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1. Leaky Fans on the Ground at the HP Celebration- Part 1: Chelsea

Unfortunately, this last weekend, Leaky wasn’t able to attend the Harry Potter Celebration in Orlando. However, we do have marvelous Harry Potter fans who follow our site, and we invited them to share their experiences of the celebration.

Chelsea Kleven, a Senior Production Editor for a Central Florida newspaper, was the first to share her experience with us. The following review of the Harry Potter celebration is written by Chelsea Kleven. (Click to enlarge photos)

 

I had no expectations for the Harry Potter Celebration weekend. My friend Amy and I had heard about the Harry Potter Celebrations before, but had never been to one. We live an hour from Universal Studios and both have annual passes to the park, and this year, we decided to see what it was all about. We figured it would be over-crowded and impossible to do anything all day, but since we have been to the park and experienced this many times before, we didn’t mind.

Amy and I both work for a daily Central Florida newspaper. I’m a designer, and she has a design background but now works on special projects and social media. We are both HUGE newspaper nerds, which inspires our love for the Daily Prophet (even though it seems Daily Prophet is written by many crooked journalists in the books.)
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We headed straight for Hogsmeade Village when we got to the park, though we normally go to Diagon Alley first (that way you can ride the train from King’s Cross to Hogwarts like you would at the start of a school year. We’ve given this a lot of thought.)
When we looked up the schedule for the Celebration events, we discovered there was a graphic design panel happening in about 45 minutes in Hogsmeade. Perfect! We had just enough time for a ride Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, and run over to the panel. 
For as big of a Harry Potter fan and design nerd as I am, I had absolutely no prior knowledge of Minalima, the graphic design duo behind the Harry Potter films. Their talk was short and sweet, but still awesome. I had no idea what being a graphic designer for a film was like.
They began with a short video showing clips of their work as seen in the films. They discussed how many people don’t realize how every paper, poster, package … everything!…has to be created by a graphic designer. 
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Minalima spent a large amount of time creating a realistic world for these characters to interact in, but often, their work is rarely seen in the final film. For example, they said they spent 7 months working on all of the elements for Fred and George’s shop, when it was only seen in the film for about a minute and 30 seconds.
They weren’t bitter about this at all though. They seemed thrilled to have been a part of the films, and lucky to help bring authenticity to the magical world. Another example of their hard work was how they designed all of Hermione’s books for Deathly Hallows. However, the books, too, were never even seen in the film. All they got was a sound of the books falling over in Hermione’s beaded bag. 
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They discussed how the parks were such a dream for them, because they were now able to show their work in a place where people were able to really stop and look at it. Park-goers could pick up boxes, look at advertisements on the walls of Diagon Alley, and really absorb the detail that went into everything.
The duo also discussed their favorite pieces to create, which were the Daily Prophet and The Marauders Map. The Daily Prophet is my absolute obsession, so I was busy snapping hundreds of pictures of all of the close-up images of the Daily Prophet and didn’t absorb much of what was said about it.
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As far as the Marauders Map, they really reiterated how they wanted to pump the personality of the characters who created the map into their design. It wasn’t about their personal design aesthetic, it was about bringing authenticity to the object. Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs were crafty and intelligent, and they wanted the map to be a reflection of those qualities.
The map was drawn BY HAND based off of architectural maps that had been created for the set. The hand drawings were scanned in and developed into what you see on film. When the map was  first created, there was a small mistake on it. They had included the Room of Requirement. Someone on the team realized that the room was not supposed to appear on the map, and went back through the whole process to take the room out.
After the graphic design panel, Amy and I headed over to the other park where the Harry Potter Expo was located. After chatting with some people at the design panel, we learned there was a wall covered in Daily Prophets at the expo and we had to check it out. We went first to Diagon Alley and had lunch at the Leaky Cauldron, complete with a Dragon Scale beer, and (it is our tradition on every visit) we sat on the stoop of the Daily Prophet office and took a photo.
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We didn’t have to wait very long to get into the expo, though it was pretty crowded. We caught a glimpse of people being sorted into houses by the sorting hat on the way in. 
The expo wasn’t quite as large as we were expecting. There was a large stuffed Fluffy you could take photos with, and a large Fawkes perched from the ceiling. A giant Lego replica of Hogwarts and some other movie props were on display. A wall blank wall was available for fans to write “What Harry Potter means to you.”
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There was a booth handing out posters of the cover of the illustrated Sorcerer’s Stone, and a place to take a Quidditch themed photo. At the Pottermore booth, there was a large map of the new wizarding schools around the world. [Click to enlarge photo]
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Minalima had a booth set up as well, which was where the Daily Prophet wall was. Amy and I took about 394 photos in front of it. Mira Mina and Eduardo Lima were there signing prints they had for sale. They also had a spread of some of the movie props they had designed, such as a copy of Advanced Potion Making, a stack of Qibblers, and pamphlets on “When Muggles Attack.”
There was a cool display of school letters hanging from the ceiling and trailing on the floor, that was previously featured in their gallery exhibit last month. The graphic designer in me was overjoyed.
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There was a studio tour at the expo as well, but the line was incredibly long so Amy and I decided to skip it. And it was lucky we did, because when we left we realized the cast Q&A panel had just begun nearby. We stood towards the back of the crowd, but we still could not believe we were actually seeing the cast answer questions. We had no expectations going into the day of even catching a glimpse of them, so it was an awesome surprise.
Overall the day was amazing. There had been a lot more to do and see over the whole weekend, but we were completely happy with the little bit we got to experience. Maybe next time we’ll try and see more of the events – I highly recommend making a visit!
Chelsea took video of the Q&A that took place in the early afternoon. This cast Q&A was not live streamed, exclusive for those at the celebration. A similar cast Q&A that night was made available on live stream. In this clip the actors talk about their fears and if they have conquered them. The topic of spiders led to asking Rupert to rap, but Matt came to Rupert’s rescue with his own spider story. Apparently Matt is more afraid of spiders than Rupert, and no he definitely has not overcome that fear.

 

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2. ReedPOP and CBS launch 50th Anniversary Star Trek con: ST: Mission New York

More cons! More NICHE cons. And this one is bringing it back to where it all began! ReedPOP, purveyor of New York Comic-Con, PAX, and a bevy of events around the world, have teamed with CBS Consumer Products for Star Trek: Mission New York, to be held Sept. 2-4 at the Javits Center. The event […]

1 Comments on ReedPOP and CBS launch 50th Anniversary Star Trek con: ST: Mission New York, last added: 1/26/2016
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3. A Harry Potter Yule Ball Party!

