Friday, January 10, 2014

Comic-Con to Comic Cannes

When I went to San Diego Comic-Con the first time in 2004 to see Sarah Michelle Gellar, getting a ticket wasn't a problem. Sure, it was a great place to plug new movies and TV shows (it was the year of Lost, for example), but it was still a niche event.Those were the days where you didn't have to buy a ticket a year ahead of time to guarantee a spot. It was still an option, but not the only one. 

That was ten years ago, and those days ended once it was the place to promote movie franchises, from Harry Potter to Twilight, and now the Marvel-verse. Comic-Con tickets sold out months ahead of time The Super Bowl started to become jealous of Comic-Con.

Now, it's come to this...
this year's Comic-Con is making history by not selling four-day tickets, with preview night included.
This is the rate this year:

For adults: Preview Night is 35 bucks, Thursday through Saturday is 45 bucks, Sunday only 30 bucks.
For teens (13-17), people 60 and older and military, half that cost

That's the cost of massive popularity, and the chance of maybe meeting Robert Downey Jr., Joss Whedon, Angelina Jolie, or maybe the 12th Doctor...or maybe Stan Lee. 

That's why I came up with the Twitter hash tag, #ComicCannes

Comic-Con has been called "Cannes for nerds" for years, but now the rising cost, parties, off-convention events and free swag makes it complete. Getting to a sneak preview for a new movie is great, too. I still treasure the fact I was among the first in the U-S to see Inglorious Basterds in San Diego.
Despite higher ticket prices, people will figure out some way to get to San Diego in July, or Wondercon, which apparently has officially declared Anaheim its new home. Combining it with a short trip to Disneyland makes it more obvious. 

What people may be upset, aside from dropping two Benjamins for the week right off the bat, is that they may not be able to go to all five days. Also, preview night is now officially Day 0 of Comic-Con, including an admission price. Maybe the organizers may decide to add more events that day, aside from setting aside time for Warner Brothers to show its TV pilots. 

At least the amount of off-convention events, which are usually cheaper, may attract those without SDCC tickets. We should also thank websites that are smart enough to send us breaking news thanks to smartphone videos. It's how we learned about Tom Hiddleston brought the house down as Loki introducing the trailer for Thor: The Dark World.

However, making Comic-Con more expensive is good news for smaller cons, such as the Wizard World and Creation circuits. There may be less swag, but the chance of meeting a favorite actor is much better. 

When Sacramento has its first Wizard World event in March, people will get to see Stan Lee, William Shatner, James Marsters, and several people from The Walking Dead. Not a bad deal, and thanks to my status as a blog reporter, I get to check it out. I envy those who'll be at Wizard World in New Orleans, because Matt Smith, the 11th Doctor, will be there. 

It's also good news for DragonCon, which retains its status as Comic-Con without the glitz, but still filled with celebrities. 

High prices or not, I hope to get back to Comic-Con someday, mainly through being hired by someone despite my advanced age. For now, I'll look for any chance to see my favorite actors, in costume or not. 


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