Tightened Security delays Program; Cagayan De Oro Cosplay Duo wins ToRCh, Books flight to Singapore’s AFA11 Cosplay.
Amid the tight security and the hordes of people who came, Cosplay Mania’s second day was as successful as the first day with the crowning of the Philippines’ representative to Anime Festival Asia’s cosplay competition.
Team March Omega from the City of Golden Friendship, Cagayan De Oro, bested 7 other finalists in the main highlight of Sunday’s event, the Cosplay Tournament of Champions.
Event-goers were baffled at the long line outside the SMX Convention Center after the SMX Security personnel checked all the bags and other belongings of everyone.
Ballpens, Sharp objects and perfumes were among those prohibited inside the convention hall. The increased security was done in light of the recent events that happened in the SM Malls this past weeks.
Cosplay.ph, the organizers of Cosplay Mania, decided to delay the program for a considerable amount of time so that the crowd will be able to witness the event in its entirety.
The Costume Building Contest was one of the side events of Day 2, where different teams had only four hours to build and create costumes using recycled materials. The contest started at 12 noon and the costumes were finished at 4pm.
Among the judges of the CBC was noted comic book illustrator Wilson Tortosa and one of the international guests, Clive Lee.
Lee was impressed at how Filipinos can create costumes in just a small amount of time.
“I’ve never seen someone make such impressive costumes in such a short time, It’s my first time [judging the CBC], I’m totally in awe and I’d say, I cannot do that, definitely” Lee said in an interview with ZEN.
Then came Project Cosplay: Group Category, where six different cosplay groups showed their skills and prowess to the judges, which included noted Filipino cosplayer Jin Joson, alongside with the other international cosplayer guests Natthar Janjarhatsin or more popularly known as Yuki Godbless and Jiaki Darkness, whose real name is Charnon Porngarunathikul.
After the groups, the main event, the Cosplay Tournament of Champions, started with much anticipation and support from the thousands in attendance at the main stage located at the Function Hall 5.
The eight champions represented the eight areas where the Tournament of Champions regional legs were held.
They were Team OTL from Cebu, Team .hack//GU from Baguio, Team Enigma from Davao, Team Bankai from Bacolod, Team Code 33 from North Metro (SM North EDSA), Team Zoids Battlefront from South Metro (SM Southmall), Team March Omega from Cagayan De Oro and Team Vostel from Central and West Metro (SM City Manila)
“Their standard is very, very high, we had a very very tough time. Compared to last year, the standards were specifically higher, All these teams can go on an international level and be competitive” Lee said.
“Everyone’s putting a lot of effort, I can see that, and everyone did their best” Owyang said
Visible crowd favorites were Team Enigma, Team Vostel, and Team March Omega. Team .hack//GU, meanwhile, had a technical malfunction midway during their performance and had to cut it short to fix their costume. They were given a second chance after the last team performed.
After the ToRCh, Cosplay.ph Head Pablo Bairan confirmed to everyone in the hall that Two international guests will be visiting Cosplay Mania 2012, They will be the noted Japanese Cosplayer Kaname and the Chinese costume maker Yaya Han.
“By the way, those two, its not a rumor, it’s not a conjecture, it’s a fact that Yaya Han and Kaname have confirmed that they will be coming to Cosplay Mania 12.” he said.
Before the ToRCh winners were announced. Bairan informed everyone in the hall that in the Philippine Cosplay Appreciation Day, where Cosplay Mania is trying to break the world record for the most number of people in Cosplay, was a success, with 940 total cosplayers participating and listed their names.
The list will be submitted to the Guinness Book of World Records for verification.
March Omega won by a margin of only 1.4 % from Team Vostel.
“When we said epic, we meant epic. Talagang epic yung event, there were people coming in from as far as China, Malaysia, Singapore, Meron din tayo from the US. It is a big event and I think it will put Philippines in the cosplay map.” Bairan told ZEN after the event.
The head of Cosplay.ph also said that they are considering expanding the ToRCh in two unnamed areas, but it will depend on the support of everyone and also the sponsors.
“We will see what we can do next year, if we can get more sponsors.” He said.
He was also impressed with the Cosplayers who competed in Project Cosplay and ToRCh, saying that Filipino cosplayers are now getting better.
“A lot of people are now getting into it, because they are seeing for what it is, It is a healthy and a creative hobby” Bairan added.
Bairan revealed that they are also going for a bigger and better Cosplay Mania next year, though they will keep it under wraps as of the moment and urged everyone to check their website.
“I want to thank everyone who went to Cosplay Mania, despite the rain, despite the typhoon, despite the adversities, like I said, Filipino Cosplay is about overcoming it’s adversity, We’d come across different obstacles, manage to surpass them, We’ve managed to exceed our expectations and that was only possible through your support.” Bairan overwhelmingly said.
The full interviews with the Participants, the Winners, the International Guests, Ms. Jin Joson and Mr. Pablo Bairan will be posted later on the Website.
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