Chris Hardwick (of the Nerdist podcast) introduced Rich Moore, director of Wreck-it Ralph (and former director of many classic episodes of The Simpsons) to the SDCC Comic-Con audience. Moore described the film as the story of a 1980s coin-op video game bad guy who’s having an existential crisis, and no longer wants to be the villain.
They then played ten minutes of various scenes from the film, where Ralph describes the video game world he lives in, and how while “Fix-It Felix, Jr.” players just see sprites on a screen, there’s a whole real world behind the screen.
It’s a world where Felix and the other Nicelanders get to go home at the end of the day, while Ralph’s home is in a dump, with bricks for blankets. He describes this to his twelve-step group of fellow bad guys, who give him validation and tell him that while he may be a bad guy, he’s not a “bad guy.” As he leaves the twelve-step group (located in Pac-Man’s ghost home base), he passes through Game Central Station, a tightly secured hub to all video game worlds.
Another scene has Fix-It Felix looking for Ralph in the high-definition modern warfare shooter “Hero’s Duty”, where he’s nearly blasted by Jane Lynch‘s hard-nosed solder character. In the last clip, Ralph rescues Sarah Silverman‘s character, Vanellope von Schweetz, from being bullied by older kids who consider her a worthless “glitch.”
Moore listed off the cast, which includes John C. Reilly, Jack McBrayer, Sarah Silverman, and Jane Lynch, with music by Skrillex (perhaps inspired by Disney’s earlier choice to use Daft Punk for Tron: Legacy)
Hardwick then introduced Reilly and Silverman for Q&A.
Reilly was asked if he preferred voice acting to “real” acting. He says basically, he prefers being employed. And voice acting has been a fascinating and engaging process for him. He then was asked if it was hard balancing two different personalities. He said it’s easy, because he’s a Gemini, the astrological sign of the twins.
Moore was asked how hard it was to get licensing for the various video game characters in the film. He said it was surprisingly easy, and the licensees wanted to be a part of a movie about video games. Reilly joked that if you’re Frogger, and it’s been about thirty years since you’ve been famous, it’s probably pretty easy to get you to sign a licensing deal. Moore was asked if there were any video game characters they couldn’t get the rights to. He said they couldn’t get the rights to Super Mario Brothers.
Silverman said she plays a 9-year-old girl who’s not accepted in her own game, and she loved that Vanellope’s greatest fault was also her greatest asset.
They then ended the panel with an action-packed preview clip of “in-production” footage from Gore Verbinski‘s The Lone Ranger, starring Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer, whose plot, based on the clips shown, seemed to have something to do with the ability to control time.