Five Points Festival 2017: Designer Toys, Comics & NYC

Press Release:

The Five Points Festival is a collision of toys, comics, and counterculture curated by Clutter Magazine and sponsored by Midtown Comics and Playcrafting NYC. A designer toy and comic convention coming May 20-21, 2017 to Pier 36 on New York’s Lower East Side, Five Points is two days and nights of comic artists and writers, vinyl and plastic toys, original art, food trucks, and craft breweries – bringing together 15,000 tastemakers, misfits, and rebels in a one-of-a-kind marketplace! Get your tickets now at the link…

  • The Midtown Comics booth will present mega signings with comic royalty including Greg Capullo, Scott Snyder, Nick Spencer, Dan Slott, and Bryan Lee O’Malley! And be on the look out for Five Points exclusives, too, with details coming soon to our Facebook, Twitter, and blog!
  • Meet amazing Designer Toy Artists including Ron English, Amanda Louise Spayd, Chris Ryniak, Gary Ham, Huck Gee, James Groman, Jason Freeny, Jeff Lamm, Peter Kato, Simone Legno, Tara McPherson, and many more!
  • Rub elbows with 150 amazing creators in our Artist Alley including Amy Reeder, Andrew MacLean, Annie Wu, Ben Templesmith, Christopher Hastings, Cliff Chiang, Jamal Igle, Mags Visaggio, Ronald Wimberly, Sean Gordon Murphy, Tini Howard, and more!
  • All of our vendors can be found here and the list keeps growing every day.
  • Outside Pier 36, you’ll find all delicious food trucks including Korilla, Nuchas Empanadas, and Big D’s Grub – and a craft beer garden!
  • Grab an exclusive Dunny designed by Gary Ham! Available in three colors, 3″ tall, and limited to 1000 pieces total (across the three versions), this is the first production Dunny created by Gary Ham in the world!
  • Want the yellow and black Gary Ham Dunny? You’ll want to be a VIP, as it is included with the VIP ticket! Our yellow and black Dunny is limited to only 250 pieces, and being a VIP is the only way to guarantee this colorway! You’ll also get a ticket into the Designer Toy Awards on Friday night, early access into Five Points, and access to the Saturday night party by Sonicboombox!
  • All the awesomeness kicks off at the Designer Toy Awards presented by Lagunitas! The entire art toy world comes together on Friday, May 19 at Webster Hall, and a a VIP ticket is the ONLY way for you to join ’em!

RSVP on Facebook!

Haverhill Library Comic Con Returns on May 20th

Press Release:

The Haverhill Public Library’s annual comic con will be held on Saturday, May 20 from 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM! It’s FREE and for all ages! We have an amazing line up of guests artists, authors, and artisans coming! See list below!

There will be presentations on different aspects of the comic world from Christopher Golden, Tom Sniegoski, James A Moore, and Steve Bissette; a presentation on women in anime by Sarah Hodge-Wetherbe; and a D&D Game Master workshop presented by David Welsh! Children’s activities will include face painting, various crafts, a superhero scavenger hunt, and the ducky derby in our pool! We will also have a costume contest with a winner in three age groups: kid, teen, adult. Please remember that this is a family friendly event so all costumes should be tasteful and appropriate, and please no realistic looking weapons.

Announced guests so far:

Steve Bissette
Christopher Golden
Tom Sniegoski
James A Moore
Craig Rousseau
Jason Ciaramella
Ian Chase Nichols
Ed Dukeshire
Kristi McDowell
Jesse Lundberg
Greg Moutafis
Fiona’s Fright Shoppe
Lindsay Moore
Jennie Wood
David Welsh
Aaron Bolduc
Jimmy Curtis
Jay Kennedy
Andy Arnott
Colleen’s Crafting Corner
Sarah Hodge-Wetherbe

RSVP on Facebook!

