Wizard Chicago Con Jumps on Anime Bandwagon

Wizard Entertainment announced today that the Chicago Comic-Con, held August 6-9, will host Anime Central Aftershock.

ACen Aftershock! offers a taste of anime and manga fandom with exhibitors, artists, anime showings, panel events, cosplay, contests, and a host of other exciting events normally found only at the yearly Anime Central show. This is the first time ever that ACen has offered programming to fans outside of their annual event. Attendees are encouraged to show up in anime costume.

Wizard cancelled their anime magazine earlier this year, so why the pitch now? I’m very jaded about anything Wizard does after they cancelled two of their four conventions this year yet owner Gareb Shamus bought a New York show. With that in mind, it seems to me that Wizard has finally figured out that anime fans are enthusiastic, like programming aimed at them, and spend money at shows … but it’s several years too late for them to capture that audience.

4 Comments

  1. [...] Johanna Draper Carlson, meanwhile, notes that Wizard, which canceled its anime magazine in March, is incorporating a mini-anime convention into the Aug. 6-9 show with Anime Central Aftershock. [Wizard World Chicago Comic-Con] Carl Barks [...]

  2. I had heard of this, and think it’s maybe pretty smart (on Wizrd’s part), as ACEN this year kicked serious butt, dragging in a massively dedicated fanbase to their regular convention in May of this year. It was the single most profitable convention I have EVER done, and I loved the fans who showed up and actually bought stuff and supported the artists.

    ACEN took place in the same convention center Wiz World Chicago uses (in the second smaller hall), and I’m sure some rep from Wizard saw how well attended this con was and suggested this move to their superiors. Whether the anime fans will put up with a Wizard show and regular fan boys waits to be seen, but at this point, it can’t hurt, truthfully. I catagorized that typical comic fans (male, 13-34) go to comic conventions, and EVERYBODY else who loves all kinds of comics attended ACEN. I can’t rave enough about how good of a time (from a fan perspective and business perspective) I had at ACEN.

  3. Thanks for sharing that perspective. It’s neat to hear about such fan enthusiasm. I’m glad you had a good time and a profitable show!

  4. You can check out my full con report at my Deviant Art account here: http://paulsizer.deviantart.com/journal/24698733/

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