Comic-Con crowds line up for hours for big names, exclusive merchandise

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — Comic-Con International opened Thursday to Halle Berry chugging whiskey, reminiscences from the cast of "Teen Wolf” and relatively light crowds in the San Diego Convention Center’s major ballrooms.

Berry was part of a panel discussion with fellow cast members from the upcoming film, "Kingsman: The Golden Circle,” when she drank from a large glass of whisky while egged on by fans and playfully dropped to the stage.

Others in the cast imbibed from shot glasses.

"Why do I have this much and why do they have that much, is what I want to know,” Berry said before the audience chanted "Chug.”

"I can, you know,” the actress said before she downed the liquor.

Berry portrays a technical expert in the sequel to 2014’s "Kingsman: The Secret Service.” The cast includes Colin Firth, Jeff Bridges, Taron Egerton and Channing Tatum, among others. The series is based on the comic book "The Secret Service.”

The cast of "Teen Wolf” gathered for a sometimes emotional panel with the MTV series’ final 10 episodes set to begin airing on July 30. Some reports this week said the series could continue on MTV as a podcast.

Actor Tyler Posey said he’d been acting for a dozen years before he gained the lead role in the show, which debuted in 2011 and is loosely based on the 1985 movie of the same name.

"I felt like going into it, it was never going to be a job, there was so much incentive for me to enjoy what I was doing,” Posey said. "It wasn’t just work — it was friendship — and finding my purpose in life and becoming an adult and making a difference.”

Comic-Con, the annual celebration of the popular arts, will run through Sunday at the convention center, Central Library, Hilton Bayfront Hotel, the Horton Grand Theatre and the Marriott Marquis Hotel and Marina. The event, with sessions running from 10 a.m. to midnight, will be attended by 130,000 people.

While attendance was as high as usual, surprisingly few people made the trek into the largest venues, 6,500-seat Hall H and Room 20, according to numerous tweets.

That should change Friday, which is highlighted by a "Game of Thrones” panel.

Also on tap for Hall H Friday are a 10th-anniversary panel on "The Big Bang Theory,” along with panels on "The Walking Dead,” "Fear the Walking Dead,” "Twin Peaks,” "Preacher” and Marvel’s "The Defenders.”

Among other things to look for, the San Diego Blood Bank will conduct a blood drive Thursday through Sunday at the Manchester Grand Hyatt, Coronado Ballroom, located at One Market Place. Donors will receive an exclusive Guardians of the Galaxy T-shirt.

Related Link: Comic-Con annual blood drive returns for 41st year

UC San Diego took advantage of the huge crowds by promoting its recent scientific discoveries. The university’s "Science Nonfiction” campaign includes trolley advertising, billboards, posters, t-shirts and street teams wearing sandwich-boards and aluminum foil hats.

Outside the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel, the FX networks is offering interactive experiences based on their programming, while AMC is hosting its "Deadquarters” at the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade, across Harbor Drive from the convention center.

With wall-to-wall people at Comic-Con venues and the adjacent Gaslamp Quarter, organizers strongly suggest using public transportation.

A free shuttle bus service is operating 24 hours a day, stopping at 63 locations in downtown, Mission Valley, Harbor Island and Shelter Island through Sunday evening.

Related Link: MTS extends trolley service for Comic-Con 2017

The Metropolitan Transit System announced that Green Line trolleys will run every 7 and 1/2 minutes between Qualcomm Stadium and the 12th and Imperial Transit Center through Sunday. Blue and Orange line trains will increase in frequency during peak travel times, according to the MTS.

The transit agency said passengers can use its new Compass Cloud mobile app to purchase ride tickets in advance. The MTS also has 22 bus routes with downtown stops.

Categories: Local San Diego News, San Diego Comic-Con 2017