Haverhill Public Library
99 Main Street, Haverhill, MA 01830
(978) 373-1586

Awesome Con 2017 Offers Stan Lee Exclusive Programming

Awesome Con, the Mid-Atlantic’s premier pop culture convention is coming to Washington, DC from June 16-18, 2017 and eager to share new programming highlights featuring Stan Lee, the creator of beloved franchises including Spider-Man, Avengers, X-Men, Daredevil, Doctor Strange, and more.

Stan Lee Premium Package

Presented by Stan Lee Collectibles, the Stan Lee Premium Package will be available for $350 and includes: 1 autograph from Stan Lee, a photo op, an autographed lithograph, a comic book from the Stan Lee Collectibles collection, a collectible Stan Lee Awesome Con badge and lanyard, and a $25 gift certificate for the Stan Lee Collectibles booth at Awesome Con. Admission to Awesome Con is not included with the Stan Lee Premium Package and must be purchased separately at www.awesomecon.com; this package will be available for purchase at 10am EST on Saturday, May 6

Bagels & Coffee with Stan – Saturday, June 17

150 guests will have the chance to join Stan Lee for an exclusive breakfast session with the pop culture icon the morning of Saturday, June 17. For $295, guests can participate in a Q&A session with Stan Lee while enjoying a light breakfast buffet. Attendees will also receive a signed photo of Stan Lee and the chance to snap a selfie with him. Admission to Awesome Con is not included in Bagels & Coffee with Stan and must be purchased separately at www.awesomecon.com; this package will be available for purchase at 10am EST on Saturday, May 6. 

Stan Lee Museum Pop-Up

This year, Awesome Con is bringing together highlight items and collectibles from Stan Lee’s expansive career together for the Stan Lee Museum Pop-Up. Check out 18 larger-than-life Marvel statues modeled after Stan Lee’s most well-known characters, including the Hulkbuster, as well as more than 50 pieces of Stan Lee memorabilia spanning seven decades of his career. Awesome Con ticket holders have full access to the Stan Lee Museum Pop-Up during exhibit hall hours. 

Stan Lee Q&A Sunday, June 18

Stan Lee will host a panel on Awesome Con’s main stage on Sunday, June 18, answering questions from attendees about his career and his work over the years. Entry to the Stan Lee Q&A is included with Awesome Con tickets.

RSVP on Facebook!

Cincinnati Comic Expo Offers Scott Snyder/Greg Capullo Fan Experience

Press Release:

The Cincinnati Comic Expo is honored to create a Scott Snyder/Greg Capullo Fan Experience package for the weekend of the show!

The package will get you exclusive items, such as a badge and a lithograph. You will get into a private panel event, a private signing, and get a selfie photo with the artistic duo!

More details for the Scott Snyder/Greg Capullo Fan Experience are available and can be purchased right now at the link…

This package will be limited, so act fast!

Other guests include Adam Hughes, Jae Lee, Chad Hardin, William Stout, Darryl Banks, David Michael Beck, David Mack, Ty Templeton, Bob Layton, Ashley Witter, and more.

RSVP on Facebook!

For further information please go to the website: cincinnaticomicexpo.com

Triad Anime Con 2017 Report (including Interview with Johnny Yong Bosch)!

Greensboro. Third-largest city in North Carolina. Named for Major General Nathanael Greene, commander of the American rebel forces at the Battle of Guilford Court House on March 15, 1781. Two centuries later, a Greensboro resident, Orson Scott Card, set war at the heart of his novel Ender’s Game. Speaking of war, Greensboro is home to the Atlantic Coast Conference and often the site of its annual men’s basketball tournament, the last conference tourney before March Madness. Syracuse University coach Jim Boeheim told the world what he thinks of the city, and I forgive him his Gotham grouchiness. Perhaps if he spent more time there, he would have a softer opinion. Perhaps if his team had gone to this year’s Triad Anime Con, held March 3-5 at the Koury Convention Center, they wouldn’t have lost their first tournament game three days later.

Triad Anime is done by the same team that puts on Ichibancon in Charlotte (I wrote about this year’s Ichibancon here). It is normally held in Winston-Salem but moved to Greensboro this year and a larger venue. A much larger venue. Here was the view Friday morning.

Bueller? Bueller?

Things heated up throughout the day, and of course Saturday brought in a great crowd, but the whole weekend felt less cozy that I was accustomed to. I expect that to change, however, as the con grows into its new digs. The on-site Starbucks was a welcome sight, and next door was Four Seasons Mall, with plenty of lunchtime options. And for perhaps the first time in my convention-going career, I didn’t have trouble finding a parking spot.

When I first attended Triad back in 2014, there were only two or three guests. This year had three times that number. Vic Mignogna has been every year (read our 2016 interview with him here), and I always enjoy seeing him. I was eager to see Brian Beacock, but he had to cancel (hey, Triad: get a phone app like Ichibancon so you can update us on changes like that). The person I was most excited to see was Johnny Yong Bosch. Power Ranger, voice actor, rock star, Johnny has done a little of everything. Whereas Vic has the personality to fill a lecture hall, Johnny is more reserved. I caught up with him on Friday after his autograph session.

What’s it like going from a character like Ichigo (Bleach) to someone like Izaya Orihara (Durarara!!) or Saruhiko (K – Project)?

Well the thing is, I didn’t work on those at the same time. There’s a lot of separation in time. So things I worked on while I was doing Bleach was Code Geass. And I think that overlapped a little bit with Eureka Seven. They’re different characters in different shows, but once you know your character, you just go in and do it.

How did you get into voice acting after doing live action?

Well, basically I was working on an independent film with the Japanese stunt team from Power Rangers, and the audio got screwed up. So I had to dub myself. As I was dubbing myself for the movie, the producer walked in and heard my voice and he thought I had a decent hero voice and asked me to come audition for some animation. And when I auditioned for that animation, I got the role for Vash from Trigun.

Why do you think Power Rangers has stayed popular for over twenty years?

Well, that’s a good question. A majority of the fans have stayed pretty loyal. I know there have been different actors over the years. I really don’t know. Basically, I think that it’s something that people grew up with and that they want to keep watching.

What has been your favorite role thus far in your career?

It’s very hard to pick one. It’s like picking your favorite child. For me, they’ve all been really great moments in my life, from Vash in Trigun to Bleach, Code Geass. I think one of my most favorites would be Nero from Devil May Cry 4, because I got to do the motion capture. I got to go to Japan for the first time. And I wasn’t limited to the animation. I was creating the character and then they animated it. And it was more of me. That would be one of my favorites.

What is it like doing motion capture?

Motion capture is weird at first. Your motions have to be overdone a bit and you have to overact your body language so that the computer can read your motions. But your face and your voice have to be very natural because they pick up every little detail.

What do you think of all of the fanfiction of Shizuo and Izaya?

I don’t read those. I know they exist. People have brought me books that looked interesting at first and I’m like “Huh, what is this?” So no, I don’t read those, but I did a long time ago with Power Rangers. I was like “Oh, there’s fan fiction?” And I read one. It was a little weird for me, so I stayed away from it.

I thought it was cool that Narita, the creator of Durarara!!, made a fiction of Shizuo and Izaya for April Fools’ Day.

[What Johnny said here was, “Oh my goodness.” But what I heard was this.]

Let’s switch gears a little. How did you get started doing conventions?

In 2001 or 2002, a director of Trigun, whatsherface, went to Sakura Con and said that she had an awesome time and it was really cool and a lot of fun. She recommended to me to go and took me with her the following year. And it was cool. Over the years, little by little, the convention scene (nice shout out) started growing. It wasn’t every weekend then like it is now. I started getting more invites. And now I have a few booking agents that handle me and my appearances.

How many conventions a year do you do?

I think last year it was fifteen or twenty, this year I’m already doing far too many. It’s neat to come out and meet fans. If I’m in the booth working on a project, nobody is saying “great job”. The director might say “Okay, next one. Okay next one.” It’s not like in theatre where everyone cheers. You don’t get to see the reward. Coming to a con, is seeing that reward. Seeing whether it was a success or not. The only drawback for me is my family. My family is back home. My kids are little. My son, for the first six months of his life, didn’t know me and was afraid of me. That’s where I had to pull the brakes a little and make some changes.

