More on the SDCC Preview Night sellout — correction

It is surreal to be writing stories about San Diego Comic-Con selling out in October. But that is the reality we live in. We asked SDCC PR and marketing director David Glanzer a bit more about yesterday’s announcement that passes to Preview Night had sold out:

Q: What’s behind this shockingly early sell-out? Were fewer tickets available? I’ve heard publishers and other attendees say that Preview night has become the new Saturday, so has there been a need to trim the size of the crowd?

Glanzer: In the past all four-day badge holders could attend Preview Night, though not all did.

This year, however, it seemed more crowded as more people took advantage of that ability.

For 2010 the decision was made to offer an option (of whether they wanted to attend Preview Night) to those who pre-registered for four-day badges. We limited the number of badges for Preview Night to the number of those who attended in 2008.

Q: Does this mean that if you want to go to Preview Night…you can’t any more?

DG: Currently you cannot purchase a Preview Night badge, that is correct. Four-day badges are currently still available.

Q: Should we take this as a clue that four day passes might be selling out soon?

DG: Right now I think we’re okay. But it’s so hard to predict. I think we’re going to try to do a better job of keeping the public informed if those begin to sell more quickly.

Q: Any other changes we might be looking for at the horribly early date?

DG:I think this is pretty much it for now anyway.

The news that the SAME number of preview night passes have been sold as last year may trigger flashbacks and PTSD in some people. As one industry veteran booth runner at a prominent comics company told us recently, “Preview Night is horrible.”
Oops, David pointed out that he said attendance is being held to 2008 levels, which is LESS than 2009 attendees, hopefully leading to FEWER flashbacks and PTSD.

With no programming to distract attendees, and exclusive swag giveaways at the movie booths, Preview Night has been dubbed “The new Saturday,” by most vets. It’s the most crowded and frantic time at the show. It’s worth noting that this year, (you’ll recall San Diego ended 10 weeks ago) TV/Hollywood programming was added to Wednesday night for the first time, and there were several off-site events. One might expect even more of this in an attempt to thin the crowds a bit.

Also, as noted above, there has been a scaling back to 2008, which should come as welcome news.


  1. LHB says

    Whatever happened to industry expo that they used to do years ago on Tuesday and Wednesday – before Preview Night?

  2. says

    @ LHB – Are you perhaps referring to PRO/CON, which happened prior to San Diego’s regular Preview and convention days? Sadly, it passed away. tried to do something this year… but I didn’t do any follow up on it. I have little idea how it went.

  3. says

    LHB refers to the Comic Book Expo. It’s featured in the SDCC book which just came out (look for the exclusive prints!), but it hasn’t existed for quite some time.

  4. Mark Coale says

    As mentioned in yesterday’s post, I remember that the Expo and Pro/Con both still existed in the late 90s (having attended them both one year AND the comics arts conference).

  5. michael says

    I still don’t get why they would be ‘scaling back’ when people obviously want to attend the thing? O.o

  6. ed says

    As asked in the previous PN Sellout post: just how many 4 Day+PN passes are there compared to the 4 Day Only passes?

    If the ’10 PN attendees are capped and “scaled back” to ’08 PN attended numbers… how much 4 Day Only passes are left??

    And was this a change mandated by the SD Fire Marshall?

  7. Sean D. says

    “If the ‘10 PN attendees are capped and “scaled back” to ‘08 PN attended numbers… how much 4 Day Only passes are left??”


    Sorry. Math class flashback.

    “If Fred takes the Sunliner from LA to San Diego on Saturday and Julie drives down on the 5, how long will Fred be back in LA after a day at the con by the time Julie finds a parking space in Little Italy?”

  8. Rob Jensen (aka ShutUpRob) says

    “If Fred takes the Sunliner from LA to San Diego on Saturday and Julie drives down on the 5, how long will Fred be back in LA after a day at the con by the time Julie finds a parking space in Little Italy?”

    Fred will have been back from Saturday at the Con for approximately four days before Julie finds a parking space anywhere in the downtown-ish area. That’s why, because she’s been to the convention before, she parks at Fashion Valley Mall and takes the trolley (complete with two transfers) into the Con.

    — Rob

    — Rob

  9. ed says

    C’mon, the answer’s easy: Fred and Julie would be turned away from the Con, because they forgot that SDCC stopped selling passes at the door… And they’d be stuck in northbound traffic on the I-5 at Del Mar.

  10. says

    Being one of the fortunate few who have sold comics artifacts at every SD Comicon since #1 in 1970, I might be one of the few “pure” comics dealers left in the room who welcomes the growing pains of this gathering of the tribes.

    These days my people begin arriving Sunday nite for early Monday load-in, by Wednesday nite we are already burned out from three days of “comicon” – then they let the people in -:)

    Considering my busted hip joints will be repaired and fully recovered by then, all the good deals will already be scarfed up before it opens to the public – by me.

    That said, i object mightily to the movie studios horning in, assuming central positions dominating the room, trying to take over that what we made great decades ago.

    Mayhaps the name should be changed to Moviecon is what i was told by another long-time booth person. The huge crowds are driven by the allure of “free” movie swag, not by the comics any more, sad but true.

    Plus this event is ultimately “hosted” by the city of San Diego which translates into prices being artificially jacked up for the week of Comicon just to survive and house your vehicle, etc. Why is that?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *