Oscar nominated documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock is usually in front of the camera for his features, be it his 30-day “diet” of McDonald’s for Super Size Me, his journey to the Middle East for 2008′s Where in the World is Osama bin Laden? (obviously prior to the Al Qaeda leader’s death), or his attempt to fund a movie about product placement with product placement in Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold.
But for his latest, Spurlock turns the spotlight on everyday people in Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope. As the title suggests, the movie is about the annual popular arts convention, Comic-Con, held every summer in San Diego. The subjects are fans of comic books, video games, movies and television shows, just a few of the more than 120,000 who flock to Southern California every year.
Thanks to the backing of Joss Whedon as producer, Legendary Pictures founder Thomas Tull, ultimate fanboy Harry Knowles of Ain’t It Cool and the creator of some of the most famous comic-book characters, Stan Lee, the convention granted Spurlock and his 150-person crew access they’ve never granted before.
Shot at the 2010 convention, they captured some 650 hours of footage, with 25 cameras running at any given time, over the course of eight days (some leading up to and others following the convention), Spurlock focuses his story on five characters; Eric and Skip are aspiring illustrators hoping to land a job with their portfolio of work; Chuck has sold comic books for years and is hoping for some major sales to pay off debts; James met his girlfriend at the 2009 Con and has plans to propose during the Kevin Smith panel; Holly is a costume and creature designer entering the costume masquerade.
In the documentary, several directors relate their ultimate Stan Lee moment. Spurlock had his own and explains how it lead to this movie getting made.