How did you start your band, Eyeshine?

Basically I couldn’t get a job to save my life after Power Rangers. There weren’t a whole lot of half-Asian roles at the time. I was very depressed, and I was near homeless. I had two trash bags full of clothes and a guitar. And in that time, I started teaching myself to play the guitar. Out of all that, I formed the band.

How many concerts a year do you do?

I have no idea. There are so many. We have quite a few this year. We have a lot of albums now. Got a new one coming out this April.

Between conventions and your band, when do you find the time to do acting?

I do that as well! Every day. My weeks are usually booked a couple of weeks in advance. Sometimes more than that. For voiceover work especially because they know their schedule and when things are coming along. The end of this month and going into next month, I already have bookings for voice over.

Are you able to record at home?

Sometimes I record at home. I do have a studio at home. But sometimes they like you to be there, but on occasion, they’ll ask for pickups or something to be done at home.

Okay, last question. What are some of your favorite TV shows?

I am watching Walking Dead at the moment. Breaking Bad was a really good one. Sons of Anarchy was a very interesting show. I watch a lot of terrible shows. Not terrible as in inappropriate, but terrible as in really bad.

Do you ever think, when you’re watching a bad show, “I could do better”?

I may have thought that. The thing about bad TV shows is they stay with you forever.

Fellow Convention Scene writer Michaela McPherson and I pose with Johnny.

Another thing I enjoy about Triad and Ichibancon is the Otaku Flea Market. Held all day Sunday, the flea market is a chance for any convention goer to sell merchandise. It is a feature I have seen at no other convention. The intent is for people to sell their own used stuff–manga, costumes, DVDs, toys, cards, etc.–but sometimes vendors who couldn’t get into the dealer room will grab a table. I have also seen people selling original art, which is against the rules: art belongs in artist alley. It is a good rule though hard to enforce in the first-come-first-served madness of getting flea market tables. Besides, who says the person made the art they are selling? I had trouble finding this year’s flea market because it wasn’t in the room designated on the convention map, which probably explains why all the sellers had their wares on the floor instead of on tables. One of the hiccoughs of being in a new venue, I guess. Again, however, a phone app would have made the room switch easy to announce.

To all my readers, I’ll say this: come out next year and check out Triad Anime Con. It is terrific value–the weekend pass was only $42!–and I guarantee you’ll have fun. Don’t let Jim Boeheim have the last word on Greensboro. And before you go, enjoy these photos.

A view of the dealers room

Security was pretty tight at this convention.

“Near, far, wherever you are . . .”

The long and short of it

Not your typical cosplay car

Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made, especially an old guy picketing an anime convention.

Ballers

Nice tat-Tardis!

Was she trying to tell me I need more Right Guard?

I guess only MOST exits are an entry somewhere else.

The family that cosplays together stays together.

So sad when a convention ends. I’m looking forward to next year already!

Scene on the Web: Dick Van Dyke to Make 1st Ever Comic Con Appearance (in Phoenix), Wonder Woman Cosplayers Wanted in Salt Lake, and More

Image for Cosplay Friday #208 – STAR WARS Celebration Highlights | Nerdist

Cosplay Friday #208 – STAR WARS Celebration Highlights | Nerdist

28 Apr, 2017

It’s hard to believe Star Wars Celebration Orlando took place two weeks ago. I feel like the ultimate gathering of Star Wars fans happened yesterday. Since I’m still being fueled by the energy of the

http://nerdist.com/star-wars-celebration-cosplay-friday-208/


Image for Actor Dick Van Dyke will be guest at upcoming Phoenix Comicon

Actor Dick Van Dyke will be guest at upcoming Phoenix Comicon

28 Apr, 2017

People planning to go to the upcoming Phoenix Comicon got super supercalifragilisticexpialidocious news on Friday: Dick Van Dyke will be in attendance.

http://ktar.com/story/1548955/actor-dick-van-dyke-guest-upcoming-phoenix-comicon/