Members of the Leaky community sometimes ask us if we have any tips for throwing a Harry Potter party. Since I recently had one with some family and friends, I thought I’d share a few photos and ideas! The second annual Harry Potter Book Night is Thursday, February 4th, if you’d like a reason to start planning your own party–not that one ever needs a reason!

First off, the invitations. We gathered wax seal supplies, cream envelopes, and special paper that resembles a roll of parchment from a local craft store. This is what they looked like once finished (the front of the envelopes weren’t anything special):

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There are all sorts of templates on the web for Harry Potter party invitations, from acceptance letter-style invites to Yule Ball invites, and even printable Platform 9 3/4 tickets, which we also included in the envelopes. Click here for a good, comprehensive resource.

Those Platform 9 3/4 tickets came in handy once our guests arrived, because the first step was getting past the barrier!

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Click here for instructions on making the brick wall entrance. We printed and framed the Platform sign, but you could also paint it on. Alternatively, craft and fabric stores sometimes have plastic or fabric sheets that already have a brick pattern on them.

It also makes for a fun photo op! Here’s Bellatrix, Professor Sprout and Pigwidgeon (with Dobby peeking from behind):

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Of course, we had to include the night sky! The “sky” was achieved by splattering white paint onto a black sheet to create the look of stars, but you could also probably find fabric at a fabric store that already looks like a star-strewn sky. The candles were created by using paper towel rolls as the base. We then dripped a hot glue gun down the sides of the rolls to give the effect of dripping wax, and once they were dry, we painted them white. Small pieces of styrofoam were used for the tops and bottoms of the candles so they would look solid (and hold the tea lights). We then placed LED tea lights in each candle, which is completely safe (using tea lights with a real flame is a serious fire hazard, so please don’t attempt it!) Finally, we suspended the candles from the ceiling with fishing wire, which is almost completely invisible and very lightweight. The photos don’t fully capture how spectacular it looked, especially with the lights off.

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We had S.P.E.W. posters about (found on Pinterest) which we framed, and attached clothes pegs and socks to. We also had some owls on high window sills (which were difficult to photograph). You can buy owls at craft and home décor stores, and you can also see one of them below, perched on my shoulder.  I was Hermione, so it felt appropriate to take a photo with one of the S.P.E.W. posters!

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A very talented artist and family friend also created a beautiful, detailed piece of chalk art on our chalkboard so that it looked as if we were looking out of Hogwarts onto the wintery castle grounds:

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There were even adorable Christmas lights and wisps of snow in the trees! And if you look at the previous photo, you can see a patronus behind my shoulder, posed majestically. The chalkboard art made for a lovely backdrop for both the party and pictures. You can very easily make your own chalkboard wall with chalkboard paint, which is widely available wherever you can buy paint.

We also made the Monster Book of Monsters using some thick faux fur, an old belt buckle, some googly eyes and plasticine for the mouth. There are lots of tutorials online, but you can pretty much just wing it without one!

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We took a cue from the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and had Moaning Myrtle lurking in the bathroom (via an iPod dock stored in the cabinet beneath the sink). We kept the lights off and had candles to create a bit of an eerie atmosphere:


And of course, every Harry Potter party needs wands! We made them for our guests using surprisingly few materials, like chopsticks and a hot glue gun. Click here for the super easy tutorial.

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We made sweet and savoury nibbles for our guests, but the sweets were the only thing that we made themed. We found confection labels on Pinterest, and the “stone” castle wall covering you can see in this picture was found at a party store. We made (bug-free!) cockroach clusters (fair warning: making these was quite a labour-intensive project because of all of the little pieces you have to delicately attach. I had no idea it would take so long to make them. Also, I couldn’t find yellow sprinkles, so I used yellow icing instead), chocolate frogs (using a frog-shaped chocolate mold from a craft store), acid pops, and we actually found packs of Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans at a local discount store! We also made Butterbeer, of course! Dark cream soda (or root beer) works best, and we used Marshmallow Fluff whisked with cream soda to create a foamy topping, but whipped cream would work perfectly well. We made an alcoholic version, so we also added butterscotch schnapps, but you could add butter and vanilla extract if you wanted to make a non-alcoholic version instead.

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“We’ll take the lot!”

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Both the cup and Marauder’s Map were purchased at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Our party was a costume party, with “no muggles!” designated on the invites. Everyone looked so wonderful and it was evident that a lot of thought and effort was devoted to all of the costumes. Because it was Christmastime, we made a Christmas “photo booth” with wrapping paper as the backdrop and some fun props. We also set up a camera on a tripod. Here are a few of the snaps:

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Winky, with the villainous Dolores Umbridge looming in the background. Isn’t Umbridge’s pink outfit perfect?

Dobby and Winky toiled away at their costumes, of course, and they looked amazing. This is the how-to for one house elf costume: Gather, tie, and sew a queen-size bed sheet and drag it through the garden (everything from tea bags to coffee grounds were initially used, but it turns out that dirt works the best). The headpiece was a basic rabbit-style cap made of tan-coloured vinyl with pointy ears sewn into the side seams, both of which you can find at costume stores. The noses were purchased from a dance shop and brown stage make-up was rubbed all over them to make them look filthy. The large anime-style eyes were achieved with stage make-up, but Winky’s final word is that real cosmetics would have worked best.

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“What quirks lurk beneath those rosy cheeks? What mysteries do the muscles mask? Does courage lie beneath those curls? In short, what makes a champion tick? Me, myself and I want to know. Not to mention my ravid readers. So, who’s feeling up to sharing? Shall we start with the youngest? Lovely.” Our Rita Skeeter also looked incredible and instantly recognizable. She managed to find the most Rita-esque dress at a thrift shop!

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If you’re looking for some costume ideas that require just a few common supplies, going as a fantastic beast is a good idea! My friends were very creative. Buckbeak was achieved using a mask, a piece of styrofoam carved into a beak shape, paint, feathers, and a hot glue gun, as well as a grey cardigan. Pigwidgeon was achieved using a fur vest and some face paint, and mini buns to mimic owl ears. I also wore Hermione’s time turner, and I used Hermione’s wand from Ollivander’s Wand Shop at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I added the spell effect using the magic of pixlr :)

We didn’t plan any activities, mostly because all of our attendees were adults, and we thought we’d just let everyone mingle. The most themed activity we did was when a few of us took a sorting hat quiz on my phone, but click here for an amazing article from Buzzfeed, which has all kinds of ideas for décor, food, and activities. From organizing a backyard game of quidditch, to playing “Pin the Glasses on Harry,” to hanging a dementor piñata, there are so many cool things you can do. Looking at that list makes me want to plan another party!

