People know ReedPop has issues running conventions, but what happened at Star Wars Celebration Orlando for its opening should be the nail in the coffin of them handling events for Disney/Lucasfilm in the future.
The biggest problem came with the overnight line for the big 40th Anniversary panel that kicked off the convention. I have multiple groups of friends who camped out in the line all night, and through multiple announcements were told they would be getting into the main panel room, only to be told in the morning that they didn’t have enough room and would be put into an overflow room if they wanted to see the panel.
So to clarify this is what happened:
-People camping out were told to not worry, not to leave, and to continue to go without sleep thanks to the loud DJ music as they’ll be getting into the panel that they were camping out for.
-When the morning came around and the convention organizers woke up from their comfy hotel rooms, they were told that they camped out all night for nothing. They wouldn’t be getting into the main room they were told they would.
That is absolutely no way to treat people who paid a lot of money for badges and many of which travelled across the country. All that to go a night without sleep for nothing, even after they were told they’d get into the room. All of this is made even worse by there being only one real entrance into the convention. Everyone is funneled through one entrance for security screening and that causes the line to wrap around the building.
The last US Celebration was in Anaheim two years ago, and while there were some issues with the overnight line and how medical badges were treated, it’s nothing compared to what some fans experienced in Orlando.
Every two years Disney operates their own D23 Expo in Anaheim and it’s never had these sorts of issues. Maybe Disney should drop ReedPop from putting on Star Wars Celebration and take it over for themselves. They’ve shown from D23 Expo that they can handle a big convention, and Star Wars fans deserve better than what they’re experiencing right now in Orlando. Hopefully the panel for The Last Jedi fares better tomorrow…