Image for 3ders.org - Mechanical 3D printed Gray Fox helmet takes Metal Gear Solid cosplay to the next level | 3D Printer News & 3D Printing News

Mechanical 3D printed Gray Fox helmet takes Metal Gear Solid cosplay to the next level | 3D Printer News & 3D Printing News

28 Apr, 2017

Diego Valdes, a mechanical engineer and cosplay lover, has designed a 3D printed version of Gray Fox’s helmet from Metal Gear Solid. The prop contains 12 3D printed parts.

http://www.3ders.org/articles/20170428-mechanical-3d-printed-gray-fox-helmet-takes-metal-gear-solid-cosplay-to-the-next-level.html


Image for Call For Cosplayers: Wonder Woman screening – Salt Lake Comic Con September 21-23, 2017

Call For Cosplayers: Wonder Woman screening – Salt Lake Comic Con September 21-23, 2017

28 Apr, 2017

Visit the post for more.

http://www.saltlakecomiccon.com/call-for-cosplayers-wonder-woman/


Image for Silicon Valley Comic Con 2017 recap | The Nerd Element

Silicon Valley Comic Con 2017 recap | The Nerd Element

29 Apr, 2017

Recently we had the chance to attend Silicon Valley Comic Con (which took place April 21-23 at the  San Jose Convention Center in San Jose, CA). For a comic con to be in it’s second year, we were real

http://www.thenerdelement.com/2017/04/29/silicon-valley-comic-con-2017-recap/


HeroesCon 2017 Adds Further New Guests

HeroesCon has announced more new guests for their 35th anniversary show including Brandon Peterson, Chris Brunner, Cliff Rathburn, Frank Barbiere, Janet Lee,  and more! HeroesCon 2017 takes place June 16-18, 2017 at the Charlotte Convention Center.

LAUREN AFFE | Buzzkill, Five Ghosts, Turok
FRANK BARBIERE | Violent Love, Five Ghosts, The Revisionist
ANDY BENNETT Vampire: the Masquerade, The Phantom, Kolchak the Night Stalker
TYLER BOSS4 Kids Walk Into A Bank, Natives, Swimmers
JORDAN BOYD | Deadly Class, Savage Things, Invisible Republic, Ant-Man
CHRIS BRUNNER | Loose Ends, Southern Bastards, Batman: LOTDK
JACOB CHABOT | Marvel Tsum Tsum, Spongebob Comics, The Mighty Skullboy Army
SEBASTIAN GIRNER | Shirtless Bear Fighter
CARLA HARVEY | Pretty Girls Do Ugly Things, Blood Sister
GREG KIRKPATRICK | Living in Infamy, Savage Dragon, Big Bang Comics, Invincible
JANET LEEReturn of the Dapper Men, Jane Austen’s Emma, Wonderland Alphabet
BROCKTON MCKINNEY | Gingerdead Man, Ehmm Theory, Killer Queen
BUSTER MOODY | TASK FORCE RAD SQUAD
DAN NAKROSIS Spider-Man the Manga, X-Men the Manga, The Conservation Corps
BRANDON PETERSON | Inhumans, Age of Ultron, X-Men
CLIFF RATHBURN | Walking Dead, Green Valley
J B ROE | Brainbuster 2019, Döda
JONATHAN BRANDON SAWYERGWAR, Welcome Home
BEN SEARS | Volcano Trash, Night Air, Double+
LARRY WATTS | Amy of Darkness, Evil Dead 2, Robyn Hood

RSVP on the Facebook event page!

For the most up-to-date information, check our blog, or sign up for the weekly Heroes Hotline newsletter. You can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook!

TICKETS AVAILABLE HERE

BUYING AN ADVANCE PASS MEANS YOU’LL GET ANY ADVANCE INCENTIVES WE OFFER, FREE!

ENTRY WILL BE $25: FRI $25: SAT $20: SUN / AT THE SHOW ITSELF, SO YOU SAVE AS MUCH AS $20 BY PURCHASING ADVANCE PASSES TODAY! TICKETS ARE NOT REFUNDABLE, UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES WE MAY CREDIT AN UNUSABLE TICKET TOWARD FUTURE TICKET PURCHASES.

