A week out from its announced debut, organizers have confirmed that Universal Fan Con, the new convention created to celebrate diversity and inclusivity in fandom, will not take place and has been postponed to an as-yet unspecified date.
In a series of tweets, organizers said that they were “devastated to make this postponement decision,” and shared that there is a “contingency plan” for those whose travel to Baltimore next week was already booked and are unable to reschedule their trip.
Although no official reason has yet been given for the sudden postponement — social media accounts for the event were promoting the show as recently as yesterday — a source told Heat Vision that the event “has a financial deficit.” In January, Heat Vision talked to Universal FanCon executive director Robert Butler, who said that the Kickstarter campaign to fund the show had been “a greater success than we could have imagined,” raising twice the amount initially asked for. (One of the executive board members of the convention, Melanie Dione, announced her resignation via Twitter this morning.)
Organizers were not the first to announce the postponement/cancellation of the show; that actually happened when hotels canceled reservations for those who had booked through the show’s Kickstarter campaign. After hotel announcements, an email was sent to Kickstarter backers confirming that the show would not be happening on the announced date, although no other ticket holders — or even some panelists scheduled to appear at the show — were notified at the time. The Kickstarter email was shared via social media:
At least some of the emails sent to Kickstarter backers were not properly addressed, with recipients CC’d instead of BCC’d, meaning emails were visible to everyone on the mailing, leading to more complaints. Fans and creators alike are sharing information about what little they know on Twitter:
Guests scheduled to appear included comic book writer Greg Pak, actor Billy Dee Williams and The Magicians star Hannah Levien. At the time of writing, the website for the event does not mention the postponement, although ticket sales have been paused.