WonderCon Moves To Anaheim For March Show, C2E2 And Wizard World Shift Dates [Conventions]
WonderCon is breaking from tradition in 2012, scheduling a March 16-18 show in Anaheim, Calif. rather than at its San Francisco home of 25 years. Responding to the March date, Reed Exhibitions has rescheduled its Chicago convention C2E2 for April 13-15, 2012 while Wizard World has agreed to slot its Wizard World Anaheim show even later in the year. WonderCon cites its traditional venue, Moscone Center's renovations as the cause for the move, though the tactical advantages of being closer to major Hollywood studios and their actors certainly isn't a negative side effect. Tom Spurgeon has confirmed that WonderCon's move isn't necessarily permanent, however, reporting that the show is working to return to SF in 2013.From WonderCon's official press release:
In a move to help alleviate an overcrowded calendar, ReedPop's C2E2, which has been waiting to announce dates for its own show in March 2012, will now seek alternative dates while Wizard World has announced that it will postpone its April 2012 Anaheim show.
"It certainly was not our wish to move," commented David Glanzer, director of marketing and public relations for the nonprofit event. "However, when faced with the prospect of canceling the show for a year or moving locations, after careful consideration we decided to keep WonderCon on the 2012 calendar at a venue that could accommodate our needs."
"We fully understand the challenges of trying to secure dates at any venue, let alone one undergoing renovation," said Lance Fensterman, Group Vice President of ReedPop. "In an effort to minimize the impact on exhibitors and attendees we are currently looking to shift C2E2 from our traditional March dates."
Gareb Shamus, CEO of Wizard World offered a unique solution to offset any potential conflict for fans and exhibitors: "All of us who produce conventions know securing dates can often be a frustrating experience especially when you find yourself having to move to a new city." Shamus continued, "Because of their long history, Wizard World has decided to accommodate WonderCon and postpone our April 2012 Anaheim show."
As noted by Heidi MacDonald, this diplomatic joint statement from three conventions seems to indicate that the "Con Wars" of recent years are over. The cooperation levels are almost creepy. That's not to say that the shifts won't affect smaller regional shows, though. Industry pros are already venting about potential or outright convention conflicts in the coming year via social media. With any luck, similar co-coordination efforts can be made to keep both guests and fans on an even keel in every market in the coming convention season.