HEROES CONVENTION was founded in 1982 by Shelton Drum, owner of Charlotte’s Heroes Aren’t Hard To Find comics shop. Since then the convention has become famous for its comics-first and family-friendly atmosphere, where fans can mingle directly with professionals and exhibitors. Boasting an incredible guest list built mainly on reputation and goodwill, HeroesCon is known nationwide as a “must” on the summer schedule, drawing fans, exhibitors, and creators from all over the world to the Charlotte Convention Center.

Scene on the Web: Midwest Media Expo Cancelled, D23 Lineup

Image for Detroit-Based Comic Con Suddenly Cancelled Three Days Before Event [Updated]

Detroit-Based Comic Con Suddenly Cancelled Three Days Before Event [Updated]

26 Apr, 2017

Midwest Media Expo, a mid-sized comic con in the Detroit area, has cancelled this year’s event due to issues with the hotel… three days before the whole thing was supposed to start.

http://io9.gizmodo.com/detroit-based-comic-con-suddenly-cancelled-three-days-b-1794682670


Image for Adam Savage cosplays as Chewbacca with C-3PO in tow

Adam Savage cosplays as Chewbacca with C-3PO in tow

26 Apr, 2017

Watch the former “MythBusters” co-host secretly invade Silicon Valley Comic Con while dressed as the famous Star Wars Wookiee.

https://www.cnet.com/news/mythbusters-adam-savage-cosplays-chewbacca-wookiee-c3po-star-wars-silicon-valley-comic-con/


Image for This amazing powered cosplay armour took 518 hours to create - DIY Photography

This amazing powered cosplay armour took 518 hours to create – DIY Photography

25 Apr, 2017

Cosplay, fantasy and photographing it has become huge over the last decade or so. At comic cons around the world, people show up as their favourite video game, TV and movie characters. And every year

http://www.diyphotography.net/amazing-powered-cosplay-armour-took-518-hours-create/


Image for D23 EXPO: Hall D23 Presentation Lineup for July's event announced | An Englishman In San Diego

D23 EXPO: Hall D23 Presentation Lineup for July’s event announced | An Englishman In San Diego

26 Apr, 2017

For many con fanatics, it’s going to be one of the busiest couple of weeks of their lives – San Diego Comic-Con (20th-23rd July 2017) and, the weekend before that, the celebration of ev…

http://www.anenglishmaninsandiego.com/connews/d23-expo-hall-d23-presentation-lineup-for-julys-event-announced


Image for Jim Demonakos to leave ReedPop — The Beat

Jim Demonakos to leave ReedPop — The Beat

25 Apr, 2017

Emerald City Comic Con founder Jim Demonakos announced he’s leaving ReedPOP, destination unknown, on a FB post. Demonakos has served as Global Director of Comic Talent for ReedPOP since they …

http://www.comicsbeat.com/jim-demonakos-to-leave-reedpop/


Image for Wondercon Roundup! Suddenly Susan Takes The Con By Storm! Comic Con HQ! Toddland! The Convention Floor! And More! | Mike The Fanboy

Wondercon Roundup! Suddenly Susan Takes The Con By Storm! Comic Con HQ! Toddland! The Convention Floor! And More! | Mike The Fanboy

25 Apr, 2017

Wonderful, wondrous Wondercon! Mike and I headed down to Anaheim for our annual visit to Comic Con’s adopted younger brother. I enjoy Wondercon because of

http://www.mikethefanboy.com/wondercon-suddenly-susan/


Image for Ten tips for publicizing convention events — The Beat

Ten tips for publicizing convention events — The Beat

26 Apr, 2017

By David Seidman It’s con season in the comics world, which means that someone has to attract people to attend panels, signings, parties, and other events. I’ve done it, and it’s not easy. But you …

http://www.comicsbeat.com/ten-tips-for-publicizing-convention-events/


TCAF Celebrates 25 Years of Image Comics

Press Release:

