Get ready to don your finest cosplay apparel, because the Masquerade is on!
If there’s one thing San Diego Comic-Con is known for, it’s amazing cosplay. And that’s never more true than at the annual Masquerade, where competitors show off their amazing (and sometimes hilarious) creations. Plus, you never know who’s going to stop by.
Entries are now open for the 2023 Masquerade, and you can find the official rules and entry for on their site. One important thing to note is that if your costume participated in Comic-Con International’s virtual Comic-Con@ Home or [email protected] Masquerades in 2020 or 2021, or in WonderCon 2023 in Anaheim, it is eligible to compete in this Masquerade as well. However, competing costumes must not be worn at the convention prior to the show.
The event, to be held on Saturday, July 22 in Ballroom 20 at 8:30PM, draws a crowd of 4,000 attendees (with 2,000 more watching in Sails Pavilion and other rooms, which act as overflow). Just as in previous years, the Masquerade is free to participate in for anyone with a Saturday badge.
Contestants can enter as a single participant or in a group, and medallions will be given to the winners in the following categories:
- Best In Show
- Judges’ Choice
- Best Re-Creation
- Best Original Design
- Best Workmanship
- Most Humorous
- Most Beautiful
- Best Young Fan
Winners in the above categories will also receive a free 4-day badge to San Diego Comic-Con 2023 – which is a big prize in and of itself. In the event that a group wins, up to six memberships will be given.
Additionally, several companies and organizations offer cash prizes for sponsored awards, which include:
- Frank And Son Collectible Show, of the City of Industry, California, “Your one-stop show for ALL your collectible needs” will take a break from their large bi-weekly mini-conventions to present to the entry that their representatives deem the Audience Favorite a generous $1,000 cash prize, plus a trophy.
- The Art Directors Guild, IATSE Local 800 —The ADG has among its members Art Directors, Graphic Artists, Illustrators & Storyboard Artists, Model Makers, Pre-vis Artists, Production Designers, Scenic Artists, Set Designers and Title Artists of the motion picture, theater, and TV industries. The ADG is presenting two $500 awards: The ADG Cosplay Award for Original Concept Design, presented to the entry most exemplifying a wholly original concept, and, the ADG Cosplay Award for Best Visual Media Design, presented to the entry whose design best interprets a character or concept from a TV show or motion picture.
- The Costume Designers Guild IATSE Local 892 — Hollywood costume designers from the CDG will present to their favorite entry a Costume Designers Guild trophy designed and crafted by Thingergy, the premier special FX costume/prop/make-up shop in Burbank Calif. plus a $500 gift certificate from International Silks and Woolens in Los Angeles! The CDG is Local 892 of the International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employees and represents costume designers, assistant costume designers, and costume illustrators working at the highest levels of expertise in motion pictures, TV, commercials, music videos, and new media.
- Comic-Con International will present a special award given in memory of a long-time Committee and Board member Alan Campbell, who passed away and is sorely missed. Alan was a great fan of the Masquerade, at times generously donating his own prize. The Alan Campbell Award will be $500 cash, presented to the entry deemed Best Re-Creation of a Comics Character or Characters, as selected by a representative of the Board of Directors.
For those hoping to simply watch the competition, as always, free tickets will be available starting at 12pm PT on Saturday to those lining up near Ballroom 20, and available again from 3pm-5pm at the Masquerade Desk until all are given out.
You can find more information about the Masquerade on Comic-Con International’s website.
What do you think about the new rules? Let us know in the comments.