You have MCM London Comic Con twice a year, New York Comic-Con, and San Diego Comic-Con. Sadly, in 2020 we won’t have any of them due to the current climate. However, that doesn’t mean that Comic fans and international film companies can’t come together to enjoy the likes of Batman, Superman, Spider-Man, and Black Widow. Like any other industry, the entertainment industry had to adapt the last few months and did that with a bang. Let’s discover what new ideas were created to bring fans, movies, and comics closer to each other.
Comic Cons in different online forms
The most significant change was, without a doubt, moving comic cons online. Ok, the usual meet and greets, autograph and photograph sessions weren’t possible, but thanks to Comic-Con@Home and DC FanDome, fans could still enjoy the newest trailers, exclusive footage, and panels. It might be less exclusive because everyone can access it, but that’s also the strength of online comic cons. We all know how expensive entry tickets can be, and so the fact that audiences can now access the content for free makes it so much easier for everyone around to world to see things they might never have seen otherwise. Still, we certainly can’t wait to see all the colourful, stunning, and one-of-a-kind cosplays, be in awe with other comic fans about upcoming releases and just feel that uplifting and exciting vibe.
Alongside those newfound events, a few platforms gained more fame because of the changing landscape. One of those was Twitch. For those of you who haven’t heard about Twitch, it’s a video live streaming service from Twitch Interactive, part of Amazon. At first, it focussed mostly on the live streaming of video games but also focused on music, film, and entertainment. Because of the cancellation of comic cons, organizers decided to this platform as their Q&A platform. Instead of hosting a panel in a packed room, they’re now just setting up a live-stream via Twitch. They get to interview the cast and crew of a film or television series from a distance, and fans worldwide can watch it wherever they’re from and submit their questions. To get that ‘exclusivity’ vibe, the live-stream isn’t available after the Q&A.
Meet and greets with a twist
Standing in a long queue, waiting for hours, and then when you can finally meet the stars in person, it was worth it. Getting that euphoric feeling again won’t happen anytime soon (what a shame though), but there’s still a way with which fans and their favourite actors, directors, and producers can have a tête-à-tête. Just as back in the days, fans can buy meet and greet tickets, but instead of seeing the stars in real life, you get a Skype or Zoom invitation.
While the intimacy might get a little bit lost because of the virtual meet up instead of an in-person one, there’s also a positive thing regarding the online meet and greets. If you want to meet film cast during the comic cons, you wouldn’t only have to pay for the tickets, but if you come from outside the country, you also have to pay for the flight, accommodation, etc. Therefore it can become expensive and also not affordable for everyone. The online meet and greets, on the contrary, are much cheaper and can be bought all over the world. Although the intimacy level decreases slightly, there’s definitely still that feeling of excitement, anticipation, and wonder when that Zoom call in loading.
Because we weren’t able to come together, we reunited via Zoom meetings and Skype calls and so did the cast and crew of films and television series. There’s only one small difference. Their reunions could be attended by all the fans all over the world. One of the most entertaining ones was The Lord of the Rings one in which the likes of Peter Jackson, Elijah Wood, Orlando Bloom, Andy Serkis, Viggo Mortensen, and Sean Bean participated. The fans didn’t only get insights on what happened when the cameras stopped rolling, but some scenes were acted out again.
Will online events replace the physical ones?
Right after the FanDome, it was announced that the event got 22 million views across 220 countries and territories. The fans aren’t only standing behind comic cons, but they make sure that the meet and greets sell out and that the online reunions get millions of views. Will online events keep on rising throughout the following years, and will they replace the physical ones or just go side-by-side? To be continued for sure.