Much credit is due to my mum, who poured a lot of time and love into making sure the party was the great success that it was.

If you’ve thrown a Harry Potter party, do share your tips in the comments section!

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4. Harry Potter Events Calendar 2016

Happy New Year!  There’s much to anticipate in the Wizarding World for 2016, from a new theme park at Universal Studios Hollywood to J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and Cursed Child and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.  To help prepare for all of the biggest Harry Potter events, here is a look ahead to what is set for 2016.

 

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Now-January 31: Hogwarts in the Snow

Warner Bros. Studio Tour London presents the sets of the Harry Potter films in all of their winter splendor.  Read more.

 

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January 28-30: A Celebration of Harry Potter

Universal Orlando Resort hosts the annual event with film talent appearances, demonstrations, and Expo.  Read more.

 

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February 5: Harry Potter Book Night

Bloomsbury sponsored the first book night in the UK in 2015, but for 2016, it is going international.  Read more.

 

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April 7: Opening of Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Studios Hollywood

Hogwarts Castle and the village of Hogsmeade come to life in the California park expansion. Read more.

 

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April 16-17: U.S. Quidditch World Cup 9

US Quidditch (USQ) hosts the tournament in Rock Hill, South Carolina.  More than 75 teams have qualified to play.

 

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April 16-17: European Quidditch Cup

Gallipoli, Italy welcomes the club championship for European teams and schools.

 

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June 7: Preview shows of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

J.K. Rowling’s new play in two parts opens for preview audiences.

July 30: Opening of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Opening performance of the play at the Palace Theatre in London’s West End.

 

 

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July 23-24: IQA World Cup

The International Quidditch Association hosts its World Cup in Frankfurt, Germany.

 

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October 19-23: LeakyCon 2016

The Leaky Cauldron affiliated LeakyCon is back.  This year it will be at the Mariott Burbank near Los Angeles, California. Read more.

 

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November 18: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

J.K. Rowling’s new film starring Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander is released in theaters.  Read more.

 

Surely the year will also bring new exhibits from Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, exclusive material from Pottermore, and more informative tweets from J.K. Rowling, so keep visiting The Leaky Cauldron for all of the latest Harry Potter news in 2016!

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5. Nerdlebrity Babylon: Extreme fan bites Norman Reedus at Walker Stalker Con

norman reedus bittenFan favorite nerdlebrity Norman Reedus has become an icon as the zombie-stompin' Daryl Dixon on The Walking Dead. But despite his amazing survival skills he was not able to repel a real bite attack by one of his greatest fans.

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6. LeakyCon.com and Social Media Updates!

In preparation for the exciting LeakyCon 2016, LeakyCon is updating their website, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr. These sites are currently veiled under an air of mystery, as they are being rebuilt from the ground up. With constructing a new theme, LeakyCon promises new and exciting details about the relaunch of LeakyCon in Los Angeles in 2016.

Next Tuesday, September 1, is the “start of term” and the day LeakyCon will unveil it’s new sites. Are you ready to go to Hogwarts?

Please watch the LeakyCon website, Twitter, Facebook page, and Tumblr for more exciting news coming soon! Sign up for newsletter updates on LeakyCon.com.

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7. Person of interest sought in sexual assault at DragonCon

Dragon-Con has the reputation for being an no holds barred exploration of fantasy and cosplay. It draws a lot of lookie-loos, as well, and there have been reports of harassment incidents for some time. Now, sadly, there is a report of a sexual assault that took place Sunday night. The victim has been drinking and […]

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8. Harry Potter Memorabilia In Auction

This week, someone will own a piece of Harry Potter film history.  Prop Store, a source for movie collectibles, will be holding its world-wide live auction on Wednesday, September 23rd.  In August, Entertainment Weekly reported on the upcoming sale, and now, Moviefone and others have articles about it.  Nearly 500 items related to film production, including props and costumes for numerous franchises and cult classics, will be sold.  Three auction lots in the catalog this year are from the Harry Potter films.

The first item, #178, is a Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone movie poster signed by Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint.  The auction catalog says, “This poster was acquired directly from a crew member who worked on location with the key cast members on the film.”

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The second item, #179, is a Hogwarts acceptance envelope with its wax seal (that may or may not have a letter inside).  It is one of the many envelopes in the scene where a tornado of owls and post swirls through the Dursley’s house.

Made from marbled-effect paper, Harry’s address is printed in green on the front of the envelope with the Hogwarts crest printed on the reverse. This hero envelope features an actual red wax Hogwarts seal rather than the many printed envelopes that were also used in the scene. The envelope remains sealed with paper seemingly contained within,” says the auction catalog.

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The third lot, #180, is two scarves given to crew members on the sets of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.  They are both in Gryffindor house colors and have embroidered logos from the respective films.  The Goblet of Fire scarf is in a color-block similar to Harry’s Triwizard Tournament uniform.

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Wednesday’s auction will include a live webcast, and bids will be accepted in person, online, and by phone.  Will someone finally get a Hogwarts acceptance letter?

To see the full catalog of items for sale, see here.

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9. Better Than a Vault at Gringotts

Menahem Asher Silva Vargas, the Guinness World Record holder for largest collection of Harry Potter memorabilia, didn’t want to pack his over 4,000 items away in boxes somewhere.  So this week, after a previous exhibition at Mexico City’s Museum of the Antique Toy, Silva Vargas opened his own museum.

According to an Associated Press article published by El Daily Post, “The House of Asher Potter” museum (a literary name if we ever saw one) opened in Mexico City earlier this month.  Silva Vargas, or “Asher Potter,” started his collection in 2001 and has been building it for the past 15 years.

“I had the good fortune to be able to register it and make the Guinness record a year ago,” Silva Vargas, 38, said. “I’m very proud of it because the record belongs to Mexico. Mexico is now an authority on Harry Potter fandom.”

