If you were to ask someone what the biggest geek convention of 2015 would be, they’d probably say San Diego Comic-Con, and it would be a safe bet that they were right. But this year, that title isn’t easily held. Consider the D23 Expo in Anaheim, California, held just a month later and a few dozen miles north, as it attempts to steal a bit of Comic-Con’s thunder (the thunder = the sound of fanboys and fangirls heads exploding).
It’s not easy to imagine a single studio being able to create their own fan convention, but if one studio could do it, it would be Disney. The D23 Expo, in case you didn’t already know, is the ultimate event for all things Disney, held bi-annually for fans around the globe to gather and geek out about the house the Mouse built. What makes this year so important is that it’s not just about princesses and kids shows on the Disney channel. And it’s not just about the Disney parks or collecting every tiny piece of memorabilia churned out for the obsessed masses. Yes, there’s plenty of that, to be sure. But for the most notorious geeks in the world, D23 will become the place that stole Marvel and Star Wars from San Diego Comic-Con for a summer!
It’s happened in previous years, when Marvel skipped over SDCC to give the world their first glimpse at a little film called “Avengers” at D23 back in 2011. In 2013, Star Wars was barely part of the family when D23 welcomed them to the party. All they had to show was a glimpse at the “Star Wars: Rebels” series and a booth showcasing some iconic characters. But this year, they’re going to come at us with both barrels. Marvel will likely bring our first look at “Captain America: Civil War”, “Doctor Strange”, and possibly a few other surprises. Lucasfilm will likely show us the first full length trailer for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. Anyone remember how insane the crowds got during Star Wars Celebration Anaheim back in April? You ain’t seen nothing yet!
Of course, most of this is just speculation and I’m sure that Marvel and Lucasfilm won’t have some kind of presence at Comic-Con, particularly on the exhibition hall floor, but don’t expect any big reveals to happen until August when the D23 Expo gives the fans what they want in the brand new Hall D23 instead of Comic-Con’s notorious Hall H.
Did I forget to mention Disney will also be showcasing the latest from Pixar and their other studio offerings as well? At least two days worth of events will take place in Hall D23, with big stars, memorable tributes, and mind-blowing first looks at corners of the Disney universe we’ve been dying to see forever. So in case I wasn’t clear, here’s all the details from the Disney folks themselves:
Fan-Favorite Events, Including the Disney Legends Awards Ceremony, Take Center Stage in New 7,500-Seat “Hall D23” Venue at the Anaheim Convention Center
BURBANK, Calif., May 7, 2015 – D23: The Official Disney Fan Club announces the lineup of the most highly anticipated presentations at D23 EXPO 2015, August 14–16. The Disney Legends Awards Ceremony, hosted by Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger, will kick off the Expo on Friday, August 14. Later that same day, The Walt Disney Studios will give fans a sneak peek at all the latest from Disney Animation and Pixar. On Saturday morning, The Walt Disney Studios will preview the coming slate of live-action films from Disney, Marvel, and Lucasfilm. Then on Saturday afternoon, fans will get a preview of what’s in store at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts during a presentation hosted by Parks Chairman Bob Chapek.
To showcase these Expo favorites, Disney is creating “Hall D23,” a new 7,500-seat venue located in Hall D of the Anaheim Convention Center, so that more guests than ever can see the presentations live and in person.
The Schedule of Hall D23 Events and Presentations includes the following (times and additional announcements forthcoming; all events subject to change):
The Disney Legends Awards Ceremony will take place Friday, August 14. The ceremony, hosted by Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger, will once again honor those who have made significant contributions to the Disney legacy. The creativity and innovation of these visionaries and artists have earned them a place among such names as Dame Julie Andrews, Howard Ashman, Annette Funicello, Sir Elton John, Angela Lansbury, Steve Martin, Alan Menken, Hayley Mills, Fess Parker, Dick Van Dyke, Barbara Walters, and Robin Williams. At the D23 EXPO in 2013, Tony Baxter, Collin Campbell, Dick Clark, Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Steve Jobs, Glen Keane, and Ed Wynn were inducted.
In two separate Hall D23 sessions, The Walt Disney Studios will unveil an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at its upcoming film slate. At Friday’s session, fans will go in-depth with the talented filmmakers at Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar Animation Studios to get a sneak peek at films such as Zootopia and Finding Dory. On Saturday, live-action titles such as Alice Through the Looking Glass and The Jungle Book and films from Marvel and Lucasfilm, along with some very special guests, take center stage.
On the afternoon of Saturday, August 15, join Bob Chapek, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, for a behind-the-scenes peek at the magical experiences and entertainment coming to Disney’s parks and resorts around the world.
Tickets for D23 EXPO 2015 are available at a discounted price for a limited time. Until June 30, 2015, tickets are $67 for a one-day adult admission and $48 for children 3–12. Tickets for members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club are $58 for a one-day adult admission and $42 for children. Multi-day money-saving tickets are also available. D23 Members can save as much as $188 off the price of admission, based on the purchase of four three-day tickets at the D23 Member rate. For more information on tickets and the ticket pricing structure for D23 Members and general admission, visit D23EXPO.com.
About D23 EXPO 2015
D23 EXPO—The Ultimate Disney Fan Event—brings together all the worlds of Disney under one roof for three packed days of presentations, pavilions, experiences, concerts, sneak peeks, shopping, and more. The event provides fans with unprecedented access to Disney films, television, games, theme parks, and celebrities. For the latest D23 EXPO 2015 news, visit D23EXPO.com. To join the D23 EXPO conversation, make sure to follow @DisneyD23 on Twitter and use #D23Expo.
The name “D23” pays homage to the exciting journey that began in 1923 when Walt Disney opened his first studio in Hollywood. D23 is the first official club for fans in Disney’s 90-plus-year history. It gives its members a greater connection to the entire world of Disney by placing them in the middle of the magic through its quarterly publication, Disney twenty-three; a rich website at D23.com with members-only content; member-exclusive discounts; and special events for D23 Members throughout the year.
Fans can join D23 at Gold and General Membership levels at D23.com and at DisneyStore.com/D23. To keep up with all the latest D23 news and events, follow DisneyD23 on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube.