Armageddon ripped off
$60 for selfies with stars Plus: NZ’s biggest geeks
Sci-fi stars Christina Ricci, Shannen Doherty and Michael Shanks wil be charging fans $60 for a selfie at next weekend’s Armageddon expo.
The event at Auckland’s ASB Showgrounds will see 70,000 sci-fi and fantasy enthusiasts filter through its gates, many enticed by the appearance of their on-screen heroes in the flesh.
But actually meeting headline stars Christina Ricci of The Addams Family, Shannen Doherty of Charmed or actor Michael Shanks of Stargate SG-1 TV series, will cost you $50 for an autograph and an additional $60 for a photo.
Fans would have to queue in separate lines for a selfie and an autograph which could involve up to a sixhour wait.
But up to 60 keen fans who want a guaranteed autograph and photo from all their favourites as well as being able to skip the lines could pay $1249 for an ultra pass, including fourday access.
Armageddon expo spokeswoman Courtney Collins said autograph and photo fees were typically negotiated through a convention agent who booked celebrity guests for expos worldwide.
“Everybody comes with different things in their contract,” Collins said.
“There are some guests, perhaps they’re in a big movie franchise, or they have multiple roles. They’re often the ones who cost quite a bit more.
“That’s often something that’s stipulated in their contracts when they come to us. But the majority of our guests are placed at $30-$40.”
I’ve seen it first-hand. The queues for the popular ones are right out the door. Rochelle Scoones, Armageddon exhibitor
And the expo always has some guests signing for free so that fans could “interact with the guests”, she said.
This year, 18 of the 31 guests would freely sign autographs including Gregg Berger, the voice of Odie from the Garfield franchise and The Gromble from Aaahh!!! Real Monsters and Sarah Craven from Star Wars Uprising and One Punch Man.
Collins said she had “never really had any complaints” about the fees.
“I think the people who are buying autographs and photos understand there are different prices for different people, because this is how different shows overseas operate as well, and $40, our basic cost for them, is relatively cheap in comparison to events overseas,” Collins said.
At the US Comic-Con expo autographs from William Shatner of Star Trek were reported to cost $115 while New Zealand’s own Lucy Lawless of Xena: Warrior Princess charged $130 and Marvel comics editor Stan Lee went for $153.
Fans with more cash to spare could also pay $300 for a photo and video with Mark Hamill who played Luke Skywalker in Star Wars.
Rochelle Scoones would have a stall for her Auckland business Retrospace — Sci-Fi Collectables at the expo, and said expo autographs was a talking point among fans.
“I’ve seen it first-hand. The queues for the popular ones are right out the door and you’ll be queuing easily three hours,” Scoones said.
“It might be $50 for an autograph but the poor punters have to queue maybe three hours for those autographs — in line to get a photo, then back in line to get the photo signed.
“So you have to have a huge commitment to be a fan of what you’re queuing for. That’s only one guest star. If you want to go back you’re going to spend the whole weekend queuing for certain autographs.
“But that’s what die-hard fans are all about.” Armageddon Expo is on at the ASB Showgrounds, Greenlane, October 19-22.
Charmed star Shannen Doherty will be at Armageddon.