Last weekend I went to AwesomeCon here in DC. Some parts of it were great! Like this Q&A with Dave Bautista that I’m about to tell you about! Some parts were less great like the part where I got a massive migraine mid-afternoon on Saturday that sent me home instead of to the John Boyega Q&A that night. BUT! I was able to get back on Sunday morning and this is what I learned:
- Dave Bautista is, overall, a delightful human being. Really, just seemed sweet, funny, engaging, earnest, and so grateful for the things he’s been able to do. I know some of this could just be celebrity B.S but it didn’t come off as polished patter. Just who he is.
- You know how a lot of celebrities look smaller in person? This is 100% not true of Dave Bautista. Even about 100ft back from the stage, I could tell that he was a massive human being. This was only enhanced whenever other human beings of more normal sizes stood in close proximity to him.
- To this day he still gets recognized for his time as a wrestler more than as a movie star. He, personally, is not surprised by this because he points out that he was on TV worldwide about once a week for ten years. He’s also still friends with Chris Jericho, Rey Misterio, and some other wrestlers.
- He is from D.C! I did not know this, but he grew up in Southeast DC which was a pretty rough neighborhood when he lived there. He still has family in the city and comes back to visit, so I need to keep my eyes peeled when I’m out and about.
- When he was growing up he was an introverted DC Comics fan, in his words “the weird kid who was obsessed with Aquaman. He still thinks of himself as a geek and says he surprises people at Cons because he tends to ask a lot of detailed questions about costumes.
- He says one word in the movie Spectre but still had to come back to do ADR for that line because apparently the way he said “Shit” was “too distinctly American.” He had to go in and record it in different accents so they could pick whichever one they preferred for the final version.
- When Sean Gunn — who played Rocket on set — came out to the panel, Bautista praised his work and said he gave everyone so much to work with, and that Sean is “one of my favorite people in the world.” It was very neat to see them together and they had a really great, friendly energy.
- James Gunn contributed to the Guardians scenes in Infinity War to help make sure they kept the same tone. The Russo Brothers weren’t interested in changing the established dynamic. That is the only thing he mentioned about Infinity War.
And after all of that, we learned that Michael Rooker will not show up to a Q&A without totally taking it over. That was pretty delightful in its own way.