Star Wars Celebration: Chicago is rapidly approaching. If you’re one of the fans lucky enough to have been able to get tickets, you’ll have a slew of panels from which to choose. Among them is a 20th anniversary Phantom Menace panel. More recently the event added Star Wars: Episode IX and Mandalorian panels. If you want to see them, however, may the Force be with you. You’re going to need it.
The biggest complaint about Star Wars Celebrations past is that fans often had to wait hours, in extraordinary lines, in order to gain access to panel discussions. That left fans disappointed, and often angry. Limited capacity theaters often meant that fans spent all that time for nothing. Therefore, this year Lucasfilm announced via StarWars.com that it is implementing a new panel reservation system at this year’s Star Wars Celebration: Chicago. It’s designed to provide fans with easier access to the attractions they’d like to see. Although… that may not necessarily be the case.
New Panel Reservation System for Star Wars Celebration: Chicago
Lucasfilm had this to say about the new reservation system for Star Wars Celebration in Chicago:
StarWars.com is excited to announce LIGHTSPEED Virtual Panel Reservations and LIGHTSPEED Lane Virtual Queuing presented by ThinkGeek: new systems that will make access to Celebration Chicago’s biggest panels, show store, and exhibitor exclusives easier than ever before.”
The website goes on to provide an overview of the process. Fans can essentially pre-register for certain panels (happening at the Galaxy and Twin Suns stages). However, if you want to learn about The Mandalorian, or see anything else happening on the main Celebration stage, you’re going to have to register for an advanced lottery system. This may not sit well with all Star Wars Celebration: Chicago goers.
Sure, the long lines and camping out weren’t much fun. Those willing to wait, however, were rewarded for their efforts. Now it’s a complete crap-shoot as to whether you’ll get to see either the Episode IX or Mandalorian panels at all. For what fans have spent on five-day tickets, leaving it up to chance is probably not the best answer. You can see more information on the lottery system HERE.
Stay tuned here to That Hashtag Show in the coming days for more information on Star Wars Celebration: Chicago, including information on the full panel line-up.