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The collection is expansive.  There are nearly 4,000 official items counted toward the record, but Silva Vargas also has nearly 400 paper items, including magazine articles, clippings, and autographs that weren’t counted.  Rather than store it all away in a Gringotts vault where these things would never be seen, Silva Vargas opened his interactive museum in a family residence in Mexico City.

 It recreates a number of passages from the novels, including the Potter home… There’s a themed cafeteria, a terrace, a small gift shop and a movie room… The museum also has the contribution of El Callejón D, a themed café located in the south of Mexico City, which offers museum visitors such Potteresque fare as veritaserum and butterbeer.

Visitors can also interact with two birds that Potter fans know well — a crow and a snowy owl…“We want to create a consciousness about birds of prey,” said Javier Illescas, a falconer and museum collaborator. “These two birds in the museum were rescued from logging areas.”

From what we’ve read of it so far, the House of Asher Potter may need to be added to a list of unofficial Harry Potter sites to see.

To read more, see the Associated Press article, here.

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10. Harry Potter and the Inappropriate Hallowe’en (an unofficial Harry Potter show in London!)

If you’ll be in London, England for Hallowe’en and you’re at least 18 years of age, we’ve just learned about a live comedy performance that might be up your alley (though sadly it won’t be in Diagon Alley). Time Out, a London site-seeing website, rated a new comedy show a critics choice must see in a recent article. The show, Harry Potter and the Inappropriate Hallowe’en, is put on by Laugh Out London comedy club–which Time Out ranked the 3rd best comedy club in London.

Harry Potter and the Inappropriate Hallowe’en is described by the event’s creators as the unofficial sequel to Harry Potter, and thus far its only performance date is on Hallowe’en itself–which is, incidentally, the anniversary of the deaths of Lily and James Potter. It is a comedy that centres on Harry returning to Hogwarts years later as an adult to attend the annual Hallowe’en party. Some pressing questions, such as these, from the event page, will be answered:

There will be wands, spells, owls and people with Latin names that represent part of their personality. How will Harry keep his neurosis in check? Will Ginny develop a personality? Is Malfoy still a twerp?

The show features a set of critically acclaimed performers. Adam Larter stars as Harry Potter, and Eleanor Morton as Ginny Weasley, among others.

It takes place on Saturday, October 31st at Leicester Square Theatre and commences at 7:15 p.m., with a run time of 1 hour and 30 minutes.  Adults aged 18 and over are welcome, and to encourage the spirit of Hallowe’en, ‘fancy dress’ (costume) is strongly recommended. The fee is £12.50 for regular tickets and £10 for concession tickets (a discounted fee for seniors and students). Please click here for the full event details and to purchase tickets.

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11. NYCC ’15: Diversity Sells Out

Diversity is a recurring theme in panels at this year’s New York Comic-Con, mirroring a trend in fandom nationwide. Race, gender, physical ability, mental health, even geeks as an emerging protected class – amidst the how-to’s and PR announcements, programming about diversity is filling rooms and getting headlines. The power of this theme is something […]

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12. NYCC ’15: Cosplay Fabrics Announces New Line at Jo-Ann’s

     As cosplay flies from niche to mainstream, so too goes the market for the material used to create it. Quality cosplay is a combination of craft and components – even the most ingenious designer and tailor can find themselves frustrated by poor quality material. One sign of the demand for good cosplay goods: […]

1 Comments on NYCC ’15: Cosplay Fabrics Announces New Line at Jo-Ann’s, last added: 10/12/2015
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13. The Harry Potter Alliance Celebrates 10th Birthday!

Over the past weekend (10th October), the Harry Potter Alliance celebrated its tenth birthday.

Their celebrations included a party at GeekyCon in August, and a month-long Indiegogo campaign (HPA10), through which they raised total of $106,545, well-surpassing their initial goal of $77,777.

NerdCon: Stories provided the venue for HPA’s birthday party, which featured important special guests such as Leaky’s own Melissa Anelli, (President of the Board), Paul DeGeorge (Co-Founder and Board member) and Hank Green and Maureen Johnson (long-term supporters of HPA), along with many more!

The event itself was full-Potter style (though the HPA itself now encompasses all manner of fandom). Harry and the Potters were the Wrock band for the night, and Hank Green played Accio Deathly Hallows, along with his other Harry Potter songs.

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The NerdCon event page stated:

‘ On October 10th, 2005, the Harry Potter Alliance held its first-ever event in Somerville, Massachusetts. Now, ten years later – and with the support of many people in the NerdCon: Stories community – the HPA has grown to a global organization with accomplishments under its belt such as sending five cargo planes of disaster relief supplies to Haiti, donating over 250,000 books around the world, and getting Warner Bros. to make all Harry Potter chocolate ethically sourced.

Come celebrate ten years of the HPA using fandom to make the world a better place and learn how to get involved for the next ten. Recommended attire: dress robes and/or party hats.’

Geeky News reports:

‘Over the years, the Harry Potter Alliance amassed a strong base of supporters and many volunteers. For a long time, that was entirely how the organization was run – by volunteers taking time away from their evenings and weekends, away from day jobs and school, to help make a little non-profit make a difference. I was one of those volunteers for several years. And the HPA highlighted a couple of hundreds  of them during the party. Some, like Claudia Morales and Jack Bird, are now paid employees. Morales, on talking about her reaction to becoming a staff member of the organization she had come to love: “It was like getting my Hogwarts letter.”’

‘Their success is a testament to the power of fandom to change the world for the better. The HPA is the true illustration of what powerful communities united around the passion for a common love of story can do in the world. And it was abundantly clear as several hundred people gathered in the Minneapolis Convention Center, to celebrate the organization that had brought them together.’

The Harry Potter Alliance is a non-profit organisation with the slogan ‘The Weapon We Have is Love’, and its website states:

‘The Harry Potter Alliance turns fans into heroes. We’re changing the world by making activism accessible through the power of story. Since 2005, we’ve engaged millions of fans through our work for equality, human rights, and literacy.’

You can read more on the event and see more photos here.

Join Leaky in wishing the Harry Potter Alliance a very happy 10th birthday, and a huge congratulations on their success so far!

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14. Meet Tom, the Man Inside the Hulkbuster Iron Man Cosplay that Tore Up NYCC ’15

An exclusive look at the BEST cosplay of #NYCC2015.

3 Comments on Meet Tom, the Man Inside the Hulkbuster Iron Man Cosplay that Tore Up NYCC ’15, last added: 10/13/2015
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15. Fan Girl's Guide to the Galaxy

This is a Cybils book, but the opinion expressed in this review is just mine, and not the committee's.

