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Documenting Comic-Con

A New Book And A Pair Of Films Look To Pop Culture Convention

Above: Esther Pearl Watson shows off her comic "Unlovable" in Neil Kendrick's upcoming documentary "Comics Are Everywhere."

Aired 7/2/12 on KPBS Midday Edition.

GUESTS:

Rob Salkowitz, author of "Comic-Con and the Business of Pop Culture"

Neil Kendricks, filmmaker of the documentary-in-progress, "Comics Are Everywhere"

Transcript

Comic-Con is the largest pop culture convention in North America and it starts in just over a week at the San Diego Convention Center. It's come a long way from the few hundred comic book, sci-fi, and film fans that gathered in the basement of the U.S. Grant Hotel in 1970. It now attracts more than 125,000 attendees, offers hundreds of hours of programming, and has an estimated economic impact of $180 million. In 2010, Morgan Spurlock shot a feature documentary, "Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope," at the convention in 2010 that will be available on DVD at Comic-Con.

There are others who have documented Comic-Con. Rob Salkowitz has just written a book called "Comic-Con and the Business of Pop Culture," and Neil Kendrick is a San Diego filmmaker in the midst of making his documentary "Comics Are Everywhere." Kendricks' documentary takes a very different approach from that of Spurlock's film. Instead of focusing on fans and attendees, Kendricks focuses on the comic book artists, both established and new talent. You can view a teaser trailer for Kendricks' work in progress here.

Here is a teaser trailer for Rob Salkowitz's book, which looks at the various scenarios facing both Comic-Con and the comics industry as new forms of distribution come into play.

Salkowitz also had a comic book style press release for his book.

The clever press release for the new book "Comic-Con and the Business of Pop Culture."

McGraw-Hill

Above: The clever press release for the new book "Comic-Con and the Business of Pop Culture."

Comic-Con starts July 11 with preview night and continues through July 15 at the San Diego Convention Center. The event is already sold out.

Rob Salkowitz will be at a book signing on Monday July 9 at Barnes and Noble in Mira Mesa. He will also be moderating two panels at Comic-Con, and will be doing a reading at Trickster on Saturday July 14.

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