More than 40 stars of TV and the silver screen and more than 20 comic book artists will be in attendance at Fanboy Expo to be held at the Jacob Building in Chilhowee Park Oct 26-28.
The Fanboy Expo is the largest comic and toy exposition in the southeast. The expo features comic book artists including Matt Triano, Dennis Calero and many others. Among the TV stars that are attending are Richard Kiel, the 7’2 tall actor best remembered as the arch villain “Jaws” in the James Bond movies “Moon Raker” and “The Spy Who Loved Me” and numerous movies and TV series. Others that will attend are Lindsey Wagner best remembered as “The Bionic Woman”, stars from the “James Bond” movies, the “Friday the 13th” movies, the “Twilight” movies, wrestling legends and many more.
In a telephone interview Richard Kiel discussed his latest project, a novel he has co-written that he hopes to develop into a mini-series. The Book is “The True Story of Cassius Clay: Kentucky Lion.” The book was the result of more than 20 years of research on the Kentucky legislator who has been overlooked and wrongly maligned by public misinformation. Clay worked to abolish slavery by creating an abolitionist newspaper and worked to change the laws in an effort to bring an end to this “peculiar institution” as Thomas Jefferson referred to it.
During the War Between the States, Clay ran against Abraham Lincoln but eventually threw his support behind “Old Abe.”
The book has received rave reviews from a plethora of readers including former football Hall of Famer Rosie Grier who said “I started reading it and couldn’t put it down until I finished it.”
Kiel said he has got commitments from fellow actors to make cameo appearances including former “James Bond” star, Roger Moore and veteran actor George Kennedy.
“I would like to get Matthew McConaughey to play the part of Cassius Clay,” Kiel said. “He is a tremendous talent. We are currently looking to secure the funding for the movie. We are scouting locations.”
Clay’s life was controversial not only because of his stance on slavery, but a torrid affair that ended his 45-year marriage and stunned friends and colleagues. After divorcing his wife the 68-year-old Clay married his 15-year-old bride. The marriage was a short lived one. To the credit of the authors, Clay’s scandalous relationship was not omitted. Clay is depicted, in the words of Oliver Cromwell “Warts and all.” The authors did not shy away from revealing the darker side of Clay’s character.
“I wanted to be fair and balanced.” Kiel said. “There is good and bad in all of us. His wife kind of brought it on by refusing to accompany him to Russia.”
Kiel hopes that his work will help vindicate Clay and bring about a resurrection of his character in the eyes of historians and scholars.
Fans attending Fanboy Expo can meet their favorite stars and comic artists as well as purchase autographed photos and art work. Fans are invited to wear costumes to the event. Activities include question and answer sessions with the stars and artists.
For more information visit the web site at www.fanbaoyexpo.com.
By Michael Williams