The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy: A Handbook for Girl Geeks Sam Maggs

Here's the guide you've been waiting for on Fandom 101, especially for girls. Everything is covered--how to get started, next steps to take, great books to read and shows to wath, how to make an awesome cosplay costume, tips for writing awesome fanfic, finding your people, and dealing with various levels of trolls. Parts of it are a general rah rah rah celebration of fandom, and parts are very nitty gritty hands-on practical advice (which sites you'll want to be on, but with a throw-away name/email that's not linked to any of your other social media)

It's great and interesting and wonderful with one major fatal flaw that made me want to throw it across the room. It's written right on the back-cover, but I didn't read it, because too much is obscured with library stickers. It's "The Geek Girl's Litany for Feminism."

I m a geek girl and I am a feminist... I don't have to prove my nerd cred to anyone, ever.

There are some great lines in there:

From SuperWhoLock to Shakarian, I accept all fandoms and ships as equally meaningful and important in our geek girl lives...I will support empowering, lady-created media and amazing female characters...

And then we get the kicker that made me roll my eyes so hard they almost fell out of my head:

Buffy, not Bella

Because, all fandoms are meaningful and we support lady-created media, right? Oh... only if they're the right ones. Yeah. That's when I flipped back to where she's introducing fandoms and in the list of major fandoms, the Twihards aren't listed at all. Sure, they might be covered under "YA Book Nerds" but the Nerdfighters get their own shout-out. Potter has its own section. In non-book fandoms, Gleeks get a mention. Squints get a mention. Scoobies are mentioned on the list, despite the fact there's a whole section on Whedonites in general. Leaving off Twihards seems pretty deliberate. And telling.

Outside the Buffy, not Bella thing, Twilight only gets name-checked in the section on how to critique media. There's a general introduction about why we need to critique media and that it's ok if we enjoy not-perfect things but... it's glib and kinda snarky ("I'm not telling you... to stop reading your guilty-pleasure YA romance novels!") And in things to look out for, there's a section on "How Healthy is that relationship, anyway?"

There a lot of media out there (like Twilight and 50 Shades of Grey) that glorifies abusive, controlling, or even violent behavior as a romantic relationship. When we read these books and think, "Wow, that's so sweet that he shows up at her house, uninvited, at night while she's unconscious, to watch her sleep!" we subconsciously accept that behavior as okay.

There could have been a great section on how things that are mostly liked by teen girls are automatically dismissed as lesser and what that says about us as a society and how to deal with that as a fangirl. Or, you know, it could just pile on.

Most importantly, it could have been a great section on how to reconcile how problematic our faves are. I know all about problematic faves. How? Because I am Buffy, not Bella. And even though this book is all over the awesomeness of Buffy (as it should be, Buffy is awesome) it never points out its problems. And Buffy has plenty of problems.

For instance, that whole thing there it's painted as "romantic" for a vampire to show up uninvited to watch his girlfriend sleep? Before Edward did that to Bella, ANGEL WAS DOING THAT TO BUFFY. Speaking as someone who got into Buffy late in the series and didn't go back and watch the beginning until after I read Twilight? Angel has most, if not all, of Edward's icky points. Buffy's other loves all come with major issues in the "healthy relationship" category. Maggs mentions Spuffy elsewhere in the book, and trust me, Spike over Angel any day, but Spike is ISSUES and their relationship is all ISSUES. And I really like Xander, but that guy is really a whole heap of Nice Guy (tm) problems.

When Twilight was still new there were T-Shirts and sayings of"And then Buffy staked Edward. The End" Yeah... Buffy wouldn't have. Edward and the other Cullens would have all been Scoobies. There's a good chance Buffy would have dated Edward. Or at least made out with him, or had a MEANINGFUL slow dance (note to self: see if there's any good fanfic with Rosalie and Cordelia as BFFs. Or Willow and Alice.)

I think the main difference is not the guys, or the relationships, but Buffy and Bella themselves. To save the world, Buffy killed Angel--I don't think that Bella could have killed Edward. BUT, BUT, BUT in one of my many conversations about this (hi, my name is Jennie, and I'm a fangirl) my Twitter friend @FangirlJeanne pointed out something major that has me rethinking that stance:

Buffy was THE SLAYER. She had a job given to her by the POWERS THAT BE. She was the CHOSEN ONE and had to deal with DESTINY. Of course she killed Angel. Bella didn't. Bella was just a normal girl who turned into a normal vampire and she still fought serious battles before and after to protect her friends and family. If Bella was a CHOSEN ONE and had to deal with SLAYER DESTINY, could she have then killed Edward? If Buffy wasn't the SLAYER, could she have still killed Angel? I don't know, but these are the kind of things fangirls think about late at night, both the Buffys and the Bellas.

Maggs went a snarky, easy route that ended up invalidating a lot of her book for me, undermining her main argument. We like all fandoms, but not that one.

And now I'm rage-defending Twilight, which is not a place a like to be. (This review sums up my Twilight feelings pretty well)

Book Provided by... my local library

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16. Eventbrite Survey: conventions have achieved gender parity but some still feel unwelcome

EventBrite, the ticketing agency, caused a lot of talk last year when they released the results of the first survey of convention attendees with breakdowns on gender, spending and more.

They’ve done another survey this year, and the results are even more detailed. Rob Salkowitz has done a round-up over at ICv2 but the Beat has also been given an exclusive preview of some of the data on safety at the con.

The survey was done to provide greater insight into the multi-billion dollar fandom events and convention business, and surveyed 2165 total respondents over two weeks in May. Respondents were drawn from Eventbrite users, with a few from external respondents via social media. 94% of respondents attended a fan event or convention in the past 12 months, While the poll did not cover sexual orientation, race or ethnicity, it delved into gender, and the news is that as far as men and women go it’s now even steven. Also, there is far more gender diversity among purchasers of indie/alt.comix than among regular comics. And that attendees of Tabletop/role-playing games felt less safe than any other kind of event — perhaps because fans of these are actually USED to acting out? Just a guess there.

