Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

New Shows, Stars Join Collective Con Setlist

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

New Shows, Stars Join Collective Con Setlist

Article excerpt

Byline: Tiffanie Reynolds

Heading into its third year, organizers of Collective Con traveled all the way to the Upside Down to invite its lineup of celebrity guests to Jacksonville.

The event features guests such as Millie Bobby Brown and Noah Schnapp, who play Eleven and Will Byers on the Netflix series "Stranger Things," Graham McTavish of "The Hobbit," "Outlander" and "Preacher" - among other movies - and Jessica Lucas, who plays Tabitha Galavan on the television series "Gotham."

"It's so much fun for me to meet all the fans that love the show so much. I wouldn't be doing what I am doing today if it wasn't for all the love and support I get from them," said Noah Schnapp in an email interview about Collective Con. "So I feel really grateful, honestly, and sometimes a bit amazed at everyone's reaction!"

Schnapp's character Will Byers is kidnapped in the beginning of season one on "Stranger Things" and taken to the Upside Down, which is what other characters call the place that the villain of the show resides.

Collective Con will be happening March 24-26 at the Morocco Shrine Center. True to its name, the convention includes celebrities and events about sci-fi, comics, fantasy, gaming, anime and cosplay throughout all three days.

Anime fans can expect to see voice actors Johnny Yong Bosch, Eric Vale and Kari Wahlgren, as well as artist Mitsuhiro Arita for "Pokemon" and "Final Fantasy XI." Margot Kidder, who played Lois Lane in the "Superman" movie series, and comic artists Bob Layton, John Beatty, Clay Mann, Seth Mann and Jeremy Clark will also be in attendance for comic book fans.

Christopher Major started organizing Collective Con with Jason Lewis and Michael Yokan around 2012. Major already had experience organizing Ocala Comic Con, and all three wanted to bring a large pop-culture convention experience to Jacksonville.

The name Collective Con was born out of their goal to include as many genres of interest as possible.

"I just thought it would be cool to have a fan event where any type of fan could go and there would be something in their genre of interest that they would like," said Major. …

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