Comic-Con HQ’s EVP Talks Getting Ready For San Diego, Live Coverage, Special Guests And More

Comic-Con HQ subscription service will stream panels and original programming.
Comic-Con HQ subscription service will stream panels and original programming. Comic-Con International

San Diego Comic-Con begins Thursday, July 21, and while thousands of fans will descend upon California for the four-day event, many will be home waiting for the news coming out of the largest pop culture event in the country.

While it may sting to see so many people attending the convention, Comic-Con HQ is ready to bring the convention to you.

The official partner of Comic-Con International, Comic-Con HQ has been in beta since May and is ready to kick things off with what EVP and General Manager of Comic-Con HQ Seth Laderman calls their “Super Bowl.”

“Our goal is to bring the most comprehensive coverage of Comic-Con that anyone’s ever seen,” Laderman told iDigitalTimes. “That’s why we’re going to be live for five hours….right in the heart of when the doors open. With our goal really being to bring the experience to those who can’t make it to Comic-Con while also trying to enhance the experience for those who do attend because there is so much content it’s literally impossible to see everything.

“We’re going to have a stage with our live coverage hosted by Alison Haislip and Steve Zaragoza and throughout the day we are going to be bringing talent on the stage, sending people on the showfloor and to outside activations, we’re going to be talking to fans and reporting news from the biggest and best panels. Essentially we want to be able to let everyone know what’s happening at Comic-Con in real time for them to gain the experience themselves.”

Comic-Con HQ is currently available on desktops, iOS and Android devices, as well as Amazon and Roku services. Fans can expect a lot when they log in to the service. Every day between the hours of 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. EDT, Comic-Con HQ’s coverage will begin, with plenty of guests scheduled to appear throughout the long weekend.

As a partner with Lionsgate films, Comic-Con HQ will welcome Emma Roberts and Dave Franco from the movie Nerve, and the cast of the upcoming Power Rangers movie. Fans can also expect the cast of Sharknado 4, Nathan Fillion and Alan Tudyk from Con Man , Mystery Science Theater 3000 , the cast of Orphan Black and DC Comics writer Collin Kelly among many others.

“Our goal here was to have a very diverse group of people coming down. This isn’t about the biggest tv shows or the biggest movies, this is about the artists, this is about the comic books this is about the people that built Comic-Con to what it is,” Laderman said. “And lucky for us we have a lot of outreach and people were really receptive to it.”

Comic-Con HQ will also be taking their coverage to the San Diego streets. As anyone who has attended this convention already knows, the festivities reach farther than the convention center itself. And to bring viewers as close to the Comic-Con experience as possible, HQ will be traveling to different off site activations.

“I have five field talents covering off site activations,” Laderman said. “We’re going everywhere, we’ve been outreaching and talking because these offsite activations are part of the experience and the only way we can help people feel that experience and get excited and try to come here is to try and cover that as much as possible.”

But don’t worry, if there’s some breaking news, Comic-Con HQ is prepared, situating its staff at panels and using the power of social media to try and bring you the latest in real time.

“If something drops, say, on YouTube we’ll be watching that clip with the audience and talking about it right there. If news breaks we’ll be breaking into our coverage and talking about that news right there,” Laderman explained. “When talent comes to our stage, most of them will be coming to us after they are done with their panels so we’ll be talking about some of the news that does break. That’s one of the main things we are focusing on here, probably every five to 15 minutes a different news story is breaking so we are going to be working as hard as we can to bring that news to the audience in real time.”

And speaking of panels, one of the many draws to Comic-Con HQ when it was first announced was the inclusion of taped panels. While HQ won’t be livestreaming any of the panels, the service was granted permission from over 100 panels to be distributed shortly after they are finished.

When each panel appears on HQ varies, but Laderman assured us they will work to put them up as soon as they can, including a majority of the Hall H panels. Fans who are unable to attend will want to check out what they have in store.

“Some of the more exciting [panels], we got HBO so we’ll be doing Silicon Valley, Game of Thrones, Vice Principals. I’m a huge Robert Kirkman fan so we’re going to get his Outcast panel, which is awesome,” Laderman said. “We have four Nickelodeon panels including Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Back to the 90s . We have a couple from BBC America including Orphan Black . We just got permission from NBC so we’re going to have Grimm , The Good Place and Blindspot .”

“So we’re working with so many and the reception has been great and most of the people are excited to get the additional distribution with the partner of Comic-Con. We’ll be announcing more in the coming days and we'll be working as hard as we can to get them up as fast as possible afterwards but we have some great ones coming.”

While Comic-Con HQ’s coverage at San Diego Comic-Con is extensive, the streaming service’s goal is to make the Comic-Con experience year-round with original content and a catalog of movies and television series (over 250 titles and counting).

Comic-Con HQ has begun to roll out its original programming with its weekly shows, like What’s News and Film HQ and seasonal series like the Her Universe Fashion Show , but the key to making HQ’s goals a success, according to Laderman, is to have consistent and constant content.

Upcoming series like Con Man Season 2, Kings of Con and Mark Hamill’s Pop Culture Quest are vital to HQ with more original programming still on the way. Look out for a new show announcement on Saturday, July 23 and a live audience female talk show starting in September.

But without looking too far ahead, Laderman knows the importance of San Diego Comic-Con 2016 to Comic-Con HQ’s launch.

“This week means the world to us. Everything we do throughout the year really is based on this weekend,” Laderman said. “My team and I are extremely excited, the Comic-Con guys who put on this amazing event are extremely excited. This is our coming out party, our way to get the message out of who we are and what we are trying to do how we are trying to help and start communicating to our fans because that is what this is all about. “

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