Annual pop culture convention San Diego Comic-Con has announced this year’s event will be virtual.
The convention usually attracts about 130,000 fans to Southern California, where Hollywood studios unveil upcoming film and TV projects.
It is a major date in the entertainment diary.
Last year’s in-person event was cancelled due to the pandemic, and organisers have confirmed the 2021 show in July will also be virtual.
However, Comic-Con did reveal it is planning a physical event in San Diego in November.
Comic-Con said in a statement: “It is the policy of the organisation to continue to closely monitor information from local and national healthcare officials as it pertains to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Never could we have imagined what the world experienced in 2020 and continues to experience today.
“While we are buoyed by the rollout of the vaccine and the growing number of individuals being inoculated, it appears that July will still be too early to safely hold an in-person event of the magnitude of Comic-Con.”
July’s event will also be smaller than previous years, Comic-Con said, and will only last for three days rather than the usual four.
The organisation blamed the previous postponements for leaving it with “limited financial resources”.
It said November’s three-day event in San Diego is still in the planning stage and further information will be forthcoming.
Comic-Con added: “The past several months have taken a great toll on both families and friends, and we hope this effort is a small move toward a return to gathering as a community to not only celebrate popular art, but also friendship, education and the enduring spirit of the fandom that is so much a part of Comic-Con.
“We thank you all for your continued and unwavering support during these most challenging times.”
San Diego Comic-Con’s virtual event will run from July 23-25.