Thursday, August 19, 2010

The four days of Celebration V

Photos from the entire Celebration V here.

So I know I didn't talk much about what went on Wednesday, but I was dead tired. In fact, I was dead tired every night of the con. So now I will catch you up on Wednesday afternoon and the four days of Celebration V.

When I got to the droid room Wednesday I found a mad house of droids, sets, and builders. When I asked where I should setup my droid I got "anywhere." OK. But I just knew once I did setup my droid, which has no wheels and the feet come off when you move it, I'd have to move him some where else later....and I was right. In the end we ended up moving him 3 times before finding a good place. I also got my droid room banners and they are currently setup in the droid room.

Thursday I decided to try walking to the convention center instead of waiting for the hotel's shuttle bus. Care to put money on what I'll be doing differently from now on? Not only was it hot outside, but I ended up walking to the wrong building. The OCCC is divided into two buildings: the north/south building and the west building. Celebration V is in the West building. I walked to the other one. Luckily there were shuttle buses there to take people parking there to the other building. Once I got to the droid room, I found out I had missed seeing Anthony Daniels, other wise known as C-3PO. Darn it.
After serving my shift in the room, I went to the Expedition Hall to explore the vendors and attractions. Of note was a life-size TIE Interceptor, several life-size dioramas for photo ops, the regular Jedi Training show for small children to participate it, a game of laser tag against Storm Troopers, the R2 Builder's Droid Races (Friday - Sunday), and the Celebration Store. After wandering around I went to the Celebration Store and bought a Commemorative Guide and a glass mug (pictured below).
Photobucket Photobucket
Got Milk?

Later I visited the 501st Legion room, the Rebel Legion room, the Clone Wars Theater (which oddly enough presented every Cartoon Network show BUT The Clone Wars), and the Fan Film Theater (which did live up to its name).
Later, I returned the droid room for my second shift of the day to closing. Before anyone left, an announcement was made to be back first thing in the morning because "he" was coming. Hmm. I wonder who "he" could be? I then went to the fan film awards to see who won what. However, I was surprised to discover that the award show ended after the shuttle buses stop for the night. So of course, I had to walk all the way back to the Hotel. Only a 15-20 minute walk, but it was dark, hot, and I was only guessing where I had to go. Luckily I found my way with no problem.

Friday I used the shuttle bus and arrived at the room around 8am (too early for me). A half-hour later "he" arrived....Jedi Master George Lucas himself. This makes the second time he has visited our display (1st at C3). He went around the room, took special note of a few droids he really liked, and left. If that wasn't enough, a short time later Ben Burtt arrived to tour our room. For the un-initiated, Ben Burtt was the original sound designer for Star Wars and is responsible for creating R2-D2's voice. He spent some time talking with us about designing R2's voice and other related things.
After I got out of the room, I went to get in line to see the Mark Hamill interview, but found a line wrapping the entire fourth floor twice. So instead, I went to the Exhibition Hall and bought a book, The Fate of the Jedi: Allies. I've been waiting for this book. The booth I bought it at told me the authors of the Fate of the Jedi series would be signing autographs later that day, so I wandered around for a short while then returned to get my book signed. With that done, I then got in line for a Clone Wars panel, hoping to see some sneak peeks of season 3. No footage was shown at this panel, but I did here some great stories from the supervising director, Dave Filoni. He talked about what he thought the series was going to be like, a group of travelers going from one adventure to the next during the clone wars with few appearances by main movie characters. But he learns very quickly that GL has a different "point of view." Gl said in their first meeting that Anakin was going to have a padawan, to which Dave replied, "but George, Anakin doesn't have a padawan" (considering episode 3). GL looks at him and then says, "so Anakin is going to have a padawan...." Dave Filoni also has a hard time resisting children's questions, even if he can't answer the question, which we saw first hand. He swears parents send their kinds to him with these spoiler questions on purpose.
After the panel, I had to return to the droid room, after which I returned to the Hotel and crashed.

Saturday, same routine in the morning. After lunch, I searched for a vendor who has original release reprint movie posters for ESB (Empire Strikes Back), but only found miniature ones. In fact, I found only two or three vendors with movie posters and their selection was limited. Could be I waited too long and they were simply sold out of the poster I was looking for. Oh well. So instead I bought two R2-D2 action figures (one from the 1990's and one in the most recent packaging) and a star wars blueprints book: rebel edition.
Then I went and got in line for the Clone Wars season 3 panel. That was awesome! I got to see a few clips from the upcoming season and a mega trailer for it. Dave Filoni took more questions and of course another little kid asked a spoiler question. It was very funny watching Dave squirm wanting to answer but not being able to.
Later, it was back to the droid room and then back to Hotel to crash.

Sunday I spent the whole day in the droid room. At 5pm we closed the room for the last time. Our event leader gave a speech thanking all of us for our help and support. Special thanks went out to those who made special contributions such as set pieces or organizing certain displays, etc.. Then the tear down began. I boxed up R6-C9 again, loaded him into the rental car, and after helping tear down and saying good byes, I went back to the Hotel to crash for the rest of the day.

Early Monday morning I packed up everything, checked out of the Hotel, and hit the road back home. Tuesday morning same thing. Got home about 2pm that afternoon. Great to be back.

Man, I had a great time. I met a lot of cool people, saw some cool stuff, and was just geeking out the whole time. Can't wait for Celebration VI.

So what next? A vacation from droid building. I've put quite a bit of money and time into him the past few months, so I'm taking a break. But don't worry, it won't be for long. Just a couple of months maybe.


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

To C5 or Bust - day 2 cont.


I think the photo says it all. This is one of our "photo op" sets. And that's me with a R2-D2 and C-3PO replica.
I got to the convention center around 1pm. By this time the droid room was full and people and droids. I took a lot more pictures than just the one which you can see by clicking here. I also took some video, but will wait until after I've returned home to mess with editing and uploading it.
Tomorrow is the official start of the convention and I'll be manning the droid room for the first 1.5 hours and last 1.5 hours.


P.S. The Hotel in Orlando has the same pillows as the last Hotel did. Bummer.

To C5 or Bust - day 2

I am not a morning person. Got up at 4am and am now about ready to hit the road again. I didn't get very good sleep on account that the pillows at this hotel are those square shaped ones with about as much fluff as a piece of paper. Haven't they ever seen normal pillows?

Anyway, today's the day I get to meet in person all the droid building experts I've been reading about and getting all kinds of advice from.

Next postings from Orlando.


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

To C5 or Bust - day 1 cont.

Made it to Georgia in one piece. During the eight hour drive I went through two, count 'em, two rain storms. Couldn't see the car in front of me the rain was so heavy. Luckily they only lasted about ten minutes.

To beat Atlanta morning rush hour, I'll hit again the road again at about 4 or 5 in the morning. Next time I post here, I'll be in Orlando geeking out at all the R2-D2's.

Until then,


To C5 or Bust - day 1

Well it's after 9am here. Car's packed and ready to go. I'll make an update when I get to the hotel. See you at Celebration V.