First-ever Comic-Con Asia confirmed for 2018

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 14 2017 06:35 PM | Updated as of Sep 14 2017 06:36 PM

Daiana Menezes (left), dressed as Wonder Woman, and Senator Manny Pacquiao (center) help launch Comic-Con Asia 2018. Photo from the event's Facebook page

There's a new pop culture convention in town -- and it's promising to bring a mix of international and regional guests for Filipinos fans to meet. 

Comic-Con Asia 2018, which was officially launched to the press on Wednesday night, is scheduled for March 24 to 25 at SMX Convention Center in Pasay City. 

The event is being planned by Pauline Laping of PSL Entertainment Production, who is also the CEO and director of Miss Global Philippines, together with Nam Entertainment Group. 

It is being billed as a new convention for lovers of all things anime, comics, gaming, cosplay, TV shows, and movies. 

The lineup of guests was not unveiled, but a teaser (seen below) highlighting competitions, talks with industry professionals, workshops from experts, and panel discussions was shown. 

Filipino boxing icon and senator Manny Pacquiao, who has starred in his own superhero film, "Wapakman," back in 2009, has been tapped as the event's ambassador. 

Describing it as a chance for local talents at the spotlight, he said: "Maraming itong matutulungan at mabibigyan ng opportunity." 

The decision to tap Pacquiao to promote the event was criticized by well-known comics artist Gerry Alanguilan, whose work "Elmer" was nominated for Best Graphic Album in the 2011 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award, considered to be the Oscars for comics. 

He said that he will not be attending the event, citing Pacquiao's controversial statement about people in same-sex relationships being "worse than animals." 

"If people have no problem with this, then by all means, attend and participate," Alanguilan wrote in his website. "I am NOT advocating a boycott. I am simply saying that I will not be going."

"My decision shouldn't affect anybody or cause anyone to freak out and bring down lightning from the heavens. It's just another event I won't be going to, simply for personal reasons," he added. 

There's no set date on when Comic-Con Asia 2018 will release its lineup of guests, but it already has an official Facebook page that fans can follow. 

This will be the first edition of Comic-Con Asia 2018, which doesn't appear to be tied with any international conventions, adding to the growing lineup of pop culture events in the country.