by Christine Leonard
Calling all wannabe Ghostbusters, Stormtroopers and Avengers, the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo is pledging to take attendees back to the future! Already celebrating its 14th year, the highly anticipated annual event is primed to welcome an impressive roster of cultural icons and stars of silver and small screens for their 2019 edition.
“I think one of the big marquee things that we’ve got is Michael J. Fox is coming through Calgary. He was supposed to come out last year, but due to medical issues, he just couldn’t make it. He was like ‘I’ve got to make good on this promise to come out to Calgary,’” says director Kandrix Foong, who emphasizes that the Expo isn’t just about science fiction and fantasy franchises.
“The thing we’ve always done with our shows is divide and conquer. Part of our objective is – if you bring a whole family then there’s something for everyone. Dad might be a big Star Trek fan, Mom might be a Vampire Diaries fan and the kids will have other stuff that they are into, as well. So, this is not just one genre or one thing. It is definitely about entertainment in general and we definitely like the idea of exposing people to different forms and genres of entertainment.”
Capitalizing on the fandom surrounding the hottest movies and television shows of today, the Expo introduces emergent trends and artists while showcasing classic characters and treasured titles of yesteryear. It’s a balance that keeps cosplayers and collectors coming back to the four-day marathon of pop media time and again, with over 90,000 people passing through its gates in 2018.
“There’s a lot of depth in terms of the types of celebrities and guests that we bring out. I think every year we bring out 80 to 100 different kinds of guests and you just get a chance to meet the people who are actually working in this industry.”
The year 1985 will be alive and well as the cast of Back to the Future are joined by members of the original Goonies crew. Additionally, the new Hellboy David Harbour will be appearing, as will Shazam’s Zachary Levi, Dr. Who’s Catherine Tate, Baywatch babe Pam Anderson and Robocop’s Peter Weller. And, don’t forget TV’s Wonder Woman, Linda Carter will be presenting “This Life. My Music. My Story.” as a special ticketed event.
“We definitely do offer a broad mix. There are a lot of classic guests who are still very active in what they’re doing and it’s just good to see,” confirms Foong.
Fans and guests will be granted the opportunity to walk-the-walk again this year as the enormously popular POW! (Parade of Wonders) is set to saunter through Calgary’s downtown core on the morning of Friday April 26.
“It’s like when the Flames are on a championship run, you can feel the energy and momentum throughout the city. Now you’re proud that this is what’s going on in your own backyard!”
The Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo runs from April 25 to 27 at Stampede Park (Calgary)