The Things You Don't

I was fooling around with Alta Vista's new image search engine when I came accross something that puzzeled me. It's a picture of a Wing Commander CCG Boxed Set -- something that, to my knowledge, never existed (maybe it died in the WC movie... *hurn*). The artwork is from the Heart of the Tiger promo card, and it appears to be marked 'ThunderCastle Games', a company which bought MagForce7 after the CCG came out...

The Things You Keep

Peter Telep kindly sent me a picture of the Pilgrim Stars cover... so here it is! Oh, if only God hads't not fixed his canon 'gainst new artwork -- but at least we'll get something new for the third book. Or maybe that sweet movie poster DA did that never got used. At least the new tagline is way cooler than the movie's...

Official WC Movie Magazine Winner

It comes as no surprise to me that one of the winners of the (Starlog Special Issue) Official Wing Commander Movie Magazine's jacket giveaway contest is an active member of the online WC community. From February through April 16 fans had the chance to send in a postcard and enter a contest for one of two jackets worn in the movie. Kurt Roithinger was the first winner we're aware of. He had the following to say in #Wingnut this afternoon.
I just got one of the WC movie crew jackets that Starlog was raffling off, in case anyone is interested. :) My significant other will get it. She's a huge WC fan. It'll make her month. :) It's not leather or satin. I kind of doubt it's gore-tex, though it look like it. It's the same stuff you see modern aviator jackets made of. It's reversible (turn it inside out and it's safety orange...), has 5 pockets and the WC movie logo over left breast and 'wing commander cast & crew luxembourg 1998' embroidered on the back. I also got a letter here (conveniently NOT addressed to me.. :) saying it's one of 2 they gave away.
Congratulations gren!

Just For Fun

Although no new Wing Commander product is expected to be unveiled at this year's convention, WC fans might want to check out ATFW's latest poll. This time they're asking what space sims people want covered most at E3.

Chris on Freelancer

Byydo reports that Sci Fi Wire currently has an article about Freelancer and its creator Chris Roberts. You can check out the article here. In Austin we saw some concept art for Freelancer, but were told that not much had been completed yet -- because Chris had been working on the movie. A lot of the plot elements and planned setup was spoken of, however, and it sounds like an excellent game...

Promote THIS

Someone was kind enough to mail me this advertisement for Wing Commander which was sent to theaters interested in showing the film. The funny thing, however, is the instructions on the back... read them below.
Promotional Possibilities

Tie-ins: Wing Commander ias based on the very popular CD ROM game by Origin and book by Harper Collins Publishing.

Tie in with your local electronic game store to cross promote the movie and the game. Offer the store one-sheets sniped with your playdate information to help create a Wing Commander display. Ask the store to offer a discount on the Wing Commander game when customers present the store with a Wing Commander ticket stub from your theatre. Take your tie-in one step further and offer a discount on concession items when patrons purchase a Wing Commander ticket and present their receipt from your tie-in partner.

Tie in with your local bookstore to cross promote the movie and the book. Offer the store one-sheets sniped with your playdate information to help create a Wing Commander display. Ask the store to offer a discount on the Wing Commander book when customers present the store with a Wing Commander ticket stub from your theatre. Take your tie-in one step further and offer a discount on concession items when patrons purchase a Wing Commander ticket and present their receipt from your tie-in partner.

In-theatre: Decorate your lobby with Wing Commander one-sheets. Ask your tie-in partners to donate Wing Commander CD ROM games and books for display in your lobby. Hold a drawing opening night for a Wing Commander prize package including a one-sheet, CD ROM game and book.

Use old computer equiptment and other high tech items to simulate a spaceship command center. Have theater staff dress up in Wing Commander type uniforms complete with space helmets.

Set up computer stations in your lobby on opening night loaded with the Wing Commander CD ROM game. Hold a Wing Commander game-off. Give prizes donated from your tie-in partners to the champions.

More Contents

I've finally gotten the last part of the full Wing Commander press kit -- the set of slides I promised I'd report on earlier. It contains 12 slides, a carrying sheet and a sheet listing their descriptions, hence transcribed...
1. Freddie Prinze Jr. (wearing helmet) plays a hotshot space pilot with incredible navicational skills in Wing Commander.
2. (L-R) Matthew Lillard, Freddie Prinze Jr. and Tcheky Karyo prepare for battle in Wing Commander.
3. Freddie Prinze Jr. (left) holds injured buddy Matthew Lillard in Wing Commander.
4. Freddie Prinze Jr. hunts the enemy in Wing Commander.
5. Wing Commander Saffron Burrows enjoys a rare moment of relaxation in Wing Commander.
6. Wing Commander Saffron Burrows gives a stirring speech to members of her squadron in Wing Commander.
7. Tcheky Karyo stars as Paladin in Wing Commander.
8. Jurgen Prochnow stars as Gerald in Wing Commander.
9. David Warner stars as Tolwyn in Wing Commander.
10. State-of-the-art, computer generated special effects are used to depict an epic space battle in Wing Commander.
11. State-of-the-art, computer generated special effects are used to depict an epic space battle in Wing Commander.
12. Director Chris Roberts on the Wing Commander set.

A Modest Proposal

Peter Telep posted to the newsgroup with the below request... if you've read Wing Commander head on over to Amazon and review it! Speaking of Peter Telep, his official site seems to have been updated... keen! Does anyone know whether or not Descent: Stealing Thunder is in stores yet?
If you've read the book and haven't done so, I'd really appreciate you going to Amazon.com and writing a short review. Thanks!

Peter Telep

CGW Follows Crowd!

No, it's not a bad Derek Smart joke... here's Computer Gaming World's mention of Wing Commander...
The Ugly

Wing Commander Movie: Yikes. Okay, so we weren't expecting Citizen Kane or Star Wars Episode 1 anyway, but this steaming pile isn't even rental-worthy. Memo to game designers. Stick to computer games.

They also mention the large Wing Commander article they did for Gamespot...
This movie is probably already on video, but you can hear how Chris Roberts justified this "experiment" and read a retrospective of the entire Wing Commander series.

Waxing Nostalgic

I'd like to thank everybody who's emailed me wondering where I am/if I'm okay/wishing me happy birthday/etc... I've been unable to update for a while due to work and being fairly sick... but I'm back now! Thanks!

Merchandise FAQ

I'm currently seeking help from Wing Commander collectors to complete work compiling a list of information regarding all the various Wing Commander products. If you're interested in helping, give me a yell at loaf@wcnews.com.

Money

In its 7th week in release Wing Commander made $37,733 while showing on 109 screens. This, making more money than it made last week and showing on more screens, placed it at #61 at the box office for this last weekend.

More Exact DVD Release Date

Craig McDonald pointed us at The Digital Bits. Their rumor mill section reports July 13 as the tentative release date for the WC movie DVD. You can check it out for yourself here. She's All That DVD, also starring Freddie Prinze and Matthew Lillard, is scheduled to be released that day as well. I can't wait. The movie'll look great next to my WC4 DVD. One of these days I'll actually have to get a DVD drive though..

San Francisco Fans Of Lillard

If you're in San Francisco today and want to try to get an autograph of Matthew Lillard (Maniac in the WC movie), check out SLC Punk! at the Film Festival. MatthewLillard.com had this news update.
SLC PUNK! at the San Francisco Film Festival on Saturday (4/24) at 11 pm. James Merendino and Matthew Lillard will do interviews and sign posters/comic books/etc. at the festival!

Peculiar Banner Link

While checking ATFW this afternoon a certain banner link caught my eye. Ultimate Gaming Zero is using the banner below as its UGO link. The banner features an Excalibur (specifically a picture of the Excalibur released after WC4) being destroyed. Incidentally, after a cursory glance around the UGZ site I didn't see anything Wing Commander (or space sim for that matter) related.

The Numbers In The Sixth Week

Fortunately Wing Commander takes a smaller dip this week than last.
Dist.Weekend
Gross
Cumulative
Gross
Release
Weeks
Number of
Theaters
66 Wing Commander FOX $27,922 $11,431,590 6 103
She's All That, also starring Freddie Prinze and Matthew Lillard, is holding at 64 this weekend. I must be pretty lucky if it's only showing in a hundred theaters across the continent and one of them is ten minutes from my house.

