For the first time in its 20-year history, Star Wars Celebration has been canceled. The organizers of the event made the announcement via the official website, citing—literally what else—concerns over the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. “At Star Wars Celebration, the health and safety of our fans, attendees, exhibitors, guests and staff is always our number one priority,” reads the statement. “Due to the global impact of the COVID-19 virus and in speaking with local and state authorities on the latest public health guidelines related to indoor conventions, we have made the decision to cancel Star Wars Celebration for 2020.”
This year’s Celebration was scheduled for August 27-30 at the Anaheim Convention Center. Rather than delay or reschedule the event, organizers have decided to return to Anaheim in two years, dating the next Celebration for August 18-21, 2022. In addition, fans who had already purchased passes for this year’s Celebration have the option of transferring their tickets to the 2022 event, receiving a full refund, or receiving a credit for Star Wars Celebration merchandise (weird option, that one). Fans can begin requesting ticket refunds and merchandise credits on June 22; requests must be made on or before August 26.
Star Wars Celebration is the latest event to cancel over COVID-19 concerns, and joins a growing list that includes multiple music and film festivals and media conventions, including SXSW, Cannes, Coachella, San Diego Comic-Con, and pretty much any large gathering of people you can think of. Most recently, the Academy Of Motion Pictures Arts And Sciences moved to delay the 2021 Oscars ceremony to April and extend the qualification period for film releases.