 

SO MUCH TO CHEW ON. For breakdowns read on:

 

 

Fandom Overall Has Achieved Gender Parity

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• Last year, in a survey using the same methodology and roughly the same sample size, the overall gender breakdown across all fandoms was 46% female, 54% male, but was 50/50 under age 30. (the survey did not provide a non-binary/other option in 2014)
• This year, gender identity breakdown across all responses was 48.9% female, 48.7% male, , 2.4% non-binary/other
• Fandom as a whole is trending female, with women very slightly outnumbering men in our overall sample.
• Under age 40, it’s 50.8% female/46.1% male/3.1% non-binary/other
• There are hardly any significant attitude or behavior differences expressed between male and female fans across most topics polled.





…but gender gaps remain across specific fan interest areas.

• Despite the overall trend toward women across all fan interest areas polled, no individual fandom is close to 50/50
• Tabletop and role-playing gaming and comic book fandom are where the boys are, clocking in at over 62% male.
• Female fans flock to anime/manga, science fiction and genre/comics-based media.
• Fans identifying as “non-binary/other” are most likely to be found in Alt/small press and anime/manga fandom.

Cosplayers are Intense Fans, Spenders, Frequent Con Attendees




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• 499 respondents, or around 23% of our sample, identified themselves as serious cosplayers and/or people who attend shows just to engage in cosplay
• The highest percentage – 29.4% – identified themselves as primarily manga/anime fans. 21% are fans of comic and genre-based media, and 17.7% science fiction and fantasy fans.
• More than 85% of cosplayers are under 40, with nearly 60% between the ages of 23-39.
• Cosplayers are predominantly female (62.5%), with 32% male and 5% non-binary/other
• Only 30% of cosplayers report spending less than $100 at shows. Most (42.7%) spend between $101-250, consistent with the spending patterns of non cosplayers.
• Cosplayers go to more cons than practically any other group. 64% of serious cosplayers attend 3 or more fan events per year. More than 27% attend 5 or more fan events per year.




Cons Generally Make Fans Feel Safe and Welcome
• When asked “In general, do you feel the fan events you attend do enough to make all attendees feel safe and welcome,” 7.2% of respondents (143 total)  said no. 92.8% said yes.
• Anime/manga and toy/collectible fans seem to feel their events do best, with fewer than 5% feeling unsafe.
• By far the worst fandom for safety is Tabletop/role-playing games, with around 17% of fans in that category answering “no.”
• Videogaming fans (mostly male fandom) response is at about 10%; comic and genre-based media (the most female fandom) is around the same.
• There were few statistical differences between how men, women and non-binary/other genders answered this question.




• Among those who feel unsafe and unwelcome:
o 53.5% are female, 45.1% are male, 1.4% are non-binary/other
o 20% are serious cosplayers. 44% do not cosplay at all.
o 40% have been going to cons for more than 10 years
o 35% spend $250 or more
o 85% go in groups of two or more, including family




1 Comments on Eventbrite Survey: conventions have achieved gender parity but some still feel unwelcome, last added: 6/30/2015
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17. SDCC ’15 – Comic Book People at Comic-Con

FullSizeRenderWant to know what comic-cons are really about? Get these books.

In my previous post I talked about the importance of community — it is central to proper understanding of ethics, and as such it is essential to a fan life well-lived. As an influx of new people explore the comics universe, the risk of losing sight of what connects us beyond passive viewing increases and the importance of learning from our history only grows.

That’s why Jackie Estrada’s Comic Book People is so vital – and if you’re at San Diego Comic-Con, you can get the hot-off-the-Kickstarter second volume at the Exhibit A Press booth, #1909 (aisle 1900, near the Lobby B2 entrance).

If you’re new to comic-cons there might be a temptation to think that books filled with photos of people from the ’70s and ’80s (vol. 1) and ’90s (vol. 2) are just for people who went to conventions back then, but as Don Draper would say, this isn’t nostalgia; it’s a time machine. The genius of these books is that you are in many ways their target audience — in addition to names and photos, Comic Book People explains who these people are and why they are important. Not only will this help you discover stories you might have otherwise missed, but they show you a world-shaping network as it grows. These folks built a global pop-culture empire that made billions and changed lives, inspiring an intensity of personal connection that rivals if not transcends that found in other art. Know them and you’ll understand the world you’ve just entered; follow their example and you’ll create a world that today exists only in dreams.

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18. SDCC ’15: Lego Doctor Who and a September 19th season 9 release date among highlights from Doctor Who panel

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Many of the fans packed into Hall H on Thursday waited overnight on the street outside of the San Diego Convention Center for their chance to catch Peter Capaldi’s first appearance at SDCC since becoming the Twelfth Doctor on Doctor Who. Capaldi himself had visited the line for Hall H earlier in the day, embodying the goodwill actors portraying the Doctor have shown fans going all the way back to the classic series era.

Headoverfeels.com creators and editors Sage Young and Kim Rogers held their spots in line for 21 hours, with only one break to rest at a nearby friend’s house. “We had an amazing time,” Rogers said of the nearly day-long experience, “we thought it would be miserable but it was a gorgeous day. We had food, we had friends, and we knew we would have an amazing seat.” The pair ended up being some of the first 100 people let into the massive 6,500 seat hall.

If the fans were tired from their line-waiting experience, their enthusiasm was undimmed as Capaldi took the stage with co-stars Jenna Coleman and Michelle Gomez, who portray the Doctor’s companion Clara and long-time nemesis The Master respectively. The stars were joined on the panel by showrunner and long-time Whovian Steven Moffat. Chris Hardwick of The Nerdist and Talking Dead moderated the hour-long discussion.

Hardwick kicked things off by commenting on Capaldi’s take on the Doctor’s newest regeneration, saying:  “I love that you’re kind of cranky and intense.”

Capaldi replied: “I think he [Steven Moffat] just saw those qualities in me, and just cast me.”

For his part, Moffat explained that writing for the different Doctors wasn’t what made them unique, saying: “On paper the Doctors are actually quite similar, it’s what the actors bring to it.”

Putting on the mantle of a character that’s over 50 years old is no simple task. “Did you feel the weight of Who immediately?” asked Hardwick of Capaldi, who is still in the midst of filming the show’s ninth season.

“It’s in my bones, it’s the only show I’ve followed since I was six years old,” said Capaldi, who then referenced his first appearance on the BBC series in the rebooted fourth season. “I thought that would be the only time of being in Doctor Who.” He then related how excited he was to be on set while David Tennant was playing the part of the Doctor’s Tenth incarnation, asking: “‘David! David! where’s the TARDIS?’ I got quite teary.”