Trivia Notice

The new Week 22 Trivia Questions are out, however if you sent your answers in during the second half of last week you may not have gotten a score yet. Week 21 Trivia is now over, the Scoreboard will be updated within a day or so with the results. You can find Week 22 Trivia here. On a slightly related note, our @wcnews.com emails are up. Thanks Kevin. And Happy Birthday LOAF.

Tentative Release Date - Work In Progress

We've been informed that a Fox mailing list reports July 2 as the probable release date for the WC Movie in the United Kingdom. Hades and LOAF are working to confirm that and will report back soon. In other news, some people have had trouble reaching us through the @wcnews.com email addresses in the last couple days. If you need to get ahold of us, you can always reach us at our ace-1.com addresseshere.

Mailing List For European Meeting

Kris sent us this note about the possible European WC Movie "Convention" this summer.
I've set up a mailing list at Onelist. People that want to be kept up to date on the latest news about the WC movie meeting can subscribe to it. Only I can send mail to everyone on the list, so people's mailboxes won't get cluttered.
You can subscribe to the mailing list (I would recommend it) at http://www.onelist.com/viewarchive.cgi?listname=wcmovie

Directory Up To Date

We've finally added the last of the Fan Directory submissions that have been received over the past month. If you have sent a profile to be added and it's not in the Directory, please resend it. You can find the Directory and related information here.

Many! Exclamation! Marks!

The CIC's very own Chris Reid is the star in the latest Lanced.net interview and of course the subject is our beloved WC with a side order of Starlancer/Freelancer and CIC questions. CIC accepts no responsibility for any damage caused by the excessive use of exclamation marks in the interview, and no, Chris doesn't normally add !s to the end of every sentence. Now the disclaimer is out of the way, read the interview here.

You Wont Believe This!

If you had any doubts about upcoming Wing Commander products, this one will blow you away. I'll let the press release (off Internet Wire) explain. Thanks to ATFW.
LOS ANGELES, CA -- (INTERNET WIRE) -- 04/14/99 -- Showscan Entertainment Inc. (OTC BB: SHOW) Wednesday announced plans to produce two new simulation thrill ride films, "Wing Commander" and "Street Fighter II - The Ride."

These productions are the first in history to fully utilize convergent media that crosses a variety of entertainment forms including video games, theatrical films and now simulation adventures.

"Consumers want to 'live' through movies and games. By making simulation thrill ride films based on recognizable brand name games and theatrical films, Showscan is leading the way in bringing together all of the critical, exciting and visual elements of entertainment today," said Dennis Pope, president and chief executive officer of Showscan.

"With the addition of these two titles, the thrill-seeking public will not only be able to play the game and see the movie, they will be able to experience the excitement firsthand. In essence, we are providing consumers with the interactive experiences they desire."

Pope added: "These new rides will add real brand name power to the Showscan library. They are key elements in the continuing development and implementation of our core business strategy to raise the bar of quality and excitement, to set new standards in simulation attractions and to create the largest and best simulation film library in the world."

In the first of the two productions, Showscan has formed Wing Commander Simulation Co., a partnership with executive producers George Wade and Alan Cole Ford to acquire the ride film rights to "Wing Commander." Based on the hit computer game series and the Digital Anvil/No Prisoners film of the same title released earlier this year by 20th Century Fox, the ride will take audiences into futuristic outer space combat.

"Wing Commander" has sold more than 9 million CD Rom games worldwide and is one of the top franchises in the computer game genre. Cole Ford said, "We believe this will add a whole new dimension to the Wing Commander franchise extending it far beyond its core game playing audience."

Digital Anvil's chief executive officer, Chris Roberts, who directed the "Wing Commander" feature film and created the game, said: "The Showscan ride is yet another evolutionary step for `Wing Commander.' We are thrilled about the opportunity to truly put audiences in the front seat of `Wing Commander''s spectacular action."

The partnership is currently in negotiations with several top effects and CGI companies in the film industry to round out the "Wing Commander" production team. Showscan, which will serve as producer and distributor of the ride, expects to release "Wing Commander" in January 2000.

I know where I'm going on vacation every summer for the next ten years..

Wouldn't You Be Happy To Make $54k In A Weekend?

