

Mod:  Is this your first action adventure?

Hannah: Yes, it is.

Mod: What is it like to do this so high octane?

Hannah: The technical aspects is different from shooting a television drama. I was excited to do that and I enjoyed doing that. The physicality lent itself to our respective journey. Singapore and Berlin can’t be more different and they really helped us propel ourselves into what we were doing and story we were telling.

Mod: What was it about this character Zachary to take on this role?

Zach: I take on roles that have more than meets the eye. I think what makes characters interesting and John Smith was written primary among his psychological composition. On top of that and spend two months there and use these places running around and using the architecture and it’s remarkable. That’s another big draw for me to get involved and we just had a good time. It was a challenge but fulfilling.

Q&A: Zachary, you have a warm demeanor about you but often playing cold characters, why is that?

Zachary: I feel like part of what draws me to characters is finding a way to love them. To play them and try to find something that people can love about them. It’s hard to say like in American Horror Story figuring out how you can love that character. You have to find the compassion and I don’t feel evil.

Mod: The movie captures the spirit of the game.

Zachary: Fans of the game, it’s a great launching off point and we built on this film world. I’m not a gamer by nature; I graduated with the original Nintendo system. I knew the game existed.

Hannah: My guy friends they were really impressed that I was involve din this. They said it was one of the most exciting games out there. I tried to play but I wasn’t very good.

Q&A: It seems like your career is so diversified, are you searching for different roles to not get locked in?

Zachary: Yes, diversity is key. What I loved about doing this movie is that this film has an element that is heightened elements and the story relationships was taking other qualities and applying it. I want to do as much different stuff as possible. I want to always move beyond and keep a career interesting. I can’t wait to show this film to you all.

Mod: Thanks everyone for joining us.









Mod: Welcome guys. I saw the film and I laughed my ass off. This movie has a lot of heart too. It’s about a friendship and as friends do you are there for each other. Jake Johnson gave us a message for fans.

Damon: He told me he made this and made it just to make us laugh.

Mod: I’m assuming you were busting up a lot in this film.

Damon: One of the reasons I wanted to do this is because Mike was going to do it. I wanted Rob to do it and Keegan and Nina. I t was great to be with so many funny people with really great energy and make the best thing they could.

Mod: Luke Greenfield, (the director) is a very funny guy and I heard this was based on a true story.

Damon: Yes, that’s what started this movie, it was genius and along with his co write Nicky Thomas who dressed up like cops they got arrested and then they got let out. If we tried to do the same thing he did they would put us under the jail.

(show trailer)

Nina: As you can see it’s a serious drama.

Mod: They are telling me we are out of time. Tell us one funny story.

Damon: There was a scene in the hardware store where the guy is on my face. In the actual movie he doesn’t have any underwear on. He tries to get away but slides up my face.

Rob: The reason he slides is because me and Jake are pulling him up.

Nina: It’s hard to remember. Lets be real it’s a boys movie. I wasn’t there for as much of it. There was a second that went buy where they weren’t doing something stupid.

Mod: We love your character.

Keegan: He is a Dominican drug dealer working on an accent (He talks with an accent confusing everyone) Can’t you understand what I’m saying to you. I’m talking about me and talking about you.

Damon: Now that I broke it down I get you.

Keegan: We did a fifteen minute take and ten minutes of it they can’t understand me. There is a scene where I’m strapped to an ironing board wrapped in cellophane and the guys are trying to water board me.

Damon: He was shaking and we were having fun. I would have yelled cut.

Keegan: I couldn’t believe this was happening to me. That was hilarious!

Mod: Rob, your character is the hero of the film.

Rob: It’s the first straight role I’ve played. He’s a straight guy and it appealed to me. Working with my friends is the number one reason to do the movie. Also to play an honest character was amazing.

Mod: Thanks everyone for joining us!












Mark Millar (Mod:) We were here for KICK ASS several years ago in Hall H with director Matthew Vaughn. He once again has something to bring to you but first a message from Matt and a special guest. (play a short message with Mark Hamill). Now, I want you to meet all those responsible for this film. Dave Gibbons, Jane Goldman, Sophie Cookson, Colin Firth, Sofia Boutella, and Samuel L. Jackson. Colin, can you about your character?

Colin: I play this young man’s mentor and I tool so much inspiration from this boy and he taught him an immense amount about how to conduct myself in a film.

Mod: Care to introduce your costar?

Colin: He won’t need an introduction after this film comes out here is Taron Egerton.


Q&A: You have been in different movies Samuel, what drew you to this movie?

Sam: I’ve been watching James Bond movies and I always wanted to be in one. I wanted to be Bond and get the gadgets and get the girl but an opportunity presented itself to be in one like it. I jumped at it to be a villain and that’s how I chose it.

Colin: I have the pin strips and the umbrella but it’s all the various manifestations of the spy. Steve is very much one of them and so is George Smiley.

Jane: It’s almost an iconic figure, the British gentleman spy.

Mod: I think Dave and Jane are a great team making this film. The movie is out in October.




Interviews, Film 20th Century Fox, Comic-Con 2014, Maze Runner, Book of Life, Hitman: Agent 47, SDCC 2014