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Comic-Con 2013: ‘The World’s End’ Panel

The World's End Comic-Con 2013
Focus Features

Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright reunited once again on the famed Hall H stage to kick off Friday’s Comic-Con 2013 festivities with a panel presentation for ‘The World’s End.’ Not only does the title fit well within the film’s apocalyptic depictions, but it also marks the end of the trio’s Cornetto trilogy (the first installments being ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and ‘Hot Fuzz’). So what new bits did these funnymen have in store for us?

After screening the trailer, Chris Hardwick came out to introduce panelists Wright, Pegg and Frost.

But first, the crowd got to see a behind-the-scenes featurette on the Cornetto trilogy, which began with ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and ‘Hot Fuzz.’ “’The World’s End’ is an adventure movie with an extremely irresponsible King Arthur at the helm of it,” said Wright in the video amidst varying footage from the three films. “We believe this [‘The World’s End’] to be a great sendoff,” said Frost.

“If you’ve ever watched ‘Doctor Who’ and thought he should be really hammered, then this is the movie for you,” joked Wright, following the screening. “Let’s call it Doctor Who-ootch!”

“Our TARDIS in this film is beer,” said Pegg, who plays the “Doctor” in this analogy. On his character, “He’s kind of the villain of the film as much as he is the hero.” Essentially, he’s stuck in the 1990s and brings his friends, who’ve all moved on, back to that era.

For those who are unaware, the trio went on to describe what loosely ties the Cornetto trilogy films together, which is, aside from various other intricacies, ice cream. In ‘Shaun of the Dead,’ the strawberry flavor signified blood, blue in ‘Hot Fuzz’ for the police, and finally chuckleman green for the aliens in ‘The World’s End.’

As Wright recollects, ‘Shaun of the Dead’ coming to Comic-Con back in the day was the first time he opened up the film (and the subsequent trilogy) to a larger audience, and the acclaim was what made them keep the humor very “British.”

“This film is about friends reuniting, and we haven’t made a film together in about six years,” said Pegg. “We all came back together and it was like putting on a pair of comfortable slippers.” Though, this time around they’ve included a couple new faces, including Rosamund Pike, and, as he teased, a few cameos.

So is this really the end for the trio? As Pegg says, these three films were created in accordance to a set of rules, almost. “The next thing we do together won’t abide by [the rules of the Cornetto trilogy].” When you see the movie, you’ll see things that’ll essentially wrap up a few things, as Wright said.

So what is next for these three? Well, in addition to ‘Ant-Man,’ Edgar Wright joked that he’ll be putting together a spinoff film, starring Pegg as Abdoman and Frost as Thorax. As far as I’m concerned, if they weren’t joking, it sounds better than ‘Scary Movie.’

The panel finished with a fan Q&A, in which the three revealed a couple more behind-the-scenes details about ‘The World’s End.’ For one, there was hardly any improvisation at all, according to Frost. “Anything that we find in rehearsal that’s funny ends up going in the script … We don’t improvise hardly at all.”

Pegg: “… We’ll bring the script to Nick who sprinkles his fairy dust on it.“

Frost: “It’s actually dandruff.”

Wright: “If Nick Frost stops you on the convention floor and tries to sprinkle fairy dust on you, run!”

Secondly, this movie was pretty challenging for the cast because of all the action scenes. “We try to push ourselves with the fighting,” said Pegg. “We devised a new martial art called Pub-fu,” which led to the star breaking his hand. “I was jumping over a bar and it snapped and then I did six more shots ‘cause Edgar didn’t get the shot. I had to have a temporary cast on it for the rest of the shoot.”

One thing we shouldn’t expect, now or in the future, however, is a trip to space. “I don’t think we will [return to space],” said Wright. “One of the things about space is it’s about the joys of being young. I want to sort of leave them as 26 forever.”

“We’d retroactively spoil what we did,” said Pegg. “We did want to do a third series back in the day … It could sully the memory of what we did. I don’t think it’ll happen again.”

And the cherry on top of the panel, other than a couple more Q&As, was a new Mike Relm “megamix” consisting of footage from all three films, which, as Wright says, will be online in the near future.

‘The World’s End’ hits theaters on August 23.

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