Before this weekend, M. Night Shyamalan had never been to a comic conference of any kind. But luckily for fans of the "Sixth Sense" and "Unbreakable" director, he made an exception for New York Comic Con 2010, where he turned out for an hour-long panel moderated by MTV's own Josh Horowitz. The panel was not to discuss the auteur's most recent cinematic endeavor, "The Last Airbender," however; instead, Night was on hand to reminisce about "Unbreakable," which -- believe it or not -- celebrates its 10-year anniversary this November.
Initially met with box office and critical disdain when it was released in 2000, Shyamalan's tale of a security guard (Bruce Willis) who discovers that he's a real-life comic-book hero, has come to be regarded as one of the finest superhero films ever put to celluloid.
During an illuminating panel discussion in the Javits Center's packed theater, Night talked about why he hasn't made "Unbreakable 2" (he said he felt like "a failure" after the film's icy reception), showed the audience never-before-seen story boards, and walked the crowd through his creative process.
It was like a session of Filmmaking 101, but with lots of funny anecdotes and some equally hilarious fan questions (this "Sixth Sense" query was our personal fave: "Why was he dead the whole time? It made me so mad.")
Shyamalan remained candid after the panel, joining MTV News in our skybox for a laid-back one-on-one in which he chatted about just how drastically the reaction to "Unbreakable" has changed over the years.
"It was initially hating," he laughed. "If we were hanging out back then, you would have heard: 'Oh, "Unbreakable" sucks! "Unbreakable" sucks!' You just hear them openly going at me about it. And then as time went on you hear them say, 'I know some people didn't like it, but I really loved it.' So it's a transition. It's almost like stages of mourning. Then you get to the place like four years later where people start running across traffic when I get out of a car -- you hear like tires screech actually happens -- and then people come running and be like, '"Unbreakable" is my favorite movie of all time! Wait right here; I'm going to buy a DVD. I'm like, 'I can't just stand in the parking lot while you go buy a DVD, but I appreciate it.'"
He continues: "It's almost like the group that didn't get the movie, or was disappointed that it wasn't a scary movie, got quiet, and the group that loved the movie, who was very quiet, became vocal. And now they run the show."
So does this mean Night will reassess his position on making that long-awaited "Unbreakable" sequel? While he won't give a definitive answer, we're hoping this weekend's outpouring of love for the film will provide him with some seriously "Unbreakable" incentive.
Are you one of the diehard "Unbreakable" fans who's itching for a sequel? Let us know in the comments