Netflix, Disney, HBO & More Pull Out Of Comic-Con As Threat Of Actor Strike Looms

San Diego Comic-Con 2023 will have significantly fewer panels this year as companies pull out ahead of a potential SAG-AFTRA strike. Currently, the industry is being rocked by the ongoing writers’ strike, which began on May 2 when negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers failed to reach a compromise that offered writers fair compensation, among other pressing issues including streaming residuals and restrictions on the use of AI. The screen actor’s guild SAG-AFTRA is currently approaching a potential strike as well, should negotiations not be completed by June 30.


Per Variety, multiple companies have pulled out of participating in this year’s San Diego Comic Con in anticipation of a strike, which would prevent actors from appearing as part of panels or any other promotional engagements. Studios that have pulled out of the event either largely or in its entirety include Disney (and thus Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm), HBO, Sony Pictures, Universal Pictures, and Netflix. This will preempt panels from anticipated series and movies including Loki season 2, Ahsoka, Kraven the Hunter, The Exorcist, One Piece, and House of the Dragon, among many others.

What Comic-Con Could Look Like This Year

Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Kraven the Hunter from the movie's trailer.

For many years, Comic-Con panels and presentations have provided pop culture fans with behind-the-scenes insights, major announcements, and trailers for huge upcoming television and movie properties. However, this year things will likely look different. While the comic book and cosplay sectors of the convention will largely be unaffected by this change, this year the halls may still feel relatively barren.

Although many studios have preemptively backed out, there are still certain studios and streamers who are either on the fence or have a few presentations planned. Amazon Studios will be present to promote The Wheel of Time season 2 and The Boys: Gen V in some capacity. Other entities that could be present include Warner Bros., Max, Paramount Pictures, NBC, and their streaming service Peacock.

If the SAG-AFTRA strike goes forward, more of these studios will drop out. However, some will merely move forward with compromised panel slates, finding other ways to promote their comic-derived, sci-fi/fantasy, or animated projects. Whatever happens, however, Comic-Con 2023 is going to be an entirely different experience than anticipated this year.

Source: Variety

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