Coleman revealed that her character, Clara Oswald, companion to both the Eleventh and and Twelfth Doctors, “has a rule that that she gets dropped off 30 seconds before she left. I think she’s a bit of a control freak.” Coleman then added that “This series she’s more head first into the TARDIS,” and would be spending more time on-board the Time Lord’s time-traveling spaceship.

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Following “Death in Heaven,” the finale episode of season 8 which saw Gomez’s character seemingly de-materialized in the final moments of the show, there was much in the way of fan-speculation that we hadn’t seen the last of The Master’s game-changing female regeneration known as Missy. Her appearance on the panel confirmed the theories correct.

When Hardwick asked Gomez’s approach to playing Missy, she replied: “Luckily I never know why I’m saying what I’m saying…the writing is all there for me. It’s just a thrill to turn up and get this opportunity to be The Master, it’s still ‘pinch me?’” Gomez further explained her take on the long-running character, saying: “I think he or she or it is the best friend you love to hate…the rules don’t apply to her and that makes her really fun to play.”

Moffat agreed with Gomez’s assessment of the Doctor/Master relationship: “They are friends, which is terrifying. It’s like a friendship between a vegetarian and a hunter.”

Gomez added: “It’s this great friendship that just went wrong. And we’ve all had those…and you’re trying to get in the way of me destroying the universe,” she said, looking to Capaldi, “which I have to do! We both kill a lot of people, he feels bad about it, I don’t.”

Capaldi expounded on his feelings regarding the character of the Doctor: “ I think he doesn’t know who he is, he’s always scrambling around trying to figure out who he is…he’s a constantly growing character.” Echoing a debate his Doctor has with Clara’s love interest Danny over his military past, Capaldi continued: “He’s not a soldier. He’d rather sit at night in a car park looking at the stars than be blowing up Daleks,” before adding: “I like blowing up Dalek’s.”

Though Capaldi felt his Doctor was still mostly a “bohemian/philosopher/rebel time lord,” Coleman was asked about her character’s trouble with the transition of the Eleventh into the Twelfth Doctor.

“She was familiar with how it was working,” said Coleman, “then suddenly your best friend changes his face and who knows what to trust anymore? It’s changing all the rules basically.”

Hardwick inquired after the health of Twelve and Clara’s relationship, asking: “Are they okay now?”

Coleman felt they were, saying: “They’ve found their groove, eating up all of time and space with reckless abandon.”

A never-before seen trailer for Doctor Who’s upcoming ninth season was then shown, which announced the return date of the series as September 19th and ended with a shot of highly publicized guest star Maisie Williams squaring off with Capaldi’s Doctor. The Doctor clearly recognizes Williams’ mysterious character, saying, “You?”

To which Williams replies: “What took you so long, old man?”

When the lights came back up, Moffat explained he could say no more about the episodes featuring the actress, best known for her work on Game of Thrones as fan-favorite character Arya Stark.

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Capaldi told the crowd about the first moment he felt he was really the Doctor: “I think it’s when they threw a rubber spider in my face and said: ‘fight it!’ I said, it doesn’t work, where’s the operator? And they said:  ‘there is no operator, it’s just a big rubber spider. Fight it!’”

Coleman was asked about her character’s difficulty in returning to a normal life after adventures on the TARDIS, to which she answered: “I think it becomes addictive and I think that’s the problem.”

Pondering the fact of the TARDIS’ “bigger on the inside” feature, Moffat said “I used to wonder why the Doctor didn’t use that more? ‘Don’t believe I’m an alien? Look at that!’” When the crowd didn’t react, he continued: “I guess that was just me, then. My Mom was right I should have got a girlfriend instead. Applause for my imaginary girlfriend!” The crowd offered some, and over the sound of the clapping Moffat teased: “Virginity kept me pure.”

The Doctor, for all his humanity, often fails to understand human nature. This seems particularly true of Capaldi’s incarnation, with Coleman commenting: “Clara teaches him how to interact with humans more this season…helps him with his social skills, makes him more of a welcome party guest.”

Speaking again of the Doctor/Master relationship, Moffat said: “This is not new, the Doctor and the master being friends.” He explained he recently went back and viewed  “the Delgado and Pertwee episodes.” Said Moffat: “One of them wants to blow up the world the other one wants to stop it, but they don’t let a little thing like that get in the way.”

When the panel opened up to questions from the audience, one came from a young boy who thanked the panel for helping him with his “Make-a-wish.” Moffat seemed visibly moved in recognizing the child, who asked what Capaldi felt was iconic about this Doctor.

Capaldi answered: “Eyebrows.”

Hardwick extended the question to the other actors on the panel, and when Coleman balked at answering, Moffat chimed in with: “Eyes, huge eyes!”

Gomez added “Lips. Obviously.” She then talked of her kiss with the Doctor in episode 11 of last season, asking fans to decide who was kissing who, saying that if they watched it back again: “Peter is —  there’s some suction there…what you couldn’t see was I was also holding Clara’s hand.”

“That’s hot!” a fan cried loudly from the audience.

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Another fan asked of Moffat what literature he drew most from for inspiration. Moffat answered: “Doctor Who is what made me wanted to be a writer…. I was so inspired by Doctor Who.“He added: “Every screenplay William Goldman has written is great, and if you want to know about comedy writing read Neil Simon.” He later added: “For the record, I do anything for a laugh, I’m a tart.”

When the panel was asked to describe their character’s perfect day, Gomez replied she thought Missy would start her day with a croissant and some tea before saying: “And then slapping Wonder Woman in the face.”

One of the final questions asked if the panel had any advice for aspiring actors. Gomez said: “My agent calls me the roach because I keep getting squashed like a bug and coming back,” before encouraging the audience: “just never give up. This world is abundant, there’s enough for everyone.”

As the panel drew to a close, Capaldi reflected on his first SDCC experience: “To come here and find this warmth and affection for something I’ve been following since childhood is extraordinary….I feel the warmth of the full 50 years pointed right at me.”

Hardwick closed the proceedings by showing a trailer for the recently announced Lego: Dimensions video game featuring a Lego version of Capaldi’s Doctor interacting with Lego Batman and character’s from the Oscar nominated The Lego Movie. Hardwick also announced that his Nerdist network would be broadcasting a TV special titled Doctor’s Finest on August 15th, showcasing the Nerdist’s top 8 favorite episodes of Doctor Who hosted by Youtuber Hannah Hart.

