Conventions are to make their in-person after being asked to postpone and reschedule due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Big industry names are returning in even bigger ways as fans prepare to return to the conventions they've missed. On August 10, Wizard World and FAN EXPO HQ announced that they join forces for a select number of events.
FAN EXPO is to run 17 shows throughout North America as they will claim Wizard World events hosted in Philadelphia, St. Louis, New Orleans, Portland, and Cleveland as their own. These shows will fall under the name of FAN EXPO in their respected cities. Chicago's Wizard World event will remain untouched by FAN EXPO until 2022 when it will join the existing roster.
“FAN EXPO HQ is devoted to creating unmissable, exceptional fan experiences. We’re beyond thrilled to be able to offer that to fans in six new locations and pleased that Wizard World recognized our ability to elevate guest experience to the next level. We’re looking forward to getting to know the local community, learn what they’re looking for, and raise the bar!” FAN EXPO HQ President Aman Gupta said in the official press release, "Personally, I’m eager to contribute to the incredible legacy of the Chicago event, the second oldest comic event in North America, and restore it to its former glory and beyond.”
Chicago Comic Con was introduced in 1972 and transitioned into Wizard World Chicago in 1998 where tens of thousands of fans gathered to celebrate the world of pop culture. Top creators and celebrities were recruited for the events which gave fans the chance to meet them. even for a moment. FAN EXPO Chicago 2022 plans will be announced later in 2021 with the intention to honor all commitments made to fans, exhibitors, and show floor artists. The press release promises that "fans can expect a new, reinvigorated brand and revitalized attendee experience."
FAN EXPO sits at the head of a collective of international events with FAN EXPO Canada (Toronto, ON), MEGACON Orlando, FAN EXPO Dallas, FAN EXPO Boston, Calgary Comics & Entertainment Expo, FAN EXPO Vancouver, Toronto Comicon, Dallas FAN FESTIVAL, Edmonton Comics & Entertainment Expo in their lineup. FAN EXPO San Francisco will launch in 2022, and FAN EXPO recently hook hold of Denver Pop Culture Con and will convert it into FAN EXPO Denver. FAN EXPO Denver plans to present a "special edition" show in Denver before the show fully opens in 2022. FAN EXPO HQ expects its events to attract nearly one million fans in 2022.
“Every fan, at every single one of our 17 events across North America, will benefit from this game-changing announcement,” Gupta said. “As the largest producer of fan events in the world, we will be able to offer even more exclusive access to superstar talents, international brands, and innovative experiences. 2022 will be the most exciting year in our company’s history."
FAN EXPO schedules, dates, and details can be found here.