The San Diego Comic-Con has been cancelled for the first time in its 50 year history.
Organizers behind the annual pop culture celebration announced the cancellation on Friday. The weekend-long event had been scheduled to take place in July.
The annual gathering was founded as the 3State Comic Book Convention in 1970 and has never been cancelled since.
Over 150,000 people from around the world were expected to attend.
“Recognizing that countless attendees save and plan for its conventions each year, and how many exhibitors and stakeholders rely upon its events for a major portion of their livelihood, they had hoped to delay this decision in anticipation that COVID-19 concerns might lessen by summer. Continuous monitoring of health advisories and recent statements by the Governor of California have made it clear that it would not be safe to move forward with plans for this year,” organizers of the massive event said in a statement.
Another convention, WonderCon Anaheim, which was scheduled to take place from April 10-12, 2020, has also been cancelled.
“SDCC also announced that individuals who purchased badges for Comic-Con 2020 will have the option to request a refund or transfer their badges to Comic-Con 2021. All 2020 badge holders will receive an email within the next week with instructions on how to request a refund. Exhibitors for Comic-Con 2020 will also have the option to request a refund or transfer their payments to Comic-Con 2021 and will also receive an email within the next week with instructions on how to process their request,” the statement continued.
People who booked rooms through onPeak, Comic-Con’s official hotel affiliate, will be automatically refunded in the coming days.
“Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures and while we are saddened to take this action, we know it is the right decision,” said David Glanzer, spokesperson for the organization. “We eagerly look forward to the time when we can all meet again and share in the community we all love and enjoy.”
The event will return to the San Diego Convention Center from July 22-25, 2021.