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The second weekend in June is devoted to the legendary character that stands for "Truth, Justice and the American Way" each year in Metropolis, Illinois. But Superman is always kind enough to share the spotlight with a few other celebrities.
Special guests have just been confirmed as headliners of the 32nd annual Superman Celebration June 10-13. Smallville fans will be excited to see this year's celebrity line-up.
Laura Vandervoort, who portrays Supergirl/Kara and Sam Witwer, also known as Doomsday, will be the Smallville actors headlining this year's Celebration. And, the "First Lady of Metropolis" Noel Neill, is scheduled to make a return trip to the festival. Fans will have the opportunity to meet the celebrities in person at autograph and question and answer sessions.
Following her stint as a regular on Smallville, Vandervoort acted in the pilot for ABC's new series V. The pilot was picked up and she began shooting in August 2009 for the TV series which debuted in November.
Vandervoort was born in 1984 in Toronto, Canada and begin acting at the age of 13. A tomboy for years, she was involved in several sports and earned a second degree Black Belt by the age of 16. After taking several classes and doing background work on Canadian shows such as Road to Avonlea and Harriet the Spy she got her first speaking role in Canadian children's series Goosebumps and Are You Afraid of the Dark?
After commercials and guest stars in Mutant-X, Prom Queen, Twice in a Lifetime, Doc, Sue Thomas FBI, Troubled Waters, Dresdan Files and a few Disney movies of the week, she landed the lead role of Sadie Harrison on the CTV TV series Instant Star.
In 2006 Laura shot her first feature titled The Lookout with Jeff Daniels. Several of her TV appearances, including CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, led Laura into the hands of the CW network and Smallville. Following Smallville, Laura shot the sequel to the feature film Into The Blue titled Into the Blue 2: The Reef. Following The Reef, Laura went directly into filming an independent production titled The Jazzman and then a TV movie titled Out of Control. Since shooting a gritty independent film, Damage, Laura shot a science fiction miniseries, the SyFy channel's relaunching of Philip Josť Farmer's Riverworld.
Sam Witwer grew up in Glenview, Illinois, outside of Chicago. He attended Glenbrook South High School, where he was involved in drama and theater classes, as well as being the lead singer of a high school band. He attended the Julliard School of Drama before heading to Los Angeles to pursue his acting career. His first major film role was as Wayne Jessup in The Mist.
In 2008, Witwer was cast to play Doomsday, the new rival of Superman on Smallville's eighth season after Michael Rosenbaum, who played the superhero's arch-enemy, Lex Luthor, left the show. He is also known to audiences for his recurring roles as Lieutenant Alex "Crashdown" Quartararo on the popular series Battlestar Galactica and Neil Perry on the Showtime series Dexter. A sci-fi fan growing up, he was happy to have landed a minor guest roll on Star Trek: Enterprise. His other television credits include guest appearances on Bones, Star Trek: New Voyages, Navy NCIS, Dragnet, Cold Case, TAG, and ER.
A lifetime Star Wars fan, Sam appeared as Darth Vader's secret apprentice, Starkiller/Galen Marek and as Darth Sidious, in the massively successful multimedia project Star Wars: The Force Unleashed. Witwer provided both his voice and likeness to the lead characters across all of the mediums. He reprised his role as Galen Marek in the video game: Soulcalibur IV. There is also speculation that he will reprise his role of Starkiller for the Star Wars live-action TV series.
Witwer says that his first love is music and he is consequently the lead singer of his own band, The Crashtones. The bank released its first CD entitled "Colourful of the Stereo" in 2006. Witwer has since assembled a live line-up consisting of professional musicians and others in the industry, including Its Always Sunny in Philadelphia's Glenn Howerton, with whom he performs whenever time allows.
Though she first played Lois Lane in the 1948 movie serial, Superman, with Kirk Alyn, Noel Neill is best known for playing the iconic character on television in The Adventures of Superman with beloved legendary actor George Reeves from 1953 to 1957. So identified is she with this role that her portrayal of the "girl reporter" set the standard for all Lois Lanes to follow.
Metropolis has become such a fan of Neill that the Chamber of Commerce will unveil a statue of her likeness on the second day of the Superman Celebration. Engraved bricks are currently being sold for the base that will hold the life-size sculpture of the actress.
With the unveiling planned for June 11, final engraving orders are needed at the monument company very soon. A deadline of April 16 has been set for ordering engraved bricks guaranteed to be in place for the unveiling. More information about the statue and a brick order form can be found at www.noelneillstatue.com. Orders may also be placed by calling the Chamber of Commerce at 618-524-2714 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Superman Celebration is a long standing festival and a must see event for most anyone, especially comic lovers. Superman fans travel from all over the globe to visit the small southern Illinois town that is the Official Home of Superman.
Metropolis features a 15-foot bronze statue of the Man of Steel and a Super Museum located on the town's Superman Square. A life-size statue of Noel Neill will grace the landscape soon. There are other interesting super-hero related attractions located throughout the city, such as a giant rock of kryptonite. Complete with an Artist's Alley, Man of Steel exhibitions and contests, amusement park, live music and $1000 Superhero Costume Contest, the Superman Celebration provides fun for the entire family. For more information about the Superman Celebration visit www.supermancelebration.net or call 800-949-5740. For information about Superman and other Metropolis attractions, visit www.metropolistourism.com or call 877-424-5025.
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