New York Comic Con is an annual multi-genre fan convention that focuses on comics, graphic novels, video games, toys, collectibles, anime, manga, movies and television shows. Unlike non-profit San Diego Comic-Con, New York Comic Con is a for-profit event. The convention is managed and produced by ReedPOP, a division of Reed Exhibitions which is responsible for holding pop culture events.
The inaugural New York Comic Con took place in 2006 at the Javits Center in New York City. The event wasn’t quite successful. Reed Exhibitions didn’t have much experience with fan conventions and underestimated anticipated attendance. Due to crowding, the fire marshals locked the main hall. Major guests, including comic book writer Frank Miller and filmmaker Kevin Smith, couldn’t get into the convention center.
Luckily, the organizers learned from their mistakes. The next year, they booked double the floor space and controlled advance ticket sales. As a result, the second convention drew 49,000 visitors (as opposed to 33,000 in 2006). Attendance continued to grow, and in 2014 New York Comic Con surpassed San Diego Comic-Con, becoming the largest comic book event in the USA (151,000 at NYCC versus 130,000 at SDCC). At that time, SDCC was unable to attract more attendees due to venue capacity limits.
New York Comic Con programming is similar to that of other festivals of this kind. It comprises panels and autograph sessions with special guests, screenings, workshops, master classes, discussions, NYCC Eastern Championships of Cosplay, fan events, Artist Alley, and a lot of other exciting activities. NYCC often hosts speed dating events where single geeks can find a potential romantic partner who shares their interests.
Each year, the organizers invite well-known entertainment guests. Among notable guests who have attended NYCC are George R. R. Marin, Stan Lee, Joss Whedon, Lou Ferrigno, Clark Gregg, William Shatner, Felicia Day, John Barrowman, Gillian Anderson, David Duchovny, Patrick Stewart, Kevin Bacon, Vin Diesel, Nathan Fillion, and others.