×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Heroes emerge in catering to the nerd herd

Comic-Con 2012

In a bit of a twist, one of the biggest publicity stunts of this year’s San Diego Comic-Con could have come not during the convention, but in the days leading up to it.

With Jabba the Hutt’s luxurious sail barge forging the way, a massive relay of Star Wars fans walked from Santa Monica all the way to Comic-Con’s doorstep in San Diego, passing ceremonial lightsabers in place of batons along the way.

“I’m the psychopath who came up with the idea,” says Nerdist CEO Peter Levin of the event, a partnership with Lucasfilm dubbed “Course of the Force” and designed to raise money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation. “When I brought it up with (Nerdist founder) Chris Hardwick, he laughed.”

Such inspired fanboy brainstorming seems to define Nerdist Industries, an ever-growing multimedia empire catering to the passionate geek community. Formed by comedian Hardwick, who also hosts G4’s “Web Soup,” Nerdist counts a popular online site, 19 podcasts and a brand-new YouTube channel to its name. Hardwick credits much of the brand’s success to a recent partnership with Levin, who paid his dues at CAA and Disney.

Popular on Variety

“I don’t believe in astrology, but there was some astrological thing that happened when me and Peter met,” Hardwick says. “It’s given me infrastructure and a real business model.”

Whereas traditional media companies “don’t always represent nerd culture right,” according to Hardwick, the Nerdist crew addresses the pop-culture-savvy community on its own terms — which is one of the reasons Hardwick has been tapped to emcee five different panels at Comic-Con this year.

“There’s an idea of what it means to be a nerd: ‘Oh, they can’t talk to girls! They live in basements!’?” Hardwick says. “That’s all bullshit. There’s no marketing chart, no spreadsheet for this.”

Comic-Con 2012
Fanboy flight fight | Confab feeds smallscreen sect’s growing appetite | Heroes emerge in catering to the nerd herd
Return to Comic-Con main page

More Digital

  • Richie Mehta in Macao

    Richie Mehta Advances Macao Project 'The Price of Tea'

    After winning six prizes on Friday with his “Delhi Crime” series, Canadian-Indian director Richie Mehta is again making film project “The Price of Tea,” which was previously pitched in Macau, as his top priority. Having attended the International Film Festival & Awards Macao’s project market with “Tea” in 2017, Mehta is back this year on [...]

  • Billy Magnussen Aladdin

    'Aladdin' Spinoff With Billy Magnussen's Character in the Works for Disney Plus

    Disney is developing a spinoff of its live-action “Aladdin” with Billy Magnussen reprising his Prince Anders character. The unnamed project is in early development for the studio’s recently launched Disney Plus streaming service. Disney has hired Jordan Dunn and Michael Kvamme to write a script centered on the haughty Prince Anders, one of Princess Jasmine’s [...]

  • Bernie Sanders Trump win

    Bernie Sanders Vows to Break Up Comcast, Verizon & AT&T: 'Their Greed Must End'

    Vermont Senator and Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders unveiled plans to launch publicly-funded broadband networks and break up big internet providers like Comcast, Verizon and AT&T Thursday. “Their greed must end,” the Sanders campaign wrote in its high-speed internet policy proposal. The campaign argued that high-speed internet access should be treated as a public utility, [...]

  • The Office

    Streaming Wars Heat Up Rerun Market as New Services Stock Up on Hits

    In a year in which more than 500 scripted series are on the air and new streaming services seem to debut nearly monthly, some of the biggest money being thrown around for content has gone to a handful of old TV shows, the kind that for years have hummed along evening television without much fuss. [...]

  • The Irishman

    'The Irishman' Nabs 17.1 Million U.S. Viewers on Netflix in First Five Days, per Nielsen

    Martin Scorsese’s mafia saga “The Irishman” was watched by 17.1 million unique Netflix viewers in the U.S. in the first five days of its streaming release, according to Nielsen estimates. By comparison, Sandra Bullock-starrer “Bird Box” scored nearly 26 million U.S. viewers in its first seven days of availability (Dec. 21-27, 2018) on Netflix, according [...]

  • Amazon, HBO Max, Netflix Dish on

    Amazon, HBO Max, Netflix Dish on Their International Plans

    It’s different strokes for different streaming folks as Amazon, HBO Max and Netflix lifted the lid on their international plans in London this week. Amazon said it’s not in the volume game and talked up a select number of hyper-local shows, while Netflix dished on plans to rev up non-English-language originals. The message from HBO [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content