Organizers of the annual San Diego Comic-Con International announced March 1 that the 2021 edition of the confab has been canceled for the second year in a row as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, and as with 2020 programming will be presented online through a free virtual Comic-Con@Home.
“It is the policy of the organization to continue to closely monitor information from local and national healthcare officials as it pertains to the COVID-19 pandemic. Never could we have imagined what the world experienced in 2020 and continues to experience today,” San Diego Comic Convention wrote in a statement posted at Comic-Con.org. “While we are buoyed by the rollout of the vaccine and the growing number of individuals being inoculated, it appears that July will still be too early to safely hold an in-person event of the magnitude of Comic-Con. For this reason, we have made the challenging decision to postpone Comic-Con 2021 as an in-person gathering until our 2022 dates, and once again hold this year’s celebration as the free online Comic-Con@Home.”
San Diego Comic-Con had been slated for July 22-25 at the San Diego Convention Center. In their statement, organizers indicated “the challenges of this past year and the multiple postponements of our two largest events have left us with limited financial resources,” resulting on the decision to narrow the scope of Comic-Con@Home to three days, spanning July 23-25.
The San Diego Comic Convention organization earlier had announced the 2021 in-person WonderCon slated for Anaheim, Calif., has been replaced by the virtual WonderCon@Home March 26-27.
Meanwhile, organizers announced they are hoping to stage a smaller, three-day in-person convention in San Diego in November, with details to come, should the effects of the pandemic subside to an acceptable degree by then.
“While we lament the postponement of the in-person Comic-Con, our commitment to this community of fans and our celebration of comics and the related popular arts endures as an important part of who we are,” organizers wrote. “As the timing and scope of our larger event factored greatly into our decision to postpone, we believe that launching a smaller in-person event at a later time may be a safe alternative.”
Individuals who had purchased badges to the 2020 San Diego Comic-Con and had them roll over to the 2021 show will now have those badges automatically transferred to the 2022 event unless a refund is requested at www.comic-con.org/cci/comic-con-cancellationrefund-policy. Exhibitors who carried over from 2020 can forward their payment to 2022 or request a refund.
Carryover badge holders and exhibitors may also be able to transfer their credentials to the November event should it happen.