It’s safe to say that this year’s Wizard World Comic Con, Friday through Sunday at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, could easily turn into an “Avengers” weekend. Most of the principals from the Marvel mega movie franchise — stars Jeremy Renner, Chris Evans, Hayley Atwell, Frank Grillo, producers Joe and Anthony Russo and even New Orleans’ own Anthony Mackie — will make appearances at the fantasy convention.
But that doesn’t mean there won’t be a wide range of other stars to check out at the event, which features not just actors from the sci-fi, fantasy and comic book worlds, but also comicbook artists and illustrators and even popular wrestlers. Here’s a look at 10 to look for.
Few actors have been able to both embrace and expand beyond their most famous character as Shatner, who portrayed Capt. Kirk in both the TV and film versions of “Star Trek,” then lampooned fan geeks in an infamous “Saturday Night Live” sketch only to embrace the comic-book and fantasy convention circuit. He’s also an Emmy and Golden Globe winner for his work on the TV legal show “Boston Legal.” Appearing Friday night and Saturday.
For most cult-movie fans, Bostwick will forever be remembered as Brad in “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” He went on to a successful career in TV, most notably as Mayor Randall Winston in the 1990s sitcom “Spin City,” and won a Golden Globe for the World War II TV-movie adaptation of Herman Wouk’s “War and Remembrance.”
The platinum-blond World Wrestling Entertainment Hall of Famer — aka “The Nature Boy— is a frequent visitor to New Orleans and has been one of the more charismatic wrestlers in recent history (including his trademark yell, “Wooo!”). He last appeared at the WWE Wrestlemania XXX in 2014. He will be joined by WWE Diva Charlotte. Appearing 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Friday.
Forever known to fantasy fans as Ash Williams in Sam Raimi’s cult-film “Evil Dead” series, Campbell also appeared in such indie faves as “Bubba Ho-Tep” and even directed the self-referential “My Name Is Bruce” before appearing in the short-lived USA Network crime series “Burn Notice.” He’s enjoying a new turn as Ash in the Starz show “Ash vs. Evil Dead.”
For the past five years, Reedus has played the temperamental zombie tracker Dylan Dixon in the Emmy Award-winning AMC series “The Walking Dead,” graduating from recurring cast member to regular by the show’s second season. Appearing Saturday and Sunday.
One of the comic book world’s most successful artists and illustrators, Conner has been working in the business since the late 1980s, when she worked for Archie and Marvel comics. More recently, she and husband Jimmy Palmiotti (who also will appear) spearheaded a new version of DC’s “Harley Quinn” series, with the former Batman supervillain being reimagined as more of an anti-heroine.
An Emmy winner for his work as the taciturn Lt. Martin Castillo in the 1980s detective show “Miami Vice,” Olmos scored an Academy Award nomination for his role in the fact-based 1989 drama “Stand and Deliver.” He secured his place in sci-fi lore as Commander William Adama in the relaunch of TV’s “Battlestar Galactica” (2004-09), and among comic book fans more recently in ABC’s “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” Appearing Saturday and Sunday.
For three seasons (2010-2013), Gillan starred as Amy Pond in the British TV series “Dr. Who” and gained notice as Nebula in the 2014 sci-fi adventure “Guardians of the Galaxy.” Appearing Saturday and Sunday.
Known first to British TV audiences for her appearance in “Being Human,” the Welsh-born Richards caught the attention of American viewers as Barbara Kean, James Gordon’s fiancée, in the FOX show “Gotham.” Appearing Saturday and Sunday.
With his breakout role as killer Dick Hickock in the 1967 film adaptation of Truman Capote’s “In Cold Blood,” Wilson cemented his place in movie history. He went on to appear in a range of TV and film roles, including the Louisiana-shot “Dead Man Walking,” and currently stars as family patriarch Hershel Greene in AMC’s “The Walking Dead.”