Star Wars Celebration 2020 Canceled

Disney-owned Lucasfilm June 15 announced it has canceled the 2020 Star Wars Celebration confab slated for Aug. 27-30 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif., citing the ongoing efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

A memo posted at the official Star Wars Celebration website (StarWarsCelebration.com) states “the health and safety of our fans, attendees, exhibitors, guests and staff is always our No. 1 priority. Due to the global impact of the COVID-19 virus and in speaking with local and state authorities on the latest public health guidelines related to indoor conventions, we have made the decision to cancel Star Wars Celebration for 2020.”

The site announced that the next Star Wars Celebration will take place Aug. 18-21, 2022, at the Anaheim Convention Center. The Star Wars Celebration event, which started in 1999, is typically held every couple of years.

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Fans who were planning to attend this year’s Star Wars Celebration may either transfer their current ticket to the new event dates, receive a refund or receive a credit for Star Wars Celebration merchandise. Those who transfer their tickets to 2022 will receive a free exclusive Star Wars Celebration stormtrooper character pin for all transferred tickets.

All information about transferring tickets or requesting a refund can be found at starwarscelebration.com, and ticket holders will receive an e-mail with detailed instructions on submitting a request. Fans who pre-ordered merchandise can opt to still receive their order or request a refund. The exclusive merchandise planned for this year’s show will be available for purchase online at some point in the future.

The ticket refund and merchandise credit request period will open June 22 and must be completed by Aug. 26. Hotel reservations booked through the Star Wars Celebration housing portal will automatically be canceled.

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Star Wars Celebration is the latest high-profile pop culture convention in Southern California to be canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, following WonderCon slated for the Anaheim Convention Center in April, and San Diego Comic-Con International in July.

WonderCon Postponed Amid Coronavirus Frenzy

To the surprise of few, the 2020 edition of WonderCon in Anaheim, Calif., has been postponed as a result of concerns surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.

The event had been slated for April 10-12 at the Anaheim Convention Center. The fan gathering is organized by the Comic-Con International group, which also presents the annual San Diego Comic-Con International, an annual mecca for studios and content creators to interact with pop-culture fans, and showcase new movies and TV shows.

While not as large, WonderCon still attracted a sizeable presence from nearby, Hollywood, though studios had begun to withdraw from fan gatherings in recent weeks in an effort to protect their employees from the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

While myriad confabs and sporting events were becoming casualties of the growing fear of the spread of COVID-19, on March 11 CCI affirmed plans to carry on with both WonderCon and San Diego Comic-Con this year.

Later on March 11, however, the California Department of Public Health announced a recommendation that gatherings and events of more than 250 people should either be postponed or cancelled to protect public health and slow the rate of transmission of COVID-19.

WonderCon typically draws about 60,000 attendees, about half of its San Diego counterpart.

The initial announcement of the California guidelines covered events through the end of March, which meant WonderCon technically fell outside the orders’ parameters.

However, by March 12 CCI finally acceded to what most observers had considered an eventuality.

In a statement, CCI announced that it would abide by the recommendation and postpone WonderCon. Those who had purchased badges will receive refunds.

San Diego Comic-Con is still planned for July 23-26.