London Film & Comic Con (LFCC), Showmasters flagship event, has now passed and Star Wars Sessions were lucky enough to attend as accredited press and exhibitors and to have our own dedicated booth at the event in the Star Wars Zone!
Held at Olympia London, LFCC brings stars from film, television, comics, cosplay, and podcasts together as well as focusing on photo ops, autograph sessions, the odd panel and plenty of pop culture merch and art stalls to browse. This year’s event took place between July 8th-10th and promised to host nearly 100,000 attendees – and we can say, at times, it felt like double that amount!
We were set up in the specially organised Star Wars Zone alongside our friends and fellow creators Fantha Tracks (yes, including NEWBOOOOLD), Generation Skywalker (with Jez AKA The Running Stormtrooper in tow), All the Cool Stuff (including zone organiser Dave Tree), and Jamie Richards (Lucasfilm-approved artist). Also present were the team from Original Stormtrooper Coffee, Mon-Cal Carnival Fundraising Team (Paula and Andrew), and the man with the snakiest hips this side of Dagobah…Darth Elvis. We can’t lie, it was probably THE place to be during the entire convention.
Over the three days we had the pleasure of meeting old and new listeners alike (whilst also converting the majority of the attendees to the Sessions!) which was a massive highlight of the event. Having fans from all over the world approach the booth to tell us they had come looking for us was simply amazing (and there were some superb accents to boot). We will never not be humbled and surprised when people tell us they listen – it’s not something we take for granted.
Being able to hang out in our little section with fans was a fantastic experience, but, not just fans, anyone that also looked as if they had the slightest amount of interest in our favourite space opera. Some were drawn in by Luke’s fabulous hair or Matt’s winning smile, but most were drawn in by the SWS Wheel of Death. Trust us, a brightly coloured wheel attracts people like a moth to a flame. The wheel was adorned with challenges that must be completed in order to win a prize – challenges including Fighting Talk, Duel, Music, Trivia, and Impressions (all Star Wars-themed) – and the prizes ranged from a classic Freddo bar up to Black Series figures. Now, we must admit the Black Series were pretty much reserved for the kids and seeing the joy on their faces as they took home a figure made the weekend more than worthwhile.
There were times when we left our sanctuary and roamed the busy floors of the conventions, however. Once we were able to wade past the throng of Hellfire Club t-shirts, we had the opportunity to chat with Star Wars cast members about their experiences in the franchise and of being in London. During the weekend we had the pleasure of interviewing Tom O’Connell (Darth Vader stunt performer – Obi-Wan Kenobi), Dorian Kingi (Cad Bane – The Book of Boba Fett), Garrick Hagon (Biggs Darklighter – A New Hope), Christine Galey (R2-D2 – The Mandalorian, The Book of Boba Fett), Lauren Mary Kim (Ahsoka Tano motion capture – The Clone Wars), and Misty Rosas (Kuill, Frog Lady – The Mandalorian). Each bought their own awesome stories of working on Star Wars and they can be heard in our LFCC Main Show.
Also in attendance at the convention (that we knew of, anyway…) were Adam Christopher (author of Shadow of the Sith), Dee Tails (Cratinus – The Force Awakens, Quay Tolsite – Solo), Ross Sambridge (Snoke – The Last Jedi), Samantha Alleyne (the first female stormtrooper – the last five Star Wars movies), and Brian Herring (BB-8 puppeteer – Sequel Trilogy). It was a joy to meet new faces and catch up with some familiar to the Sessions. Keep your ears peeled for further discussions with Adam Christopher…
Whilst we didn’t get the opportunity to chat with everyone at the convention, some of the main draws were Katee Sackhoff, Simon Kassianedes, Andy Serkis, Robert Englund, Joseph Quinn, and David Harbour. It wasn’t through lack of trying, mind, but you win some, you lose some. Now would also be the time to mention that the most popular guest of the convention was, by far, Joseph Quinn, fresh off his guitar-shredding exploits in Stranger Things season four.
No convention would be complete without the fantastic cosplayers and groups that add so much to proceedings. Huge shoutout to Lilly Cosplay, King Kosplay, Mando Mercs, Rebel Legion UK, Vok’Chi Clan, Faux BoJo, KSJD Cosplay, She Walks in Starlight, and Kemir’a Clan amongst many, many others for helping to make the event so colourful and interactive. Hearing (and joining in with) a raucous football chant ring our as “Boris Johnson” ambed into The Hand & Flower will never not be a fun memory to look back on.
Long-time listeners of the Sessions know that we love a curry. Can’t get enough of the stuff. Conveniently for us, literally across the road from the Olympia was Miran Masala – the place to go for Pakistani Punjabi cuisine. We can tell you right now, the curry was banging. We ordered a simple butter chicken, owing to the chef’s recommendation, and man was it good! It was so good (sooooo goooood) that the following evening we arrived with an entourage including all of the named fiends above from the Star Wars Zone. Genuinely can’t recommend this place high enough if you are ever nearby and are clacking for a good curry.
The weekend as a whole was absolutely knackering – we both ended the weekend with sore feet, hoarse throats, and aching muscles – but, as far as Sessions events go, it was one of the best. Dishing out our pod cards (“business cards”), badges, and stickers by their thousands was excellent in terms of getting the show out there to even more people, but, again, just meeting so many wonderful people across the three days really bought it all home for us both and we want to thank everyone who came to chat with us over the weekend. Hanging out with our fellow Star Wars Zone buddies during and after the event was a blast, beer, curry, chat…bliss.
To all of you that attended…you guys helped to make the event extra special and we hope you enjoyed our company as much as we enjoyed yours.
We left Olympia with plenty of memories, stories, and new friends. We’d call that another happy landing.
Check out our gallery for more of our LFCC adventures…
Huge thanks to Dave Tree for organising the Star Wars Zone, and to Jez and the gang for being supportive and just top lads in general. Also…”NEWBOOOOOLD”.