Comic-Con inspires entrepreneurial creativity, hi-flying innovation

Global Business

Comic-Con festivities continue in San Diego. But along with the traditional events, there’s also plenty of business and innovation happening in heroic fashion.

CGTN’s Mark Niu has the details from San Diego.

The search is on to find the character with the most character. Tryouts are happening for Making the Con, a reality show run by the startup Cosmunity.

In just a few months since launching, Cosmunity already has 25,000 members on its social network for geek culture and has also raised $700,000 in venture capital funding.

“We’re just capturing the stories of why people come out,” Zac Cooner, co-founder of Cosmunity said. “What’s so special to them? What’s the sentimental significance of it all?”

At Comic-Con, cosplayers looking to step up their game can get expert makeup repairs from the professionals.

Cinema Makeup School has worked on numerous Hollywood projects. This year, its alumni have been nominated for Emmy Awards for shows like American Horror Story and Dancing With The Stars.

“We’re always looking for realism, but the problem with nature some time, especially with wounds or dead bodies, is that it’s kind of boring,” said Lee Joyner, director of admissions for Cinema Makeup School. They kind of blacken and then they wither away. We do it Hollywood style where lot of veining, lot of veining, lot of modeling of colors. So we are looking for something that pops and is exciting but blends into the skin.”

Comic-Con is also a place where you’ll find plenty of characters equipped to reach for the skies literally. Inventor Richard Browning has built this five jet engine-propelled exosuit called Daedalus,and is about to take off.

VIDEO: How many of these Comic-Con cosplayers can you name?

He doesn’t know how to surf or ski, but he does show us that he can fly.

“The starting inspiration was what could be achieved if you combine mind, body and machine. Can we fly in an entirely different way?” Richard Browning, founder of Gravity asked. “Halfway through the journey, Iron Man started to dawn on me, oh this looks like Iron Man and everyone in the public looks at it and goes oh yeah. If I genuinely wanted it to be that I should have painted it gold and red.”

Browning already has orders from some wealthy buyers, who are paying around $400,000 to $500,000 for the unit.

“We’ve actually started to identify some really interesting applications,” said Browning. “They came to us. Obviously there’s quite a lot of military collaboration going on behind the scenes, but in terms of short hop cas-evac, getting first responder medics over the rubble of an earthquake into help people, even we’ve had some incidents in London where police have had to get quickly to a location. We’re not there yet, but I think we’ve opened the door to a whole load of capability that would be really exciting.”

Browning admits he’s had a number of minor injuries during tests, but still believes it’s safer than riding a motorbike thorough the countryside.

He says it’s only early days, but that it’s more about proving that the impossible is possible.

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Richard Browning goes airborne with his 1,000 horsepower suit