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival returns for it’s 9th year to Toronto Reference Library, with a star-studded kick-off event! Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of premiere U.S. comic book publisher Image Comics, the event will see an amazing panel discussion about the history, impact, and future of Image by some of their most famous cartoonists. Featuring:

  • Governor General’s Award nominee Jeff Lemire (Secret Path, Royal City)
  • Charlie Adlard (The Walking Dead)
  • Sana Takeda (Monstress)
  • Emma Rios (Island)
  • Brandon Graham (Island, King City)
  • Chip Zdarsky (Sex Criminals, Kaptara)

A rollicking discussion of where Image Comics has come from and where it’s going in the future! A signing will follow.

Tickets are required to attend. Tickets will be made available for FREE on Eventbrite starting Monday, April 17th, at 11:00am. Ticket link: tcaf2017.eventbrite.com. Limit 2 per person.

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival 2017, Saturday May 13, 9am-5pm, and Sunday May 14, 10am-5pm, @ Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street. Attendance is FREE to the public. Full details on the TCAF website: www.torontocomics.com

Future Con with Chris Hadfield Announced

Smithsonian and Awesome Con Introduce Future Con New Science Festival Inside Washington, D.C.’s Comic Con Kicks Off with StarTalk Live! Hosted by Astronaut Chris Hadfield

Press Release:

Smithsonian magazine and LeftField Media today are announcing a partnership to create an exciting new live event called “Future Con,” a three-day science, technology, and entertainment celebration that will be featured within LeftField Media’s upcoming Awesome Con on June 16-18, 2017 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. Future Con will highlight the intersection of science, technology, and science fiction inside D.C.’s largest pop culture event. It is sponsored by Science Channel, features partners including NASA, the American Physical Society, the National Science Foundation, and Nerd Nite, and it will be headlined by StarTalk Live! hosted by Astronaut Chris Hadfield, who became a social media sensation through his (literally) out-of-this-world videos and performances from the International Space Station.

Driven by experts at Smithsonian magazine, Future Con will mix together interactive experiences, engaging discussions, and special guests centered around creating new awareness and advocacy for all things science, technology, engineering, and math. Previous Smithsonian Future events have featured astronaut Buzz Aldrin, oceanographer Bob Ballard, Star Trek actors William Shatner, Patrick Stewart, and George Takei, and the creators of Deadpool, The Martian, and The X-Files, with the Smithsonian now bringing similar visionary names from science and science fiction together in front of a broad, public audience at Awesome Con.

Awesome Con, now entering its fifth year, attracts over 60,000 attendees and participants including Stan Lee (co-creator of Spider-Man, Iron Man, and the X-Men), David Tennant (star of Doctor Who and Jessica Jones), John Barrowman (Doctor Who and Arrow), Felicia Day (creator of The Guild and noted author, producer, and blogger), Wil Wheaton (writer, blogger, actor, and voice actor), and Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo (acclaimed Batman writer and artist team). Awesome Con is a celebration of comic books, movies, television, toys, and games, and Future Con will add science to the worlds Awesome Con explores.

“The Smithsonian’s mission is to spread knowledge throughout the universe,” says Michael Caruso, editor in chief of Smithsonian magazine and Vice President of Live Events. “And we at Smithsonian are excited to partner with Awesome Con to do just that—transforming D.C.’s largest pop culture convention into a platform to showcase the individuals and organizations building the future today and communicating the important issues and technologies that will define our path tomorrow.”

“Our fans obviously love Star Wars, Star Trek, and Doctor Who, and we know they care deeply about real-world scientific advances in the same way they’re fascinated with science fiction,” says Ben Penrod, Awesome Con’s founder. “Working with Smithsonian magazine to create Future Con is one of our proudest achievements, making Awesome Con a space not just to entertain but one to inspire and educate, and we hope we can play a small part in creating the inventors, engineers, educators, and astronauts of tomorrow.”

