Since 1969, Comic-Con International has gathered industry professionals and celebrities, vendors, and fans to celebrate the world of comics. Over the years, Comic-Con has increasingly catered to pop-cultural areas related but not limited to comic books: science-fiction, horror, animation, card and video games. In recent years, Hollywood has learned the value of Comic-Con's enthusiastic and vocal audiences; studios have sent exclusive preview reels and top talent to beat the drum for upcoming films. The infusion of Hollywood has helped Comic-Con grow in scope and attendance, with approximately 100,000 attendees in 2005 filling two floors and all eight halls of the San Diego Convention Center. Over 285 programming events (a majority still devoted to comics) share time over four days that include an independent film festival, the annual Eisner Awards for excellence in the comics industry, autograph signings, a Masquerade competition, an art show, a blood drive, gaming, and massive amounts of film, video, and anime screenings; the vendor-packed Exhibit Hall spans 460,000 square feet. Comic-Con only continues to grow with each passing year. Before long, it may be called The Con That Ate San Diego... For more information, or to preregister for next year's con, visit http://www.comic-con.org.
For Groucho's coverage of the 2005 Comic-Con, click here.