UC San Diego alumni including Peter Robbins, the original voice of Charlie Brown and Ira Rubenstein, executive vice president of Marvel Entertainment, celebrated the kick off of Comic-Con Thursday, July 22 at LOUNGE six, a roof-top bar steps away from the convention.
The reception was hosted by UCSD Alumni Entertainment Alliance which is comprised of alumni working at all levels in television, film, music, theater, gaming, performing arts and media.
Attendees had a chance to network, celebrate Comic-Com and reconnect with their alma mater. Rubenstein of Marvel Entertainment, a world renowned entertainment company built on a library of more than 5,000 characters such as Iron Man, Spider Man and the Hulk is also president of the UCSD Alumni Association Board of Directors.
“The participation of UCSD alumni has doubled in the past two years,” Rubenstein said. “We’re working hard to get our alumni back and engaged.”
Robbins, class of ’79, who provided the voice of Charlie Brown in several Peanuts television specials and films which include “A Boy Named Charlie Brown,” “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” and a “Charlie Brown Christmas” had his picture taken with fans and signed autographs for fellow alumni.
“This event is an example of how Comic-Com is a great opportunity for people in the industry to meet and make connections,” Robbins said.
Another alumnus at the event was Mark Shulze, CEO and executive producer for the Crystal Pyramid Productions. Shulze has been attending Comic-Con for the past twenty years and has captured footage at the convention for TV shows such as “Extra” and “Entertainment Tonight.”
“The event has changed so much over the years,” he said. “It isn’t just about comic books anymore –– it’s one of the biggest entertainment events of the year.”
For this year’s convention Shulze’s company is working on a project for DreamWorks Animation.
Other attendees included past president of the Alumni Association, Martin Shapiro, who now works as an independent financial adviser.
“I think the growth of the Alliance, shows the growth of our alumni, we’re not just scientists; UC San Diego alumni are having a major impact on the world and are successful in various industries.”
Also in the crowd was actress Liane Alexandra Curtis, best known for her role as Randy, the best friend of Molly Ringwald’s character in “Sixteen Candles.” Curtis is the wife of Tim Mackenzie, class of 1978, an entertainment manager of Robbins and other celebrities.