Future Con’s kickoff event will welcome Colonel Chris Hadfield to host a special edition of StarTalk Live! Col. Hadfield is a veteran of two space shuttle missions and former commander of the International Space Station. He’s also been called the “most social media savvy astronaut” by Forbes for his ongoing documentation of his time in space to over 2 million Twitter followers. Col. Hadfield will appear at Future Con to lead a taping of StarTalk Live!, an award-winning talk show bridging the intersection between pop culture and science with humor and passion.

Future Con will see further pioneering names in space travel, artificial intelligence, nanomachines, climate science, and medical research share the stage with some of the brightest names in pop culture—with presenters including John Mather (NASA’s Nobel Laureate and head of the James Webb Telescope), Adam Steltzner (NASA’s “Rock and Roll Engineer” and head of the Mars 2020 mission), and Seth Shostak (Senior Astronomer at SETI: the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence). Thought-provoking talks at Future Con will include Cassini’s Spectacular Grand Finale at Saturn, Parallel and Multi Universe Theory in Sci-Fi, Mars: Past, Present, & Future, Harry Potter and the Genetics of Wizarding, Space Lasers, and Antarctic Dinosaurs.

Future Con takes place June 16-18 inside this year’s Awesome Con, and no separate ticket is needed to attend—admission to Awesome Con includes access to Future Con’s speakers, exhibits, and events. For tickets to Awesome Con, visit awesomecon.com. For more information on Future Con, please visit smithsonianmag.com/futurecon, follow Awesome Con on Facebook and Twitter, and search for #futurecon.

ABOUT STARTALK LIVE

Science meets comedy onstage at StarTalk Live!, the StarTalk Radio road show that’s entertaining and educating sold-out audiences around the country! Just like the award-winning podcast, radio show, and Emmy nominated TV show, StarTalk Live! explores current events from the frontiers of science and includes scientists, celebrities, and comedians as featured guests. Each live show bridges the intersection between pop culture and science with clarity, humor, and passion, covering captivating subjects like space travel, human intelligence, extraterrestrial life, the Big Bang, the future of Earth, and the environment. StarTalk Live! gets its DNA from StarTalk Radio, the iTunes chart-topping radio show/podcast hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson and the Emmy nominated TV show on the National Geographic Channel, StarTalk TV. StarTalk Live! is co-produced by Curved Light Productions and Pretty Good Friends.

ABOUT SMITHSONIAN MEDIA

Smithsonian Media is comprised of its flagship publication, Smithsonian magazine, Air & Space magazine, Smithsonian Books, and the Smithsonian Media Digital Network. In addition, Smithsonian Media oversees the Smithsonian Institution’s interest in the Smithsonian Channel, a joint venture between the Smithsonian Institution and CBS/Showtime. Smithsonian Media is a division of Smithsonian Enterprises, the revenue-generating business unit of the Smithsonian Institution. The Smithsonian Institution is the world’s largest museum and research complex consisting of 20 museums and galleries, the National Zoological Park, and nine research facilities. Approximately 30 million people from around the world visit the museums annually. (smithsonianmag.com / si.edu)

ABOUT LEFTFIELD MEDIA

LeftField Media, LLC is an events company focused on developing face-to-face events in a range of communities rooted in contemporary culture and shared passion. LeftField was formed in 2014 by Greg Topalian (President, LeftField Media) and is now owned by Topalian and Clarion Events Ltd. With a keen sense of the ever-evolving needs of businesses and their consumers as well as new opportunities created by change, LeftField takes a clean slate approach to business. LeftField’s portfolio includes Play Fair (playfairny.com), a family-focused celebration of toys and play built with the Toy Industry Association; Awesome Con (awesomecon.com), Washington DC’s Comic Con; Rose City Comic Con (rosecitycomiccon.com), Portland, Oregon’s Comic Con; Anime NYC (animenyc.com), a Japanese pop culture festival presented by Crunchyroll; the Five Points Festival (fivepointsfest.com), a designer toy and comic art convention curated by Clutter; and the Classic Auto Show (theclassicautoshow.com), a classic and vintage auto show launched in Los Angeles. LeftField Media is headquartered in historic Trumbull, CT. (leftfieldmedia.com)

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