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My weekend with the Iron Throne at Miscon 26…Part 1.

30 May

The sun rose at about 5Am last Friday morning while I was sitting at my desk still working on the announcement trailer for “Legendary”.  Slept had not met me since the previous Monday and the amount of Redbull cans that surrounded me was that of epic stature!  Our photographer and principle “behind the scenes” shooter, Annie Bardonski, had just arrived and we began to instantly load up camera equipment, laptops, and notepads.  We left SW Washington and arrived at director Barry Morgan’s house where executive producer Guido Orio also joined us.  We loaded into Orio’s car and hit the road for Missoula, Montana.  Today was the day we would meet the creator of “Game Of Thrones”, Mr. George R. R. Martin, and promote “Embers Of War” and “Legendary” at Miscon 26!

Did Sean Bean ever make it this far? 😉

Friday’s drive out to Montana was interesting!  I was asked to be part of a panel on Friday night with Mr. Martin to talk about writing for the screen and my involvement within the new media space.  The panel was to start at 6PM and were were running LATE!

With Orio driving like Mad Max we passed through the Tri-cities in record time….and that’s when the red and blue came on behind us.  We pulled over to the side of the highway and another car pulled ahead of.  We thought “the cop pulled two cars over at the same time!”  The cop came to the passenger side and told us we were speeding.  Duh!  But he said he needed to check on the other car as well, so get the registration and license ready.  A few minutes passed and he came back.  “Today’s your lucky day.  The guy ahead of you is drunk.  Don’t speed and have a safe trip!”.  Talk about lucky!!!!

We arrived in Missoula at Miscon 26 (which was taking place at Ruby’s Hotel and Convention Center) at five minutes past 6PM!  I was late to a panel with George R. R. Martin!!!  I rushed through registration with the help of a very nice young female who comped Annie, Barry, and Orio, and then we were whisked away to the “Great Hall” where the panel was taking place.  I was welcomed quickly and everyone settled right back in.  There was a crowd of about 150 people in the room and Eldon Thompson (panel moderator) was asking George questions about “Game” and the amount of creative control he has on the show.  His responses were amazing and used such phrases as “HBO sends dump truck loads of money…and it’s nice!” along with “Hollywood is full of shitsniffers…And I have never wanted a brown nose!”.  Hilarity abound, Eldon turned and discussed my writing credentials in LA, my work on the sequel script for Goonies:  Part 2, and my ongoing involvement in the realm of new media.  When “Legendary” was brought up and discussed, George cut me off to say “You use real horses?!  They barely let us use them on the show!  We have to have men with coconuts standing by to mimic hoofing sounds!”.

Cthulu Bob (far left), George R. R. Martin, Eldon Thompson, and JLee

Part of the crowd during our panel “Writing for the silver screen”.

The panel ended and the four of us headed to our hotel room over at the Holiday Inn Express (thanks Tiffany Forni!) to drop off bags and unwind for a second before “Embers Of War” screened on a two hour panel and Q and A.  The turnout wasn’t massive but it was a very active Q and A!  Loads of questions about the VFX side of the series, where it’s filmed, what it’s shot on, and how the story came to fruition.  There were several film students in the room and it was awesome to be able to share some of the experiences and stories with them while we have been filming “Embers”.  It was a fun little panel and got us much closer to some of the fans who watch the show!

“Embers Of War” Screening and Q and A

After the screening, the room parties began!  Now, if you have never been to a fantasy, comic, or scifi convention, let me explain what room parties are.  Normally, several other convention organizers will show up and promote on of their upcoming cons.  At Miscon, several were there such as Radcon, Spocon, and Worldcon!  Each one was given a room to throw parties in on the second floor balcony overlooking the pool and the free booze flowed!

Part of the second floor balcony and all the wonderful drunks!

There were elves running around half naked, fairies doing shots, and weird people in random steam pun garb!  We made our way around and hit up every room, networking, making new friends, and just enjoying ourselves!

This lady was hysterical!

Not quite sure what she was…But Barry (to the right) didn’t really care!

Proof that goth apparently isn’t dead…as we’ve hoped!

This is also where I met the wonderful Sarah Kelley and discussed film and entertainment for a good hour before I started to spill my drink all over myself!  Sorry Sarah!

The wonderful Sarah (right) and the feisty Jenn (left).

Spocon’s room by far had the best and craziest concoctions and they would not let anyone know what they put in it!  Cool dudes though and they’re room party was hoppin’ on Friday night!

