Two years ago at San Diego Comic-Con 2010, Sylvester Stallone made a grand appearance on stage in front of 6000 people with some of his macho cast mates for The Expendables. The Lionsgate panel brought Stallone along with Terry Crews, Steve Austin, Dolph Lundgren and Randy Courture to tell stories that would make any ’80s action fanboy smile from ear to ear, and this year Sly is back.
Joining Sly Stallone [Sly] at Comic-Con 2012 for The Expendables 2 are returnees Terry Crews [TC], Randy Couture [RC]and Dolph Lundgren [DL] along with headliners Jean Claude Van Damme [JCVD], and Arnold Schwarzenegger [Arnold]. Join Screen Rant for a liveblog at one of the most action-packed films (and panels) of this year’s big event.
Van Damme was mocked two years ago for not accepting Stallone’s offer to join the original film’s cast, as was Chuck Norris and Steven Seagal. Norris is also part of the cast for The Expendables 2 although he’s not scheduled to show up at the convention. Could he or co-star Bruce Willis make surprise appearances? (Willis also has another film, Looper, having a panel the following day as part of the Sony Pictures presentation). Could we get an announcement/teasers of The Expendables 3? Could they confirm Antonio Banderas or Steven Seagal for the next flick?
The Expendables 2 presentation is aptly subtitled “Real American Heroes” since this film represents what some fans would argue what G.I. Joe should be. The first film’s Comic-Con panel had Stallone and friends sharing stories of near-death experiences and intense stunt work that included Jason Statham actually standing outside of a real, flying plane to Terry Crews diving out of the way of a fiery explosion. Expect more of that this time around. If you’re attending the convention, you can check out the panel yourself at 4:45 PM Pacific Time in Hall H on Thursday, July 12th. If not, keep it parked right here and for the latest Marvel Studios movie news, brought to you LIVE by Screen Rant.
Welcome to The Expendables 2 liveblog, the most exciting film panel of the first day of Comic-Con 2012.
Opened with clip of every character doing something awesome with a gun or a vehicle.
Geoff Boucher (Hero Complex) on stage to moderate – welcomes Sly to the stage to a standing ovation. “Rocky!”
Next a clip of “Stallone’s career”
Stallone on keeping 80′s action: Let’s try to keep it going, keep the bad-asses around a little longer. Crowd cheers!
“Each generation has to create their own heroes and for us it’s ’80s and ’90s.” Stallong speaks on the difference today on more scientific, more techinical “action” where stars don’t have to spend their lives pumping iron.
Stallone says it’s critical to keep the “M-word” (momentum). “Where’s the backstory? Don’t have time for the backstory.”
Stallone says Expendables 2 surpasses its predecessor in every way. Now it’s time for his crew, the first up is Terry Crews!
And TC did it again! He stood on the table, shouted “what,” then danced his pecs for the crowd.
Next, Sly: “we call him Tall Road, because if you get by him it’s count to cost you a big price.” Randy Couture.
Next up, friend since 1985, Dolph Lundgren. Crowd cheers.
And in case we forgot about him…. a video for Arnold! The clip is literally five minutes of AS killing people with every weapon imaginable, with a few classic one-liners thrown in.
Stallone introducing the next guest: “…one of my fellow brothers in the hard R business…an incredible man… a trye one-of-a-kind movie star, the likes of which we will never see again, my friend, Arnold Schwarzenegger.”
Massive and deafining standing ovation.
AS: “I’m back!” Crowd goes nuts.
AS continues, joking about his competitive past with Sly, comparing kill counts in films, types of kills, most brutal kills, muscles, etc.
He’s all smiles and has a lot of stories to share.
Now AS is joking about how since he’s been away for 8 years, everyone was telling him how to load guns, how to punch but not really hurt people, “how to pull out a knife and kill someone.”
“I wish you can do some of this in politics.”
TC talking about his 7 years in the NFL and how he and his teammates spent time together watching these types of movies from these stars. He explains that these types of action movies were a religion for them, a source of inspiration.
TC jokes “I’m from Flint, Michigan, I should be in jail,” then explains how thankful he is to be in this movie with these people.
AS is now complimenting and telling TC how proud he is to work with him, tells a story of how TC’s first movie was with AS on The 6th Day and that he’s gained so much muscle since.
Now AS and TC are making bromance jokes as TC says he can die happy now, being complimented by Arnold.
Now Dolph’s story about putting Stallone in the hospital is the focus. Hospital thought Stallone was hit by a car. Stallone jokes by telling them “ya, a Volvo.” Crowd laughs.
Stallone is describing the story for The Expendables 2. They’re mercenaries and when they come back from a mission, Stallone’s character is blackmailed by Bruce Willis’ character into doing what they think is a routine mission, but it’s not at all and The Expendables are put into a very strange and horrible place.
Stallone says we’ll get to see a bigger mix of different types of combat and action, “you’re in for a ride.”
Arnold is now asked about being a Dirty Dozen style team-up and he responds by stressing how important and “terrific” it is to work with the right people, Dolph and Randy who bring REAL, legit award-winning fighting history and Terry bringing the muscles.
