Fans have been wanting to see geek-hero Nathan Fillion at a Salt Lake City comic con for a long while — and so has the event’s founder, Dan Farr.
Farr pursued Fillion for a long time. The demand for the actor, famous for his role as Captain Malcolm Reynolds in "Firefly" and "Serenity," and his more recent turn in ABC’s "Castle," was obvious.
The Salt Lake Comic Con, in its second iteration after a wildly successful debut last September, includes dozens of celebrities — William Shatner, Karl Urban, Karen Gillan, Adam Baldwin and Edward James Olmos among them. FanX also will host more than 70 panels, ranging from tips on becoming a voice actor for film, television and games to the history of Batman’s sidekick, Robin. See saltlakecomiccon.com for full details.
When » April 17-19
Where » Salt Palace Convention Center, Salt Lake City
Tickets » From $10 for Thursday-only youth pass to $175 VIP pass; available at saltlakecomiccon.com.
"We did this poll with fans on Facebook, and Nathan Fillion was No. 1 [most requested guest]," said Salt Lake Comic Con founder Dan Farr. "We asked who you would like to see, and the fact that Nathan Fillion topped the list was impressive. He’s a great guy, and I love him. But I didn’t realize he would have that appeal to that level."
When the organizers announced Tuesday that they had finally landed Fillion to appear at the Salt Lake Comic Con FanXperience later this month, the timing with April Fool’s Day lent a hint of skepticism to the reaction.
"I swear to Odin if this is a joke I will burn the whole state to ash with my rage," one Alex Brown commented on the Facebook announcement.
But a news release issued the next day clarified the announcement as indeed being true. Fillion is scheduled to attend one day, signing autographs and participating in a celebrity spotlight panel — though which day is still to be determined, according to the release.
"It was like the thing with Stan Lee last year. We tried for months and months to get Stan and then finally, when we had the tickets sales and a little nudge from Lou Ferrigno, it happened."
Farr said the Fillion announcement will be a big boost for ticket sales. He said organizers have sold about 25,000 tickets and he expects to sell at least 50,000 by the time the event starts April 17.
"Firefly" and "Serenity" rocketed Fillion to geek stardom. His turn as the pompous Captain Hammer in Joss Whedon’s musical, "Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog," cemented his place in hearts of many a science-fiction fan.
More recently, Fillion has been portraying a mystery novelist in ABC’s "Castle." He has also appeared in "Slither," television soap operas and sitcoms, acted for the stage and lent his voice to "Halo" video games and animated films such as "Monsters University," "Wonder Woman," "Green Lantern: Emerald Knights" and "Justice League: Doom."
FanXperience runs April 17-19 at the Salt Palace Convention Center.
Reporter Vince Horiuchi contributed to this story.
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