With the news that Star Wars: The Last Jedi was the biggest film at the UK and Irish box office in 2017, Portsmouth’s newest Comic Con has announced that ILM London’s supervising art director Kevin Jenkins will be attending the event running 5th – 6th May 2018.
Jenkins is the only art director to have worked across all of the latest Star Wars sequels. After many years working on book jackets, in advertising and gaming, Jenkins moved into TV with BBC’s hit Walking with Dinosaurs series. He then worked on various shows which led to his role as art director on Steven Spielberg’s award-winning 2011 film, War Horse.
It was his War Horse experience which inspired his partnership with multi-Oscar winning production designer, Rick Carter, to lead the unit which worked on over 50 visual development projects including Clash of The Titans, World War Z, Zero Dark Thirty, Dredd, Edge of Tomorrow, Thor: The Dark World, Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers: Age of Ultron before his move to ILM where he is currently working on a number of upcoming Lucasfilm projects.
Kevin joins an already impressive line-up of creators from around the world which includes the likes of Russell Walks, Walter and Louise Simonson, Tommy Lee Edwards, Rafael Albuquerque, Frank Quitely, Tim Bradstreet and Dave Dorman.
(Sadly, it’s been announced Mark Buckingham has had to withdraw from the event and cancel all convention appearances for the coming months due to a medical emergency in the family).
Alongside the stellar artist line-up, cosplay and a Comic City of collectables and merchandise featuring lead retailer Forbidden Planet, Portsmouth Comic Con has a range of entertainment zones that will take visitors behind the scenes of comics and the screen.
This will include a Virtual Reality Zone hosted by The University of Portsmouth, an Interactive Zone of video and gaming and a Wonder Zone featuring FX artists, character illustration workshops, and costume displays.
There will also be an Ewok exhibition and a Steampunk area designed to reflect the subculture popularised by the likes of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen series of graphic novels by Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill.
Led by the Gosport Steampunk Society, the fastest-growing society of its kind in the South, the dedicated area will feature nerf duels, target shooting, a photo booth and the staple of all Steampunk events – the magnificent tea duelling where visitors will face off over a Victorian tea table to satisfy their honour.
If you are serious about comics, love Marvel films or cult series like Doctor Who and Star Trek or are simply looking for a fun family day out, this is the event for you.
The event is the brainchild of Portsmouth Guildhall and Tripwire Magazine a title that has been, for over 25 years, the pre-eminent comic and genre publication read by some of the biggest names in the film, TV and comic industry.
• A range of tickets are available and with Early Bird discounts ending on 31st January 2018. Book your tickets now at www.portsmouthcomiccon.com or call the Box Office on 0844 847 2362
• The Art of Star Wars: The Last Jedi offers a comprehensive look inside the creation of the film and features a forward by director Rian Johnson as well as intimate conversations with many members of the art and technical team, including Kevin Jenkins. Polygon ran a feature on the book here – be warned there are spoilers if you haven’t seen the film yet
• The Gosport Steampunk Society meet on the first Tuesday of every month at The Fighting Cocks pub in Clayhall Road, Alverstoke, for a Convivial Evening. Find them here on Facebook
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.