San Diego Comic-Con 2013 – news round-up

As the dust settles on this year's San Diego Comic-Con, we pick out the choicest stories from the geek gathering
San Diego Comic-Con 2013

The San Diego Comic-Con has wrapped up for another year, leaving only memories and endless snaps of cosplay enthusiasts scattered across news websites.

SDCC is as much of a stop on the film promotional circuit as the Cannes Film Festival these days, and the movie studios have had their hands full supplying news, clips and exclusives to placate the geek hordes. We've picked out the top stories for you, in one handy location. 

Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy
Guardians of the Galaxy

Marvel Films showed off footage from its upcoming space opera, showcasing the new additions to its cinematic universe – including Chris Pratt as half-human hero Star-Lord, Zoe Saldana as alien assassin Gamora and Dave Bautista as burly warrior Drax the Destroyer. Former Doctor Who companion Karen Gillan provided the shock of the convention, whipping off a ginger wig off to reveal a newly-bald bonce for her role as space pirate Nebula.    

The film's billed as "an anti-hero superhero movie," and it's Marvel's biggest gamble to date – a space opera with few connections to Earth as we know it, and a cast of outlandish characters including Groot (a talking tree) and Rocket Raccoon (a, er, anthropomorphic raccoon). Mind you, people said that Thor would be too much of a stretch for cinema-goers, and that's turned out well enough…

Thor: The Dark World

The highlight of the convention was undoubtedly Tom Hiddleston's ham-tastic performance as Loki, introducing new footage from Thor: The Dark World in full Asgardian regalia.

The film itself looks set to invert the plot of the original; instead of Thor being sent to our world, here it's Natalie Portman's Jane Foster who's the fish out of water in Asgard. Rather wonderfully, she gets to smack Loki in the chops ("That's for New York!"). Expect plenty of action, too – no surprise, given that the film's directed by Game of Thrones director Alan Taylor – with Thor battling a giant rock monster.


Batman/Superman Man of Steel 2

Warner Brothers took to the stage to announce the sequel to Superman film Man of Steel – and this time around, Batman is along for the ride. Man of Steel writer David S Goyer and director Zack Snyder are returning for the sequel, which will reportedly be inspired by Frank Miller's seminal 80s Batman comic The Dark Knight Returns. However, the Dark Knight himself, Christian Bale, won't be returning for this movie – it will, according to Warner Bros, kickstart a new Batman franchise.

X-Men: Days of Future Past

X-Men: Days of Future Past
X-Men: Days of Future Past

In a bid to outdo the official Marvel Studios movies, 20th Century Fox has stuffed its new X-Men film with almost every actor to have appeared in the franchise over the last decade – and they all turned up for Comic-Con.

The biggest X-Men news from the convention? Game of Thrones' Peter Dinklage has been revealed as playing Bolivar Trask, creator of the mutant-killing robot Sentinels. Director Bryan Singer also revealed key details of the plot, which will follow Hugh Jackman's Wolverine as he travels back in time to avert a mutant apocalypse – by teaching the young Professor X (James McAvoy).

Avengers: Age of Ultron

Avengers: Age of Ultron

The Avengers sequel isn't dropping until 2015, but we now have a few tantalising details about the superhero royal rumble courtesy of director Joss Whedon. Avengers: Age of Ultron will feature the killer robot Ultron (unsurprisingly) though it won't be based on the recent comic-book miniseries of the same name.

In the comics, Ultron's a sentient robot created by scientist Hank Pym – also known as Ant-Man. Although The World's End director Edgar Wright is working on an Ant-Man movie, that element of Ultron's backstory won't feature in the Avengers sequel. Instead, it's likely that Tony Stark will be the brains behind the robot.  Whedon's also revealed that the film will be "globetrotting" and "darker," and that Jeremy Renner's Hawkeye will have more to do this time around – not being possessed and all.

Doctor Who

Doctor Who: 50th Anniversary
An Adventure in Space and Time

It's the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who this year, and the BBC's celebrating its long-running sci-fi series in style – with a special episode that'll team up Matt Smith's Eleventh Doctor with his predecessor David Tennant. As well as sending Smith out onto the convention floor in disguise, the BBC also revealed some tantalising details of the special – the Daleks will be back, while it's looking increasingly like John Hurt is playing a previously-unseen Ninth Doctor.

A trailer for anniversary docudrama "An Adventure in Space and Time" also got an airing – featuring David Bradley in a melancholy turn as William Hartnell, the first actor to play Doctor Who. It's packed with recreations of the original 1960s series, including vintage Daleks and the old-school Cybermen that were realised with sticky tape and a bag over their heads.