San Diego Comic-Con International 2020 has officially been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The massive pop culture gathering was scheduled to take place July 23-26. This is the first time in the event’s 50-year history– the first was held in 1970– that it has not taken place. Generally, SDCC draws 135,000 attendees.
This follows the cancellations of other similar conventions like Anaheim’s Wondercon, as well as events like the Cannes Film Festival, SXSW, and Coachella. Hollywood has scrambled to reschedule all major film releases, while experimenting with alternate forms of distribution for others.
SDCC spokesperson David Glanzer said:
“Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures and while we are saddened to take this action, we know it is the right decision. We eagerly look forward to the time when we can all meet again and share in the community we all love and enjoy.”
Anyone who purchased badges for this year’s con will be given the option of receiving a refund or rolling their admission over to next year’s gathering which is expected to go on as planned. An email will be sent out explaining the process. Anyone who booked a hotel room via onPeak will receive an automatic refund, so no action will be necessary.
SDCC is traditionally used as a launchpad for most major genre projects, with studios like Disney/Marvel and Warner Brothers releasing trailers for highly-anticipated new projects, and gathering the casts and creators for Q&As.
At the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, California Governor Gavin Newsom advised against gatherings of more that 250 people. There had been some hope that the pandemic would have run its course before July, but things haven’t really progressed as most states are in lock-down with people barred from congregating or venturing out for any reason other than to gather essentials. The state of California has declared a state of emergency, as have various counties within it.
Could this pandemic stretch into next year? Possibly. But at this point, next year’s San Diego Comic-Con is expected to take place on July 22-25, 2021.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter