August 27th to 29th, 2004
CNAnime was a blast inspite of the short comings and chain of disasters and events. The new Nova digital performed well except in hallways which has proven difficult with the change of lighting to flourscent bulbs. Some glitches appeared but lucky I took more than one picture of people. All told, 395 pictures and videos totalling near 400meg of space. You can see why it's taken so long.
Too make up for lack of a challenge for Anime North, I ran my first art challenge at CNAnime. The 4 KOMA Project was a success and I have plans for running it next year at both cons.
The duel of costume builders that starred in past years had parted company and were now tow seperate companies. Either way their costumes were totally impressive. Neither spoke ill of the other and worked the crowds in their own way. A true double-double of awesomeness.
Someone had a Borg teddy bear... Irony is that chances are it was made with fake fur made by Borg Textiles. I was surprised at how graceful George Takai was in giving autographs.
One of the creators of TMNT along with his studio of 4 artists were in tow this year. It was also the first time, I was running with a new idea for artist challenge, the 4 Koma Project. 4 Koma or 4 panel is a Japanese sttyle comic strip consisting of 4 panels read vertically top to bottom as oppose to left to right. While they all balked at the idea at first... something else worked in my favor.
Fortunate for fans, misfortunate for the artists. A booth selling graphic software was running the presentation .... over and over and over again... all weekend. Eventually, I was passing by when they begged for a strip. Anything to break from the constant sales pitch. To my surprise, Michael Dooney, Eric Talbot, Steve Lavigne and Jim Lawson agreed to work on one topic Shizen ...Nature.
As for the price for doing the strip; the artists asked I donate to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund in their honor.
This years guest from Enterprise was Anthony Montgomery and one of my most embarssing moments at Fan Expo... er. maybe I should backup here.
Earlier on Saturday, Chris Sabat asked if I knew the 'Navigator' of Star Trek. Takai? No the new series. Anthony Montgomery is favorite crew member for his work on the episode "Fortunate Son". His protrayal of dealing with loss of his father mirrored my own experience with loss my own dad. I could feel the empathy he protrayed and it's my favorite 'Trek' episode ever. Chris was impressed with my appraisal of his acting skill and was interested in teaming up with him for some project. I didn't ask if it was anime or game related.
Time passed until I realized it was 6pm! I had forgotten about Chris Sabat's request to ask Anthony Montgomery if he would talk to Chris. Given last year where Connor Trinneer left right after Sunday panel, I had to do this NOW! I peeled up the escalators to the show floor. Fought through the crowds, looked up for his name and photo over the heads for his table. I couldn't see anything from the crowds until I got to the table and.... what?
Anthony Montgomery was no where to be seen... just his body guard, a football player of a guy sitting at the table. Turning to the laughter to my right was Anthony Montgomery who was talking to another college. I was too embarssed to pass on Chris's request. Instead I got a sign photo for a friend in Japan and tried feably to explain and apologize.
Next day before Anthony Montgomery's panel, I went back to Chris Sabat to apologize for botching his request ... instead he asked me to go back to Anthony Montgomery and ask him if he was the voice of Mister Popo. O_o I agreed at his insistance only to have Anthony Montgomery shake my hand. More O_o ... Chris had managed to talk with him about a possible job and how I told Chris how a great actor Montgomery was. I asked for a photo of both of Anthony Montgomery and his friend on Saturday. It serves as a reminder to not NEVER put off when I agree to do something for someone and Keep Calm and make sure that the person who is at the table before doing anything.
Once again the masquerade was in the theatre that housed Canadian Idol but this time a large mat covered the stage and the Canadian Idol logo.
Once again Gord Rose took the stage as master of Cermonies and Emperor of the masquerade.
Morning after the masquerade registration desk was busy with handing out last night's results from the judges. However, another event would marked Sunday.
Seemed to be a theme this year with power outage during Anime North's masquerade that it would hit again during Sunday this year at CN Anime.
The volunteers moved to back of the hall trying to get the crowd to move. Some dealers started covering their tables while others started watch their stuff like hawks in case someone trying to take advantage of the situation as people milled towards the bay window front where there was enough light or down the escaltors. it did't take long for power to be restored. Still I heard that the Skydome also suffered the same fate but worse, one of their backup power generators caught fire when it kicked in.
CN Anime kicked back into gear once the power was restored.
Anthony Montgomery's panel was great with more stories of how the cast got along than some of the more behind the scenes. How the Scott Bakula would remember everyone's birthday... including the real crew of Enterprise, those who produce the show. He told of the botched gag of the cast on the bridge doing a spoof of his Canada Dry commercial for his birthday. Interesting enough the other cast members in other panels at CN Anime praised Anthony Montgomery as an actor and a friend and wished the director and execs had given him more a part in the show.
Once again I rushed around collecting and trying to complete 4 Koma Project strips. I managed to get a total of 7 full strips, collaboration of 28 artists, in under 3 days. Not only that I ran out to a photo copy center down the street and copied each completed strip for each of the artists. Some I would have to wait until later to give them their copy and also I managed to put togehter a limited print run poster of all 7 strips.
2004 was big year with change over from film which I only could afford to take a limited number of photos to digital which was only limited to memory card and the life of the batteries. The 4 Koma Project would run for another few years at various events around Toronto and locally at the London Comic Jam.