Today Disney put out the official word on the dates for their next D23 Expo in 2017. The show is slated to take place on July 14-16, 2017 at the Anaheim Convention Center. This moves the show out of their usual mid August dates. What’s most interesting is who the show could be in direct competition with.
Back in October Unofficial SDCC Blog published a story about possible 2017 dates for San Diego Comic Con, even going as far as to post an entry from the convention center’s calendar.
If this all still holds true then Disney’s D23 Expo will take place the weekend before San Diego Comic Con. Even if there is some shift in date, it’s highly unlikely SDCC would move out of July.
With another Thor film, Sony’s co-produced Spider-Man in 2017, as well as Black Panther and Infinity War Part 1 in early 2018, not to mention more Star Wars films, it’ll be interesting to see what choices Disney decides to make in their marketing push. Divide resources between shows? Certainly Disney has a bankroll that could support both shows and create a mega week of publicity for them. The alternative would be something which feels like the plan they’ve been building towards. Only support the in-house D23 Expo? Last year Marvel Studios skipped presenting in Hall H at SDCC citing the lack of news as the reason. Then just a couple of weeks later fans were shown footage from Captain America: Civil War at D23.What about Marvel as a publisher. Will this scale back their presence on the SDCC floor? It certainly could be a tempting proposition for Disney to pull all their divisions out of SDCC for an audience that’s on their side with less competition for media attention and more control over the message.
Two shows in a similar wheelhouse only 5 days and 93 miles away. D23 Expo 2015 last show saw attendance near 75k, not quite as much as the 130k SDCC takes in. Both shows come with a high ticket price (though D23 offers early bird deals). Yes, D23 is a niche show by design but that niche is home to some of the largest fan bases in pop culture. Where as the diehard comic book fans will more than likely flock to San Diego. At least the ones who can still manage to tune out the major film studio circus part of it. There’s no doubt some fans will have to choose between one over the other since, for many, it’s not financially feasible to attend two mega sized conventions (packed with exclusives available for purchase) in the span of seven days.
Tickets for D23 Expo 2017 will be available starting July 14, 2016 on the D23 website. While badges for SDCC 2017 will be announced after their 2016 show.