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Comic-Con Wrap: from 'Walking Dead' Zombie-Proof Car and 'Twilight' Finale to Marvel Panel; Costume Photo Gallery

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood July 27, 2012 at 4:24PM

Comic-Con is great fun if you don't have to be in Hall H. I'd skip it and watch the panels on YouTube if I didn't want to see the early footage. The Hall H security was so tight this year that even the studio PR execs were complaining about trying to get their people in. I bargained for passes for each individual studio panel..
Jamie Foxx and Christoph Waltz of 'Django Unchained'
Jamie Foxx and Christoph Waltz of 'Django Unchained'

On the roof of the Hotel Solamere, we hung out with Hitfix's Gregory Ellwood and Kris Tapley, Baddass Digest's Devin Faraci, Warners online PR exec Michael Tritter and two Erins, Popular Mechanics' McCarthy and Variety's Maxwell. At the Lionsgate/Summit "Twilight" poolside fete at the Hard Rock Hotel, Summit chiefs Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger, now running Lionsgate's motion picture division, admit they are applying the same approach to "The Hunger Games" franchise as they did the "Twilight" sequels: don't waste any time. In fact, as Francis Lawrence preps "Catching Fire," their production chief Eric Feig and producer Nina Jacobson are already looking for the next Bill Condon to direct the last two "Mockingjay" films.

Thursday I hit the last Comic-Con "Twilight" press conference and panel, as the team expressed their sadness at saying good-bye to making the films, after four years, and their off-screen family. On the last week of shooting, "I was sad not to be able to hang out with these people," said Stephenie Meyer. "This is the last question, the last press conference," added a smiling Rob Pattinson, who at that point seemed very much in love with costar Stewart. In the Hall, director Bill Condon sent a video message from London, where's he's scoring the film. Taking up where the last film left off, he opted to show the first seven minutes, which starts with Bella Swan opening vampire eyes. (See full coverage here.)

So who came out ahead at Comic-Con 2012? Arguably the indies, including Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained" and little Focus Laika stop-motion feature "ParaNorman" got the biggest boosts in awareness, as did Open Road's "Hit and Run" and "End of Watch." And new web series reached out to fans, from Bryan Singer's "H+" to Tom Hanks' Yahoo animated sci-fi series "Electric City."  So did Movies on Demand, which tried to brand itself with an MOD lounge as The Cable MOD destination.

This article is related to: Comic-Con, Twilight, Lord of the Rings/Hobbit, Frankenweenie, Tim Burton

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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.