George loved to chat it up…and loved Annie!

Crazy broads were everywhere!

Annie B. (right) stares in confusion as Barry Morgan (center) and JLee (left) are on a quest for more booze!

Somehow…Orio looks like a dwarf in this picture! There could be a possible Hobbit audition in Orio’s future!

This is a FOX! I made the mistake of saying “nice werewolf costume”…and then got read the riot act!

There was a drag contest..and well…these dudes deserved to win!

Saturday came and Miscon’s chairman extended us an invite to screen “Legendary’s” trailer and a sneak peek clip on the IRON THRONE in front of a wonderful group of people!  Orio and Annie made up flyers that were passed around the convention and with the throne as our backdrop, we showed the trailer to an awesome crowd and talked the show up.  Questions were in detail and people were excited!  We even had a whole SCA group show up in garb to support the series!

Orio and Annie designed some nice flyers that went all around the convention Saturday to promote the “Legendary” panel that night!

After the panel and screening, we mingled with a few people to discuss Legendary more in depth.  Then we were allowed to hold a private video and photo shoot on the Iron Throne.  We recorded an intro for Indie Intertube’s live Sunday show and many other things such as “Thank You’s”.  This is about when I was sitting there, Annie was taking a pic, and a drunken man in a Kermit the Frog costume stumbled into the room.  My response was “I have to get a picture with you!”.  He took this as a “Please come jump in my lap on this throne!”.  The following picture and video should describe the incident.  I am just hoping that Annie Bardonski does not post any others!

WTF? Fantasy convention! Not the Muppet Show!

Saturday was also the day that I had been meandering outside on the balcony while a bunch of other panels were going on.  Mr. Martin appeared on the balcony ahead of me and met me halfway.  “Mr. Lee!”, he said.  “The new media dude!  Tell me a bit more about this stuff!”.  What I thought was going to be a 30 second convo turned into a full hour of conversation with George and ended up being the most inspirational conversation with a single human being I have ever had.  He talked to me about story and character, to never give up on a dream and to never give in to others who say something cannot be done.  When I asked him how he has dealt with criticism…he simply responded “There comes a time when those  that have sat back and been the critic will realize…they’ve never written a story…a screenplay…or made an idea come to life.  Let alone one with kings, beautiful women, sexual appeal, dragons, bad guys….and dwarves!”  This full conversation put a giant smile on my face and I thanked George for being such an inspiration.  He was an awesome guest of honor and an incredible man to get to know!  Thank you again George!

Creator of “Game Of Thrones”, George R. R. Martin and creator of “Legendary: A Tale Of Blood And Steel”, JLee.

We stayed for several more hours, enjoying room parties, meeting more people.  Hell…there was even a rave going on in one of the rooms with black lights and glow sticks!  It’s quite the experience to see someone dressed up as a Star War’s Rebel fighter grinding up against a chick dressed up as a Jawa!

Sarah and Jenn caught us on the way out to say “Bye”.

We soon packed the car up and headed back to Portland.  The idea was to get back in time for Wonder NW in Portland and jump on a panel towards the end of the day but, apparently, that panel was full.  Very much a bummer as we had lots to share from the weekend!

Later in the afternoon on Sunday, the world wide release of the trailer for “Legendary:  A Tale Of Blood And Steel”  aired on Indie Intertube’s live show!  We watched in amazement as over 3400 viewers tuned in to watch it live!  A giant thank you to Destini and Shad for being so supportive!

I will follow this blog up tomorrow with a Part 2!!!!

MISCON 26 FOR THE WIN!!!

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Indie Intertube Interview and “Legendary” Day #1!

10 May

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Yesterday, I called into Indie Intertube‘s live podcast where hosts, Destini and Shad did a wonderful interview with me!  We talked the state of new media and touched on topics such as sustainability and new ways of platforming shows.  We also discussed in much detail my new series (along with “Arcana” creator, Barry Morgan) “Legendary:  A Tale Of Blood And Steel” as well as the future for “Embers Of War“.

Don’t miss out on MISCON 26 at the end of this month where “Embers Of War” will have a full two hour interactive panel and “Legendary” will get a taste of the “Iron Throne” and George R. R. Martin!!!! 

Today also marks the first day where several cast members and myself will be going through fight choreography with Jeff Richardson at the Academia Duelletoria!  The we will be making a journey out to Mckay Creek Stables to see the horses that will also be some of the stars in “Legendary”!  It’s going to be a fun filled day!

Original series for the win!!!!

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