It's the most wonderful time of the year! This week, from Thursday, July 20th to Sunday, July 23rd is San Diego Comic-Con, the biggest fan event in the entire world. Over 100,000 have traveled to the San Diego Convention Center for cosplay, exclusives and - hopefully - new footage of the most anticipated blockbusters, but if you're stuck at home elsewhere in the world that doesn't mean you can't get the SDCC experience.
Although the convention does have an air of exclusivity, it's incredibly easy to get involved wherever you are and keep up to date on all the latest developments. There's a lot going on over the weekend, but the absolute highlight has to be the panels where the biggest stars in the world provide a sneak peek at what they've been working on. Actually seeing these panels isn't as easy as it sounds, so here's a rundown of everything you need to know.
Watching Hall H Panels
First the bad news: Hall H panels don't stream live. Unlike comparable events such as Star Wars Celebration, SDCC wants to maintain the exclusivity of Hall H and so have been rather open about their plans to not do this anytime in the near future. If you want to keep up with all the developments from the biggest panels - Fox, Marvel, DC, Netflix, The CW and more are all in here - as they happen, then you'll need to keep an eye on Twitter and Screen Rant in particular for updates.
However, for those with a little patience, the panels do usually wind up on the internet not long after they happen.
Hall H Panel Coverage
Here's a rundown of Screen Rant's major panel coverage so far:
New Trailers And Footage
Of course, along with hearing from the various creatives behind the film/TV/game/comic at hand, a big part of the panels are the new footage and images. Most ancillary media is made available online and for many movies the trailers make it out too. However, historically long-lead concept teasers and unconventional footage are only shown in the security-heavy hall - think surprise announcements or a rough cut of a movie more than a year away. This has shifted in the past few years when major first look footage - specifically that of Suicide Squad in 2015 and Justice League in 2016 - has leaked online, forcing Warner Bros. hand and making most studios start releasing everything. The only exception is Marvel, who have a history of not sharing things. Whether they'll change that for Avengers: Infinity War is unclear, although we're sure to get new images regardless.
To know when to expect these trailers to drop, check out this list of the best, most important panels you need to see.
Watching Other, Smaller Panels
While Hall H is certainly the place to be for any headliner, it's just the tip of the SDCC panel iceberg. There are over 20 other panel locations in action over the weekend, with more discussion than anybody could possibly hope to digest. As these are smaller, they typically don't have the interest to be streamed live , but many of the mid-range ones do eventually make their way online pretty soon after they've taken place.
Last year, Comic-Con HQ was launched, a year-round network that aimed to extend the SDCC experience from a weekend to a full 52-weeks. This included a lot of original programming, but also the promise of on-demand select panels from the main convention. This included some pretty substantial ones after the fact - Game of Thrones, Fear the Walking Dead, Family Guy - but doesn't look to be happening again this year; the service has undergone a major revamp and there's been no official word about any 2017 coverage on the service.
Panels aren't the be-all-and-end-all of celebrities' time in San Diego. After each one, there's a typical run of interviews with various news outlets backstage where actors, directors and producers are asked about what was just shown and discussed, as well as wider topics. When these emerge online depend entirely on the publication doing the interview, but you can expect the videos and quotes to start popping up a few hours after the panel wraps, shedding more light on what's coming.
Official Live Coverage
Despite not being able to stream live, several groups will be providing official recaps.
Marvel will be streaming throughout the weekend on their website with Q&As, booth tours, pre-made segments and, most importantly, panel discussion. This will include a recap of the Marvel Studios panel on Sunday.
Following a similar deal for E3, Twiter and IGN have teamed up for coverage of the entire event that will include real-time panel reactions, which can be viewed at comiccon.twitter.com.
IMDb are also running their own live event on Twitter:
— IMDb (@IMDb) July 19, 2017
Screen Rant's Coverage
Moving aside from watching panels, the best way to keep up to date with all the big news and reveals from SDCC 2017 is right here at Screen Rant.
We're on the floor taking in everything the convention center has to offer, as well as covering all the major panels and trailers with breaking news stories and in-depth feature analysis. Keep up to date on our Facebook, Twitter and of course right here on ScreenRant.com.