AS tells us to turn off our recorders and don’t write this down because it’s off the record: “When I came to America 45 years ago, Stallone was my English teacher.” Crowd laughs and they make impressions of each other.
Stallone: “We should have a spelling bee some day, it’d be amazing.” Everyone on panel laughs.
Now AS and Sly are sharing stories of the beginning of their careers, back when Rocky won an Oscar and Arnold won for “Bext Newcomer” and how competitive they were. They also briefly joke about working on The Tomb together.
Terry Crews on this being his dream job: “If I wasn’t on this stage, I’d be out there” (points to crowd). “I think The Expendables 2 is the movie Sly always wanted to make, I mean he literally broke his neck in the first one.”
He also compliments the cast, from Liam Hemsworth to Chuck Norris.
Now it’s time for Q&A and after first question, Arnold interupts to thank fans:
“Thank you for the compliment, it goes the other way. We should be thanking you.”
“Thank you for your loyalty.”
He went on and on, very passionate, very heartfelt.
Now the next guy is dressed up as a viking and Arnold is teasing him, saying he’s Conan, making fun of their muscles. Arnold: “Crush your enemies.”
Fan compliments the panel, asks his question in an Arnold voice and nails the impression. Arnold can barely contain himself.
Next question comes from Hall H regulars, twins who finish each others’ sentences. They ask (funny enough) about the progress of the Twins sequel. Get it? Arnold answers seriously, saying they always pondered the idea of “Triplets” and Ivan Reitman was interested.
Arnold finishes by looking to crowd and shouting “It’s not a tumor.”
Next questioner is a big Arnold fan and AS interupts: “Who is your daddy and what does he do?” Crowd contiues to laugh.
Next questioner is a big Arnold fan and AS interupts: “Who is your daddy and what does he do?”
Question for “toughest guy on the panel.”
Randy talks about the similar expeirence in training, having the mental mindset and focus to prepare to shoot, just like he did for MMA fights.
Next question: “If all five you got into a fight right now, who’d win?”
Stallone jokes about the man with the big hands, the ears and the champion belt: Randy. But he wouldn’t put anything past Arnold.
Next question is asking Stallone and Arnold where their fave movies are of each other.
Stallone jokes Junior then says Terminator 2. Crowd applauds.
Arnold says Rocky and Rambo franchises, compliments Stallone for being incredible and unique in that he has three key action franchises like that.
Now, Arnold is complimenting Sly for being an amazing artist, and that people don’t realize. Sly paints amazingly well and sells for top dollar, gave Arnold one for his birthday two years ago. Everyone sort of laughs out of slight embarassment and AS jokes about not telling the story because of the IRS.
AS and Sly joke about them trying to market bad-ass action but inside, they’re all just painters.
AS to Sly: “You’re very sensitive, very emotional.” Everyone laughs.
Sly and AS are owning the stage, answering a question now about training methods now that they’re older. Sly says he uses his own body weight and tries to keep limber. Arnold says they can do the running, jumping and climbing, but at night they have to put ice on their joints.
Stallone now talking the inspiration for bringing everyone together and he compares to old bands coming back, together to help sell. Stallone returning himself isn’t as interesting because he’s old, but bringing all these guys back together is fascinating and bankable and exciting.
“strength in numbers.”
The panel concludes with more more clip from the film, this one showing JCVD’s crew battling it out against Stallone’s. A lot of people die and the highlight was Bruce Willis and Arnold exchaging each others’ famous oneliners.
Arnold: I’ll be back.
Bruce: No, I’ll be back.
Oh, it’ not over yet. Arnold is coming back on stage…
Comic-Con is presenting the Inkpot award to Arnold for his contributions to pop culture and film. Big applause from the crowd.
Arnold’s now talking about winning 13 body building championships and how he went to find his agent and they said “no way.” His name is hard to pronounce, his body is “let’s face it, over-developed.” They said he’d never be a leading man and Arnold says he’s prove it. “When in Hollywood says no, that means yes.”
Arnold finsihed with an emotional thank you, listing a ton of movies and how they couldn’t happen with his fans. He spoke extremely well and very passionately. His time in politics definitely shaped his public speaking and confidence. The man – and everyone else on The Expendables 2 panel – presented themselves as superstars and it’s very fitting that this film is an all-stars teamup of sorts.
The Expendables 2 is the final movie-specific panel we’re covering on Screen Rant today. Stay tuned into Screen Rant and follow me on Twitter @rob_keyes for a pile of TV and movie stuff tomorrow. Tomorrow we have Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Resident Evil, Looper, Elysium, Total Recall and much, much more!
The Expendables 2 is directed by Simon West and stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, Chuck Norris, Dolph Lundgren, Jason Statham, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Jet Li, Liam Hemsworth, Randy Couture, Scott Adkins, Sylvester Stallone and Terry Crews.
The Expendables 2 opens in theaters August 17, 2012.
Keep an eye on the Screen Rant Comic-Con 2012 page for all the convention news.
Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.