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Wilmington Comic Con returns: local legends, cosplay, and a shot at the silver screen

This year's event expects bigger crowds, more costumes, and unexpected surprises.

Thor, Ironman, Captain America, Spider-Man and Ant-Man were among the cos-play finalists at the previous Wilmington Fan Expo and Comic Con 2018. (Port City Daily photo | FILE)
Thor, Ironman, Captain America, Spider-Man and Ant-Man were among the cos-play finalists at the previous Wilmington Fan Expo and Comic Con 2018. (Port City Daily FILE PHOTO)

WILMINGTON — After drawing record crowds last year, the Wilmington Fan Expo and Comic Con returns to downtown Wilmington this month.

The 2018 Comic Con will feature artists, directors, actors and a lot of cos-play enthusiasts – some who show up to compete for prizes, some just for fun. This year’s event will also feature an open call for an upcoming horror film.

Returning guests will include professional wrestlers Papa Stro Maestro and Tommy “Wildfire” Rich, directors Mike Roberts and Tom Gore, veteran make-up artist William Stine, and others.

Vaughan Wilson ("One Tree Hill," "Vaughan") and writer-director Mike Roberts at the 2017 Wilmington Comic Con. (Port City Daily photo | CORY MANNION)
Ryan Williams (“Vaughan”) and writer-director Mike Roberts at the 2017 Wilmington Comic Con. (Port City Daily photo | CORY MANNION)

Roberts, whose local production of “Vaughan” is slated for release on Hulu and other streaming services, will be joined by actors Vaughan Wilson and Ryan Williams. Roberts is currently at work on “The Doctor’s Case,” an adaptation of a Sherlock Holmes penned by Steven King.

Other guests, vendors and artists are still being added to the roster, which you can find on the Wilmington Fan Expo and Comic Con 2018 website.

Who’s got the cosplay chops?

Whether it was a character from Star Wars or Marvel's The Avengers, last year's cos-play contestants got deep into their roles. (Port City Daily photo | CORY MANNION)
Whether it was a character from Star Wars or Marvel’s The Avengers, last year’s cos-play contestants got deep into their roles. (Port City Daily photo | CORY MANNION)

This year’s Comic Con will again feature a cosplay competition. A panel of judges will rate individual costumes on creativity, craftsmanship and “authenticity to character portrayed,” according to convention organizers.

Related Story: Star Wars, superheroes, and wild animals invade the Cape Fear Comic-Con

Judges will begin interviews at 3 p.m. and announce finalists at 4: 30 p.m. Finalists will have the chance to prepare a thirty-second performance – in character – as part of the judging.

A shot at the big screen

This Comic Con will offer fans of horror the chance to take things up a notch. An open casting call for the horror film “Evening Guests,” produced by award-winning producer and director Will Williams and Comic Con organizer John Stamey, will be held. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. during the convention, casting interviews will be held for both lead and supporting roles. Interested actors should bring a resume, recent photo and head shot, and a pen or pencil. For more information, message the Cape Fear Comic Con’s Facebook page.

The Wilmington Fan Expo and Comic Con 2018 will be held at the Coast Line Conference Center on Saturday, February 17, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets for adults are $10, children 12 and under will be admitted for free. For more information or to reserve vendor or artist tables, visit the Comic Con website or the event Facebook page.

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