FanFest – The Ultimate Spy and Sci-Fi Event

Fan Fest: The Ultimate Spy and Sci-Fi Event
London Film Museum
24th and 25th April 2010

Last weekend saw the inaugural FanFest event take place at the London Film Museum st London’s County Halls near Westminster. Dubbed the ultimate spy and sci-fi event, FanFest featured a wide variety of guests – from actors and actresses that had appeared in numerous Bond films over the years to special effects luminaries such as Bill Pearson and Bob Keen, as well as the legend that is Ray Harryhausen.

We had the privilege of being invited to attend the event which combined guests signings, a tour of the London Film Museum, special events and some superb guest talks in the museum’s hallowed debating chamber.

The museum itself is a joy to walk round. A distinguished old building filled with memorabilia and props from numerous films and numerous genres, there really is something for literally everyone to enjoy. Off all the items on show, the highlights for me included the glave from Krull, the original Blade costume, and a giant killer bunny rabbit. There was also a superb recreation of the corridor from the opening of Star Wars, complete with C3P0 and R2-D2, within which you could have your photo professionally taken.

With rooms given over to signing areas, James Bond fans were in heaven, with many an attendee proclaiming “I’ve been a fan of yours since I was a kid”. That must have made some guests feel old! All the guests were in high spirits, with smiles and a friendly greeting for everyone, which made for a really good atmosphere throughout. There were also rooms filled with activities for kids young and old – including  a spy school and a drawing class.

The real highlight of the weekend for me were the guest talks in the museum’s debating chamber. Two of the cunmissable talks in my opinion were from Bob Keen – the SFX guru who work includes Star Wars, Hellraiser, Alien, Dog Soldiers (from which he brought a prop werewolf head), and Waxwork amongst many others – and the legendary model maker and stop motion king Ray Harryhausen (Clash of the Titans, The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, Jason and the Argonauts).

Overall FanFest was a huge success and I look forward to the announced opening of the special Ray Harryhausen exhibit in June, and next year’s event…

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