July 23, 2014 9:30am PT by Marc Bernardin, Lesley Goldberg
Comic-Con: See Chris Hardwick as Marty McFly From 'Back to the Future' (Video)
This story first appeared in the Aug. 1 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
Comic-Con's most valuable emcee -- he's moderated panels like The Walking Dead and Marvel -- also is the host of Comedy Central's Emmy-nominated game show @midnight. And Hardwick, 42, is the mastermind behind the Nerdist podcast -- which has welcomed A-listers such as Tom Hanks, Tina Fey and Thomas Tull (whose Legendary Pictures is the parent company of Hardwick's Nerdist Industries).
What was your first Hall H panel like as a moderator?
It was the one where there was the stabbing a couple years ago. It was for the movie Paul. We were about to go on -- me and Sigourney Weaver and Simon Pegg and Nick Frost -- and they go, "OK, everyone back up to the green room. There was a stabbing." And we're like, "What? Was it a mace?" "No, it was a mechanical pencil." Like, of course it was a mechanical pencil.
Your most surreal Comic-Con moment?
I don't process it during Comic-Con, but the Monday or Tuesday after, it's like, "Holy shit. I met Harrison Ford. Did Tom Cruise and I sing a Foreigner song in Hall H? I dreamt that, right?" The green room for Hall H is insane. "There's Daniel Craig talking to Harrison Ford. There's Ian McKellen; Sigourney Weaver just walked in, and there are five more of the most famous people in one room."