Dist.Weekend
Gross
Cumulative
Gross
Release
Weeks
Number of
Theaters
54 Wing Commander FOX $53,927 $11,385,523 5 173

As a bit of trivia here, the #53 ranked movie over the weekend, Enemy of the State, was the movie I watched on the airplane during my flight to Austin.

More Tests

LOAF will be offline for a couple days. He's at the hospital undergoing some, as far as I know, fairly routine tests. If you'd like to wish him well, you can reach him at loaf@wcnews.com.

The Big One

Hadrian has finally wrapped up editing on the fourth installment of the CIC Infoburst. Chris Roberts talks to the CIC about the Wing Commander series and gaming business in general, the movie and his upcoming games, including the Star/Freelancer series. It's pretty big, eight megabytes, but this is not one to miss. You need RealPlayer to listen to it. Also, to prevent any slowdown to the main CIC server, our friends at KillerBees are mirroring it. We'll provide our own local links in a day or two. Check Infoburst #4 out at the Infoburst page here.

Movie Fun In Europe

Okay, so we non-Americans can't see the movie yet but when we can, why not make the best of it? Kris is organising a little meeting in the South of UK (exact location to be decided) for any WC fans who want to come so we can all see the movie together. Planning is in very early stages, but if you are interested in tagging along, mail Kris for more details as soon as there are any.

Digital Video Distress

Apparently the all consuming DVD.com listed Wing Commander DVD for a Junejuly release as of yesterday. Unfortunately the listing has since disappeared, and no further word on the topic has come out... stay tuned.

Blairticle

Freddie Prinze Jr.com posted this article about the ongoing Old Blair vs. New Blair debate. Check it out... it's from the March 2nd Hoosier Times.
Freddie Prinze Jr. is the new Mark Hamill. Kind of. In the upcoming sci-fi movie Wing Commander, opening March 12, Prinze plays rebellious pilot Christopher Blair, the role the Star Wars icon essayed in the CD-ROM series of games on which the movie is loosely based.

Prinze, the red-hot star of the recent hit She's All That and son of the late comedian Freddie Prinze, admits that stepping into Hamill's boots caused him some serious grief.

"People started a controversy on the Internet," says the personable, energetic Prinze during a conversation at a Manhattan hotel. "People wanted to kill me because Hamill was Blair in the game, and suddenly he wasn't Blair anymore.

"I tried to explain to people, 'This is NOT an issue. Blair is 22 years old in the movie, and they just can't have Hamill do it.' Hamill is not 22, and he doesn't look 22.

"People were saying, 'You have big shoes to fill.' I did, but I wasn't going to do Mark Hamill playing Blair. He did his thing, and I'm doing my thing," Prinze says.

"Hopefully, that's how it will be received and, hopefully, the loyal fans of the game won't assassinate me."

The movie's plot: Blair carries with him knowledge of an impending invasion by an alien threat called the Kilrathi, and he teams with mates Maniac (Matthew Lillard), Deveraux (Saffron Burrows) and their commander (Tcheky Karyo) to marshal the forces of the Confederation and battle the Kilrathi.

"I was a huge fan of the game, but the film is basically World War II set 700 years from now," says Prinze, 22, whose other credits include I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997) and its sequel (1998), The House of Yes (1998) and Sparkler, a soon-to-be-released dark comedy in which he co-stars with Jamie Kennedy, Park Overall and Veronica Cartwright.

"Wing Commander all takes place in space, on these giant ships that are like submarines. It's very Das Boot'-ish, and (Das Boot star) Jurgen Prochnow is in the movie. He plays another commander and he hates me because I'm half-Pilgrim."

Half-Pilgrim?

"Imagine if Nazi Germany still existed and America had to team up with Nazi Germany to fight a common foe. There would be a lot of bad blood.

"In the movie, the Pilgrims were completely destroyed by the Confederation, which is basically Earth, and I'm half-Pilgrim. When everybody finds out about that there's this mad racism going on, and Jurgen's character, who was in the Pilgrim Wars, hates me."

Directed by Chris Roberts, who devised the CD-ROM games, Commander boasts more than 300 special effects shots (many of them digitally produced), a production design courtesy of Titanic's Peter Lamont and a cast that also includes David Warner as Adm. Tolwyn.

