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'Comic Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope' screens in Columbus Thursday

Expect all the fun of Comic-Con -- without the awkwardness of making conversation with someone dressed in a too-tight Batman costume.

That's part of the appeal of "Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope," a film directed by Morgan Spurlock. He's the guy who gave us "Super Size Me."

The Comic-Con documentary plays in Columbus this week. It's rated PG-13. The screening event is 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Carmike Ritz 13 and includes an introduction before the film.

Tickets cost $9. You can reserve tickets in advance online -- click on this story at ledger-enquirer.com/sonya -- or purchase them at the box office beginning four hours before the screening.

The documentary comes to Columbus thanks to the efforts of 24-year-old Spencer Howard, who promoted it for Tugg: a website that's sort of like the online funding platform Kickstarter.

For the uninitiated, Comic-Con is a massive pop culture convention held annually in San Diego. It attracts a wide array of costumes, panel discussions and more.

Spurlock's Comic-Con documentary "explores this amazing cultural phenomenon by following the lives of five attendees as they descend upon the ultimate geek mecca at San Diego Comic-Con 2010," according to the film's official website. The documentary is presented by Stan Lee and Joss Whedon, the guy who created the TV series "Buffy the Vampire Slayer."

Among the spotlighted guests in the documentary: James, who hopes his girlfriend will say "yes" to his dramatic proposal at the event.

The four other featured attendees include a costume/creature designer, a comic book dealer, an amateur illustrator hoping to be discovered and an aspiring illustrator.

The trailer for "Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope" includes lines like, "Sit in my chair, let me make you look dead."

Actor Seth Rogen quips, "I was looking out my hotel room window and I saw three Ninja Turtles, really impatiently checking their watches."

Spencer Howard, the self-professed film fanatic who helped bring the Comic-Con documentary to Columbus, hopes to bring more community screenings to town, spanning multiple film genres. "I've been thrilled," he said of the response he's received for Thursday's event.

You can keep up with him and share your suggestions on his blog, available at lightscameralists.com.

Sonya Sorich, reporter, can be reached at ssorich@ledger-enquirer.com or 706-571-8516. Visit ledger-enquirer.com/sonya to read her work.

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