'Priest' Panel Report: Comic-Con Vs. The Vampire Apocalypse!

PriestBy Ryan J Downey

The panel for "Priest," the first Tokyo Pop graphic novel to be given the film treatment, boasted exclusive footage of the post apocalyptic vampire movie, which features a pair of vampires from "True Blood" and "Twilight."

Here's a moment-by-moment report:


Director Scott Stewart takes the stage and asks the crowd to get out their 3D glasses as he introduced exclusive Comic-Con footage that will not be released elsewhere anytime soon.


Cam Gigandet, Stephen Moyer, Karl Urban, Maggie Q and Priest himself, Paul Bettany, join Stewart on stage. Urban's introduction gets the biggest response.


Bettany said he had a "rapport" and a "shorthand" pretty immediately when they started working on "Legion." He loved working on "Priest" with him especially because the budget was bigger which allowed for more "grandeur."


Urban calls his character a "black hat," a former warrior priest everyone presumed dead. "I spend most of this film wreaking chaos in the wastelands," he said.


"I play Paul Bettany's shorter, better looking brother," Moyer said to laughs.


Scott says he wanted to shoot in film and make the movie anamorphic. He wanted it to have a nostalgic quality "in terms of the kinds of lenses and cameras that we used." He said they are spending "many, many months" on the 3-D process. "Six months or more."


Genndy Tartakovsky, the creator of "Samurai Jack" and "Star Wars: The Clone Wars" joins the panel. He created the animated prologue that begins "Priest." "I was like, "Wow, we get to show decapitation and blood and violence," he said of working on the movie vs television. "You take the shackles off and just for it." Stewart then introduces the work-in-progress prologue.


The first fan question was about 3-D and how it will change things. "The only reason to do it is if you think it's going to enhance the experience for the audience," Stewart said. "It's another tool in the toolbox."


Stewart was stoked that the next fan noticed the vampires didn't have eyes in the footage. "I love Comic Con!" He said he wanted them to be like nocturnal creatures in nature.


Cam called the vampires in Priest "feral beasts," calling them similar to the Twilight vampires in name only. Moyer agreed that they are quite different than the "True Blood" vamps as well.


Bettany said he can't keep up fight training and exercise when he isn't being paid to do it. "I've been practicing mostly my beer and cheese skills since" shooting concluded.

Both he and Maggie did a lot of pushups. Paul said his body has since reverted to "the body of a reader."


Urban said "the villains are characters that are full of conviction... It's a lot of fun to be the bad guy and do naughty things to people."


Maggie's old track coach got up to ask the last question, much to her delight. "Are you kidding me? It's so nice to see you!"

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