Ironically, Warner assumed his role after Malcolm McDowell, who played Tolwyn in the games and shared the screen with Warner in Time After Time (1979), passed due to his commitment to the recently canceled television series "Fantasy Island."

"We ended up making a really cool, character-driven movie," says Prinze, who's open to the idea of a sequel and looks forward to the avalanche of Commander tie-in merchandise, which includes action figures and a licensed magazine, jewelry and posters. "It's not silly sci-fi crap.

"The two kinds of movies I had to make before I died were a sci-fi movie and a war movie. Actually, I still have to be in a boxing movie and a Western before I die." Prinze laughs, then adds to his wish list.

"I also have to play a superhero before I die, and then I'll be happy. So, Wing Commander took care of two of my dreams at once."

Demon Image with Removal Sharp Tooth?

Justin Bielawa again reports in on the Pilgrim Cross, saying that its switchblade may be removable -- so as to prevent people from hurting themselves while wearing it as a cross and such... this is good news for those of us wanting to wear the cross where such weapons aren't allowed.

Pilgrim Stars Release Date

Peter Telep reports that his Wing Commander: Pilgrim Stars is slated for publication in October, 1999 -- which means that it should be in our hands in September! In other Peter Telep related news, Amazon reports that Descent: Stealing Thunder is shipping now -- I've been too busy to get to a bookstore, but I'll let you know if I find it...

Wallpaper Redux

I'm not sure what Hadrian was talking about yesterday, but as far as I can tell there's nothing wrong with the cool wallpaper that was posted yesterday. It's several variations on the Confederation logo, and it makes a nice windows image (with space for the icons and such). Here it is again.

Backgroundage

Bored with your current Windows background? Well now, thanks to Ed Scott, you can download some more to choose from. Get your zip containing both BMP and JPG versions here.

Crusty Slimebags

Of course you can think of a better taunt than that, so thank Popsicle Pete, author of SOtaunt, that you can replace the taunts in WCP with your own. And who would guess that the program is called WCPtaunt? Not I.. anyhow, you can download a copy here.

It's So Big

WC editing wizard HCl has released yet another amazing patch. Have you ever wanted to see how the [insert favorite WCP/SO capship here] compares to the Behemoth? Now you can with this patch! The only setback is you'll need to create your own mission to view it properly, but hey, ask nicely in the Chat Zone and maybe someone will make one for you.

Selling Well

Well it's on to week four of the WC Movie's battle against other big movie hits this past weekend. And coming in at number 23 this week is..
Dist.Weekend
Gross
Cumulative
Gross
Release
Weeks
Number of
Theaters
23 Wing Commander FOX $365,913 $11,236,859 4 498

Traileriffic

Yes, I know "Traileriffic" isn't a word, anyway, of course you are eager to see more of the WC movie whether you haven't seen it yet or you just wonder about the scenes that were cut. Well then this is for you.. a three minute long WC preview that was made long ago.. long before scenes were cut. Yes, that means that little bits of this preview were cut from the movie. You can download this masterpiece here.

Comprehensive Chris Roberts Interview

Games On Line has an interview with Chris Roberts available. It jumps around with questions regarding topics from Origin to Digital Anvil to the WC Movie to upcoming DA games. You can find the interview here. It's the usual stuff for the most part. Thanks to Dan's and Andy Devendorf.

Happy Easter!

If you celebrate it this weekend, Happy Easter! If not, maybe at least you're lucky enough to get an Easter Break. Some people have to wait until Spring Break in a few weeks.

In Case You Missed Us Earlier..

Since we've had a couple questions, I thought I'd provide another link to our report on the trip to Austin last month. You can find the Premiere Report here. Since the original news Update announcing it, I've added a couple minor comments of my own.

Kilrathi on the Move

As one might expect, the CIC wasn't the only site with stupid April 1st updates. Check out Dan's! The best, however, has to be Ultima Online's official news site... check out this news article and accompanying pictures... for those who don't recognize it, that ship was the Salthi in Super Wing Commander which was later sold as scrap to religious zealots in Rightous Fire.
Britannia is in a panic! Early this morning, the sky darkened as a group of steel like birds descended upon the land. Like huge, terrible, flying dragons, the huge birds shoot fire from their gaping mouths at humans, creatures, and buildings without discrimination.

