IN PHOTOS: Awesome stars, cool toys, cosplayers, and more at ToyCon 2016
MANILA, Philippines – ToyCon has always been one of Manila's most anticipated events, for the toy and collectible hobbyists, pop culture enthusiasts, cosplayers, and more. This year, June 10 to 12, the annual convention rolled out bigger than before – moving from its previous home in SM Megamall to the cavernous SMX Convention Center.
Indeed, what a way to celebrate this milestone with astounding exhibitions and a lineup of international celebrity guests. Beyond just an event, this year's ToyCon highlighted how much it has grown as a community of pop culture fans.
From the cool toys and collectibles to the people we met, let's take a look back – in photos – on what went on at this year's ToyCon.
Celebrity guests not only took time to speak and take questions from the fans but also gamely posed for selfies and signed autographs for them.
Game of Thrones fans were excited to meet Hodor in the flesh: Kristian Nairn. To everyone's delight, the actor was definitely more talkative than his character – addressing that tragic "Hold the door" scene, sharing his love for Warcraft, and talking about his music career. (READ: 'Game of Thrones' star Kristian Nairn: 18 fun facts about the Hodor actor and DJ)
While talking to the press last June 10, Kristian admitted that he found it hot in this tropical nation. However, he also said, "You guys are really sweet, it's really nice to be here. I've met a lot of really nice people since I came here, so thank you very much."
One incarnation of Clark Kent-slash-Superman also flew in: Dean Cain, the star of '90s TV show Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman.
Dean even confessed that Batman v Superman wasn't very enjoyable. "I enjoyed Deadpool a lot more than I liked Batman v Superman. Ryan Reynolds killed that. He was great. He was amazing. It was witty, and it was fun. That's what that film [Batman v Superman] didn't have. I sort of prefer that."
From a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, Daniel Logan, the actor who played the young version of bounty hunter Boba Fett, kept his energy at peak for the fans. He would stand up from his stool to go down the stage and go up close to take questions from the crowd.
Proud of his New Zealander heritage, he even did a Maori haka.
Two members of the wolf pack from the Twilight saga, Kiowa Gordon and Bronson Pelletier – who played Embry Call and Jared Cameron, respectively – also made an appearance.
The cast of the revamped and rebooted Encantadia also thrilled encantadiks (as they call themselves), as they appeared onstage in full costume on Saturday, June 11. (IN PHOTOS: 'Encantadia' 2016 cast at ToyCon PH 2016)
Thai actor Mario Maurer charmed fans of his work on screen, and at ToyCon, he signed little Funko Pop! toys made in his image. Many of his fans wanted to take a selfie with him, and he gladly obliged.
Two of the lead actors from the popular historical biopic Heneral Luna, Mon Confiado (Emilio Aguinaldo) and John Arcilla himself, showed up in costume to engage with fans at the venue. The actors also sold and signed DVDs of their movie.
Marvel icon Stan Lee spoke to the Manila crowd via Skype last June 11 – amusing, just like his cameo appearances in the movies.
As he explained that the creation of superheroes takes several steps from identifying a superpower to writing the story, he joked, "That's why I look so old because I've been doing that for a long time. I'm still in my 20s…"
There was even a whole exhibit, called the Stan Lee Excelsior Exhibition, set up to showcase items signed by Stan himself and some movie stars: comic books, props from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and more.
There were also several music acts to keep the crowd entertained with a variety of sounds: R&B from Frankie J, indie pop rock from Heffron Drive (which includes Kendall Schmidt, the star of Nickelodeon's Big Time Rush), J-Pop acts Yanakiku and Electric Ribbon.
Cosplayers came in droves, donning intricate (sometimes homemade) costumes of characters from movies, TV shows, comic books, games, and the like.
Among them, the Jedi and Sith from Fightsaber Philippines amazed the ToyCon crowd, who watched them show off their mastery of battling and dueling with lightsabers.
Convention-goers also got a chance to look like a walker from The Walking Dead with award-winning US-based face and body artist Sammie Bartko.
Of course, what's a ToyCon without the toys for the little kids, the young-at-heart, and collectors?
There are towering ones you can't literally bring home, such as the Voltes V replica that is immediately seen from the gates.
There were even dolls made in the image of President-elect Rodrigo Duterte.
Were you there at ToyCon? Tell us about your cool finds and awesome experiences in the comments below. – Rappler.com
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