By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood July 10, 2009 at 5:59AM
Last year, I remember a few diehard fanboys mocking me when I flagged Twilight as a big deal at Comic-Con. The power of Twilight fans became clear as thousands of girls screamed their lungs out for emerging star Rob Pattinson. Helping to avert certain traffic gridlock, Comic-Con organizers pushed apart back-to-back Thursday panels for Twilight: New Moon and James Cameron's Avatar, by far the most anticipated two panels of the Con. Many were concerned that the threatened tsunami of fans surging toward Hall H Thursday morning (many of them female, in this very male-dominated universe) would make it tough to also cover Disney's 11 AM 3-D panel (Zemeckis's A Christmas Carol, Burton's Alice in Wonderland) and James Cameron's Avatar on the same day. Now New Moon is at 1:45 pm and Avatar is at 3:00 pm. Covering media may have a tough time getting into New Moon without some kind of press pass.
As THR covers how the studio marketers are harnessing the rising power of the online fansites--many of whom will participate in Comic-Con's annual Masters of the Web panel on Thursday at 2 PM--The Wrap examines the countering impact of Twitter on movie openings. As the studios try to use Twitter to disseminate information, word-of-mouth is taking on a whole new meaning in the Twitter universe. The Wrap also posts a handy short-form entertainment sked (the full Comic-Con schedule is packed with cool but not movie-centric graphics and comics panels). Here's Marvel's collection of panels, including Hall H's intro to Iron Man 2.
HitFix is also tracking Comic-Con. Stay tuned. I'm covering. I'm looking forward to seeing Hayao Miyazaki and Pixar's John Lasseter for one of my fave movies of the year so far, Ponyo, and seeing Terry Gilliam again, who is showing some footage but not the entire Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassas, starring Heath Ledger, who made the cover of Vanity Fair this month, a must-read. And for the first time ever, New Zealander Peter Jackson is appearing at the Con in person, to introduce District 9.