EL PASO, TX - Another announced guest for El Paso Comic Con's March event won't be coming to the Sun City.
Actress Shannon Elizabeth announced via Twitter on Feb. 21 that she was not attending El Paso in Comics (EPIC). EPIC is set for March 7-9 at the El Paso County Coliseum.
J. Edwards, with Elizabeth's production company Ganesh Productions Inc., said Elizabeth's team was first contacted last week about attending EPIC.
"The El Paso Comic Con has been advertising since November, from what we can tell, that Shannon was going to attend. She had tweeted once before that she had never even heard of it, much less agreed to attend," Edwards said in an email to ABC-7. "Last week someone from Shannon's camp was finally contacted by a local El Paso agent to try and officially book her. Because of all of the past problems in the press that were found online regarding people getting paid & false advertising by the event promoter, Julian Lawler, Shannon's team had firm conditions that would have to be met to protect her. Because they would not meet those conditions and the fact that they have been false advertising her for months and using her photo without her consent, her team informed them that she would not be attending and asked that they cease promoting her as an attendee. They had also seen where the event was promoting Eddie Griffin as attending and hosting and how he and his team firmly responded that that was also a lie. Shannon would have loved to attend, seeing as that's her home state."24605270
EPCON on Feb. 20 posted on its Facebook page that, "Just so everyone understands Shannon Elizabeth will NOT be at EPIC 2014. We will have a replacement shortly."24605726
A source with knowledge of the proposal said Elizabeth asked for at least a 10 percent deposit on her guarantee but when EPCON did not come up with it, Elizabeth decided not to attend EPIC.
Listen to KLAQ's Morning Show interview Lawler at http://bit.ly/1miXxLi
EPCON had announced on Feb. 8 on its Facebook page that actor/comedian Eddie Griffin would host EPIC.
Ann Flagella, president and CFO of Front of the Bus Inc. which books Griffin's appearances, said in email to ABC-7 Feb. 9 that, "No he will not be in El Paso. This is a lie."
EPCON's founder and promoter Julian Lawler said in a Feb. 9 email to ABC-7 asking for comment, that "Mr. Griffin is scheduled to be here March 8 and 9."
In a second email to ABC-7 on Feb. 9, Flagella denied Griffin would be in El Paso at all March 7-9, stating Griffin "will be in London until the 10th."
ABC-7 asked Lawler in the Feb. 9 email requesting comment on the Griffin situation if other announced guests for EPIC are coming to El Paso and how many of the announced guests for EPIC are already signed and under contract to appear at EPIC.
Lawler only answered the question about Griffin appearing in El Paso. Announced guests for EPIC include Elizabeth, Charles Baker, Michael Jai White, Dave Barclay, Corey Dee Williams, Deep Roy, Stephen Costantino, and Erik Bauersfeld.
A few comments questioning Griffin's appearance were either hidden or deleted from EPCON's Feb. 8 Facebook post on his appearance and EPCON posted the comment "If you don't have nothing positive to post, pls stay off our page. Thank you."
One comment by a Kevin Marshburn, captured in a screengrab shortly after noon Sunday, said "guys the posters look nice but how can we know for sure that this wont be another mass walkout from celebs?"
Early on Feb. 10, EPCON posted on its Facebook page that it was removing Griffin's picture.
"Considering today's drama over the Eddie Griffin announcement, we're going to take his image off the FB page," an EPCON Facebook post reads. "Sometimes several agents are used to book shows and they are not always on the same page. So we think its safer to take it down until all the details are sorted out. Until today we were not aware Mr. Griffin had a show on March 7th in London, of all places! So stay tuned...we are still looking forward to an excellent show."
EPCON 2013 Issues
EPCON 2013's headliner Michael Rooker, of "The Walking Dead" fame, was announced long before the September date but then cancelled due to filming of "Guardians of the Galaxy." Another "Walking Dead" actor, IronE Singleton, also cancelled his appearance at EPCON 2013.
Lawler told ABC-7 in an email on Feb. 12, "We had a contract for Irone Singleton and he chose to not to come. He is in violation of our agreement yet Epcon continually has to defend itself against his no-show. There is no way we can force anyone to appear at our events. All we can do is make an offer and bound by their signature expect to have them here."
A Facebook post on Singleton's Facebook page on Sept. 29, 2013 stated:
"Dear El Paso, TX/Epcon attendees,Unfortunately after much effort, Epcon promotor(s) @ElPasoComicCon and I could not come to a mutual agreement and secure all requirements within a timely fashion. I greatly regret that I was not able to meet and greet my fans in El Paso this past weekend as I was very much looking forward to the opportunity to be there. I sincerely appreciate all the love and support from my fans and hope to have the opportunity to connect with you at a future event."
EPCON 2012 Issues
Some actors who were guests at EPCON in 2012 claimed they did not get paid according to their contracts.
Michael Biehn, known for his roles in "Terminator," "Aliens," and "Tombstone," and his wife, actress Jennifer Blanc-Biehn told ABC-7 in Sept. 2012 they did not get paid the full amount according to their contract and said other actors also were not paid the full amount. Read more on this dispute at http://bit.ly/1iDJ5vW and http://bit.ly/LNtXjz
Early on Sept. 12, 2012- EPCON organizers announced via their Facebook page that Marina Sirtis, Dave Prowse, and McKenzie Westmore were no longer coming to EPCON.
"McKenzie Westmore is still filming Face/Off and cannot get away....even though she made every attempt to attend. It's unfortunate but we still have plenty of awesome guests!" the EPCOn Facebook post stated.
A Feb. 12, 2014 email from Lawler regarding Westmore's 2012 cancellation referred to an email from Westmore's management that Westmore "was advised after February 2012, that the "Face Off" filming schedule prohibited her attendance to EPCON 2012."
On Aug. 16, 2012, EPCON posted on Facebook that everyone who attends a Masquerade Ball at Tricky Falls would be registered for a cosplay contest with Westmore.
On Sept. 12, 2012, just days before EPCON, Prowse, the actor who physically portrayed Darth Vader in the Star Wars films, said he would not be making it to EPCON as he had been billed for several months on the official EPCON website and on its Facebook page.
Prowse, however, told a different story.
"Please note Dave is not appearing at EPCON in El Paso," a statement read on Prowse's website on Sept. 12, 2012. "Dave had not heard anything from the organizer and we removed the event from this appearance page ages ago. The show organizer has been aware that Dave is not a guest at the show for a while. We sent several requests to the organizer to inform ticket buyers that Dave is not attending the show so that fans do not show up to see Dave and be disappointed. They did not do that. We requested again today that they post something to ticket buyers and they posted that Dave is a last minute cancellation, which is not true. We posted an explanation to fans on the EPCON facebook page, but our post was deleted and we are now blocked from posting the explanation again. If you are a ticket holder for this show, please accept Dave's apologies for any inconvenience caused, but this is the fault of the organizer and not Mr. Prowse."
A later post on EPCON's Facebook page elaborated on Prowse not appearing at the convention.
"For the record, Dave Prowse did not cancel on EPCON 2012....we've hand some problems with his overall arrangements and we knew for some time that his trip was not going to be possible....but we held out hoping it could be arranged last minute. But alas....it didn't work out. All of our obligations to the Sith Lord will be met and hopefully we can schedule him another visit to the Sun City. Stay tuned!" EPCON said in that Facebook status.