“You’ve see a lot of CG, a lot of 3D, aren’t you ready to see a movie that makes you want to go to the gym?”
That’s how Ain’t It Cool News editor Harry Knowles started Lionsgate’s panel for “The Expendables” on Thursday toward the end of a packed day of studio panels.
“I’m going to represent estrogen on the panel,” he quipped.
He was talking to a crowd that has wanted to see “The Expendables” since it was announced, given its assemblage of action icons like Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis, Dolph Lundgren, “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, Terry Crews and Randy Couture who were on hand in San Diego to tubthump the film.
The room of 6,000 chanted “Rocky” as Stallone took the stage.
As one fan put during a Q&A session, “You guys all together are responsible for my upbringing, even more than my parents.”
Jason Statham, Mickey Rourke and Jet Li weren’t available to attend.
Stallone talked to Jean Claude Van Damme, Steven Segal and Chuck Norris to co-star in the film, but there are circumstances “like insanity” that prevent things from happening, he said.
The panel focused on the brutality of the realistic nature of the fight sequences in the film.
“When the writer, director and lead actor, tells you to kick the shit out of them, you do it,” Austin said, referring to Stallone’s role.
Stallone considered filming the movie in 3D but said it would have seemed like a gimmick.
A documentary was also produced catching what it’s like to make an action film and paying repeat visits to the hospital, which became an ongoing on set joke.
The film lensed in Brazil, which gave producers the freedom to shoot more aggressive fight sequences, work with more dangerous firearms and destroy property. “You can blow the country up and they say, “Thank you and here’s a monkey to take back home with you.'”
Stallone said he prefers directing to acting because “I’m a complete power freak,” he said.
Upon leaving, the thesps were given a standing ovation at the end of the panel, a rare occurrence at the Con.