1 Comments on SDCC ’15: Lego Doctor Who and a September 19th season 9 release date among highlights from Doctor Who panel, last added: 7/11/2015
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19. SDCC ’15 Photo Essay – Cosplay Culture

IMG_3070If you’re into cosplay, Saturday night is made for fighting the lines to get into the annual masquerade contest. Here are a few backstage pics from the show, along with a few other shots.

If you attended any of the panels I moderated, you know that my themes this year were community and personal connection. The above candid of what appear to be a mother and son is probably my favorite scene of the show.

As you know, guys have a proclivity toward taking pictures of cosplaying women in revealing garb, with little regard for who these women are as people. A pic I didn’t get: a young woman in an artful Poison Ivy costume who explained her costume to the photographer with a rather revealing statement: “I’d rather wear this every day than be slinging coffee.”

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Captain America stopped by lunch on Saturday afternoon, and judging by the detail on the costume he wasn’t a cosplayer but the real Captain America.

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The good folks at Comic-Con let me join the lucky few Jimmy Olsens and Peter Parkers who get to go backstage the shoot posed photos after each entry performs their routine. Before the show, however, cosplayers who aren’t part of the contest can have their photos taken as well. Harley Quinn dazzled the photographers with an array of poses …

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… and afterward she handed out business cards – turns out she’s a talented seamstress, designer and costume fabricator. This is the case more often than one might guess — cosplay is often a marketing tool as much as a form of self-expression, an aspect of the culture that your typical “babes of cosplay” photo essay tends to miss.

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The daughter of Batman and Poison Ivy enchants the photographers. Kids open the annual cosplay masquerade contest.

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Princess Anna of Arendelle. This is where being in the photographer area was rather illustrative vis a vis the real culture of cosplay. The cosplayers weren’t told to strike a sexy pose — the repeated requests were for them to show the fabric details, construction, and in many cases, lighting and other tech that didn’t show up all that well on my iPhone under bright lights.

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Fabric on display – cosplayers are asked to pose front, back, side to side, in angles highlighting key details, and finally, in whatever pose happens to be their favorite.

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This looked great, but when the head came off it looked like the costume had almost killed the wearer. These things are hot and heavy.

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The Transformers Bumblebee cosplay was a technological marvel to behold – and so tall that it couldn’t fit in the photographer staging area. As a result, we could photograph only the folks who made it work.

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Minecraft 3D.

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This costume was clever and funny – the Barbie doll was a fantastic touch. After the photographers called out for poses highlighting particular aspects of the design, one called out, “Show us your teeth!” — to which the cosplayer deadpanned: “I don’t have interesting teeth.”

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There were a number of other costumes worth highlighting, but like most of the other folks I know here, I’m beat.

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20. More from Daniel Radcliffe at Comic Con

Daniel Radcliffe has shown his good humor this week at San Diego Comic Con.  While officially there to promote Victor Frankenstein, he hasn’t shied away from media interviews and selfie shots.

The photo of the Con so far has been Maisie William’s Instagram post of herself with Hannah Murray, Daniel Radcliffe, and Jenna Coleman.  Nothing makes fandom swoon like a Game of Thrones/Harry Potter/Doctor Who meet-up!

Also, Daniel Radcliffe has done some brief camera interviews while in San Diego.  Talking to Extra, Radcliffe confirms that a cameo in Fantastic Beasts is highly unlikely.  Considering the action of the new film takes place decades before Harry Potter is even born, this isn’t surprising.

Radcliffe also shares his excitement for Victor Frankenstein, calling it a “buddy-adventure movie, but with a lot of, like, you know, dissection of animals and stitching them back together to make new improved animals,” since Frankenstein and Igor’s projects involve a lot of animal re-composition as part of the larger storyline.

In another interview, Daniel Radcliffe jokes about his Rear of the Year award.  To E!, he glibly says, “Oh, yeah, I’ve been campaigning for years.”  Radcliffe then gives a mock acceptance speech for the award, saying that he’s honored– and we’ll all get to see more of his backside in the future.

To read more about the Instagram photo, see here.  To read the article from E!, see here.

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21. More details on Doctor Who Comics Day: new website and variant covers

We’re less than a month away from the second annual Doctor Who Comics Day on August 15th, and if our SDCC exclusive details on Paul Cornell‘s four Doctor series (not to mention the book’s first six pages) aren’t enough to get you vworping with excitement, check out the recent updates to the tumblr Titan has set up for the occasion. There you’ll find a trailer for the five-part crossover arc (which kicks-off in connection with the Doctor Who Comics Day celebration) featuring Doctor’s Ten through Twelve, their companions, and The War Doctor.

The four Doctor series is illustrated by Neil Edwards (Assassin’s Creed) and officially debuts on August 12th, but you’ll only get the chance to meet Doctor Who comic creators and artists if you drop by a participating store the following Saturday for Doctor Who Comics Day. The tumblr has a list of of the talent you can catch at in-store signings, as well as a peak at the local cosplayers scheduled to appear. Not enough? Most stores will also feature Doctor Who themed giveaways, contests and games.

My favorite two variants so far:

Bohemian Rhapsody inspired Forbidden Planet exclusive cover from Joshua Cassara And Luis Guerrero:

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*and*

This lovely nod to the season five episode “Vincent and the Doctor” from David Carr for Twilight Comics:

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1 Comments on More details on Doctor Who Comics Day: new website and variant covers, last added: 7/26/2015
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22. Great Moments in Star Wars cards signed by Mark Hamill

Autograph authenticator Steve Grad has a collection of 100s of Star Wars cards signed by the original cast, and he’s posted a gallery on FB, with more to come. But I think this one by Mark Hamill may be the best one of all. Although these are pretty good, too. More in the link.

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23. Interview: Paul Cornell talks Manic Pixie Dream Doctors, Warcraft, and that time he “messed up.”

We talk with series writer Paul Cornell about his Four Doctors crossover event for Titan, his Dark Horse limited series This Damned Band, a recently announced Warcraft graphic novel due out next year and the one comic he walked away from.

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24. Doctor Who Comics Day is tomorrow!

We've been writing about it for months now, and can hardly believe it's almost here: the second annual Doctor Who Comics Day is tomorrow!

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25. Flame Con announces 2016 return: twice as long, new location

2016 Flame Con will be held for TWO days this time. And that's not all: they're moving to a bigger location too

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