I stood paralyzed when I first saw these mammoth beasts. I was minding my own affairs, handling my resources at the bank when the horrible monstrosity came near me. Some of the more veteran warriors and magicians near me charged towards the ferocious animal and attempted to use their high arts to conquer it. They thought this was nothing more than a new variety of monster, as yet undiscovered, and easily destroyed.

They were woefully mistaken. I watched in horror as the mighty ones fell all around me while the fire breathing steel bird still swooped about, doing damage to all in its path. Finally, my wits about me, I turned on heel and ran for the protection of my friend's house nearby, narrowly escaping the same fate of the fighters.

From the safety of the house, I quickly penned this report, and I hope to find eventually find a cryer to whom I can deliver the news, so that they might warn the other cities and villages of the attack. All seems in chaos, and I fear the worst. But if you are reading this, then perhaps my message has found its way into good hands. For this, I can only pray. And that we might have some brave souls who can defend us against this enemy.

Watch the skies! Beware! These huge birds may be those that are called Kilrathi, a mysterious race that only the wisest of sages are privy to. Written about in the ancient tomes, and prophesied of in the most secret of scrolls, the Kilrathi are said to be a race from beyond the skies, from between the stars. Most of the educated scholars who have heard of them, believed them to be fairy stories, conjured to frighten the young ones. But by the virtues, today I believe, and I warrant by the end of today, so shall all of you.

Go in peace, and may the virtues keep you safe.

Samuel Mekings

Cpl Hades Enjoys Nickname, Loves England

"I really, really like being called 'NutBoy'," Barrie Almond announced today, "It's really better than that whole 'Hades' thing. Plus, it pokes fun at my amusing last name!" Almond added: "Oh, and I really like England, too. We may have to wait for the movie to come out here, but can you Americans claim to be the place they made Privateer 2? I didn't think so..."

'Hadrian' Pronounced Correctly

Researchers at Oxford University have announced that after a ten year research program, they have finally determined the proper way to pronounce 'Hadrian'. "A lot of people say 'heyydrian' or 'haadrian' which just isn't right," said Dr. Kevin Snickel, lead researcher. "We'll be announcing our findings very soon, but I can assure you they will both shock and amaze." Longtime agwc harasser Mike Berdos berated the university for its failure to fully integrate proper throttle controls.

LOAF, Byydo Meet Girls

According to today's Variety, Bandit (LOAF) and Byydo have actually had a normal conversation with members of the opposite sex. Says LOAF: "Wow, I never thought I'd ever meet a girl who shared my interest in Wing Commander trivia. Can you name five people who have commanded the Tiger's Claw? I didn't think so..." Added Byydo, "I've always been self conscious of the fact that I'm actually a dark spider creature, but she saw the real me through my hard chittinous exoskeleton and crab like pincer appendages."

The Place to Be

This week's issue of Time Magazine has named comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.space-sim "the best place to chat about space games!" When reached for comment, longtime posters announced that they were very happy about this announcement as that it means that there will be lots of new fans to flame Battlecruiser 3000 creator Derek Smart.

Reid to Media: "That Movie Sucked"

At a recent press conference called by Chris "Crid" Reid, he told the associated press: "I'm sorry about everything I've said -- the movie sucked. Freddie Prinze Jr. was awful in his role, they should have used Mark Hamill! He played a 20 year old in Star Wars, 20 years ago, so it makes sense to me that he can play a 20 year old today." Reid went on to rant about the low quality of the special effects, the cheap hole-ridden plot and the awful changes to the established universe. Reid himself summed it all up best: "In conclusion, I'm really, really sorry I ever suggested that anybody ever go see 'She's All That'."

CIC Welcomes New Staff Member

We at the CIC are proud to announce that a new member has joined the staff! Dan Hardwicke, or 'Akkbar' as he likes to be known, will be in charge of not updating anything, refusing to add new subsections and picking fights with other WC fans. Says CIC staffer ace-1: "It was really a tough call. It was a choice between either Akkbar or Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic. And, as it turned out, Akkbar had more experience with the Wing Commander Universe... go figure!"

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