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Crown Championhips of Cosplay 2016 (Behind the Scenes)

This year it has been quite an honor to be selected at the local qualifying round of Crown Championships of Cosplay. To find out more about my journey and see a few behind the scenes from making my Galacta cosplay, click here. For those not familiar with "The Crown" - this is a prestigious, world-wide competition held by Reed Pop in which they select the best of the best when it comes to cosplay around the world. Hundreds competed in Chicago alone, and only 31 were selected. If you want to see the full line up for Chicago's qualifying round, please click here.

The contest was held on March 19, 2016 at 7pm CST with live streaming via

Regional finalist from France, Australia, Indonesia, Austria (to name a few) are among the finalists that flew to Chicago for the big event to battle it out on stage. Here are the judges (Photo taken from

Photo taken from

Check out our behind the scenes pictures from the event and get to see the competitors before and after the ceremony. (Thank you, Malmey Studios, for some of the pics! The folks from Malmey participated in the competition, with their amazing Darkwing Duck cosplay. :) )

I had a chance to interview some of the crowd's favorites! Abraham, Vicentius, and Nabil (from the international contestant pool), Christine (aka @ShiningPolairs) from the Chicago finalists, and Sarah (aka @PepperMonster), who's from New York but enjoys traveling to Chicago for C2E2.

Getting to know Abraham more, it turns out that he's from my home country - the Philippines! Abraham happens to be a doctor, and cosplaying is something he does on his spare time. He is a part of (M.A.R.C.H. Philippines). I asked him a few questions regarding his experience:


M: Was this your first time competing in a World Championship Cosplay competition?

Abraham: Yep! First time competing in a "world" level competition but not my first time outside the Philippines. I've competed twice in Asian level competitions (Asia Cosplay Meet-champion and AFA Regional Cosplay Championship-1st runner up) and once in Indonesia ( Indonesia Comic Con where I qualified for the Chamionship of Cosplay)

M: How does it feel to represent your region/country?

Abraham: it's always an honor to represent the Philippines and this time I also represented Indonesia/Indonesia Comic Con. It always feels like a lot of pressure but Ive gotten used to working in these high pressure situations. It's a humbling experience to represent a region because I know there are many better cosplays but my work was selected. Everytime I compete for my country I feel like I carry the hopes of the community that supports me. Once again, a bit stressful but I'm ok with it. Haha

M: What was the highlight of your experience at C2E2?

Abraham: It's hard to tell! The whole experience was just so amazing. The con itself was so cool because everything was so big and I saw so much stuff I couldn't see in the Philippines. The Championship of Cosplay was also a great experience. Even if I didn't place, I met so many awe inspiring cosplayers and people. I hope I can compete again next year.

M: Tell us about your cosplay and what do you like most about it?

Abraham: The character I cosplayed is Vicious Summoner from Dekaron (which is a Korean MMORPG). I usually choose costumes with lots of detail. I like the combination of color and details in the costume. I also like how challenging it was to build the entire costume which required a lot of mental and physical effort.

M: Were there any hurdles that you experience during the entire process of getting to C2E2, like travelling with your cosplay, etc.?

Abraham: Yes, a few hurdles. First was actually qualifying. There's no Philippine qualifier so I had to fly to Indonesia to qualify for it. Then there was getting a visa and a new passport. Visa rules in the Philippines are strict and the application was expensive. Also waiting for the visa interview takes a long time to schedule (2-3 months after application) We also had a problem travelling because the baggage was restricted to 4 pieces and we had to compress everything to make it fit. Upon arriving into the US, many parts of the costume had to be repaired. It all came out good tho.

Vicentius is from Indonesia and won STGCC (Singapore Toy and Game Convention) and he was also one of the international competitors who flew in for the event.

M: Was this your first time competing in a World Championship Cosplay competition?

Vicentius: Yes this is my first time to be competing in a World Championship Cosplay Competition. There were no hurdles for me during the entire process of getting to the C2E2.

M: How does it feel to represent your region/country?

Vicentious: It was truly an honor for me, to be able to represent my country in such a prestigious competition. It was an amazing experience for me.

M: What was the highlight of your experience at C2E2?

Vicentius: The highlight of C2E2 were while we were on the backstage, every contestants were having a joke and talking with each other while waiting for their turn to be on stage. Everybody in the event were very friendly and it made such a great,warm and fun event to be in.

M: Tell us about your cosplay and what do you like most about it?

Vicentius: The first time I knew cosplay was when I saw a cosplay performance from team Machipot Indonesia, which until now I am a part of them. We are a team cosplay with a speciality in performance skit. I am very happy because every kid must have been dreaming to be a superhero or their favorite film character from their childhood, and I can make that come true. I'm so proud and happy with cosplay, I can experience new things and be friends with other people. So.. As long as we cosplayed, we will meet again..

Of course the competition isn't complete without something crazy happening. Nabil - one of the world cosplay finalists, encountered a dilemma on his first time competing in the world cosplay championships.

M: Were there any hurdles that you experience during the entire process of getting to C2E2, like travelling with your cosplay, etc.?

Nabil: As a matter of fact, there were quite a few hurdles on my way here. First, there was was the case of my costume being misplaced by the airlines , and I got my costume just 30 minutes before the competition- it takes a minimum of 24 hours to assemble all the elements of the costume. So I wasn't able to compete in the competition but just the energy of the crowd made me forget the entire scenario.

My Cosplay was a 10 feet wide 12 feet high - Dr. Octavious, with over 2,000 LEDs , motors , smoke machine and various movements. The character is from Spiderman 2. I chose the character because I could relate to it. It was an anti-hero kinda thing which appealed to me.

It was a matter of pride representing 1.2 billion people (from India) on the world stage. (I) was just a disappointed that I was out of the race even before it started.

M: Do you have any highlights during your first C2E2 experience?

Nabil: There were many highlights - meeting one of my idols, Yaya Han, and then meeting all the other fabulous cosplayers. Picking up new tricks and skills to work on my cosplay. Moreover, the energy and vibe of the crowd just made me happy. Something which made me feel like I belonged there.

I have known Christine (aka @ShiningPolaris) for about a year now. She hails from the Chicago-land area and we have a lot of friends in common. This is her 2nd year competing.

M: Being in the competition for the second year in a row, what did you look forward to the most about being a part of it this year?

Christine: I entered the Crown because it is a way for me to make one ultimate cosplay! I use that opportunity to push myself and to test my skills in costume making. I look forward to the costumes, of course! Such great mix of medias and genres! I love seeing what people think up! Also, I look forward to see how many of my friends get accepted! Because I love sharing my experience with someone that is also going through it!

M: You're one of the few contestants who always enter unique versions of cosplay - why have you chosen to go this route and not stick to the original designs?

Christine: I love doing my own take on a character. The reason for this is because sometimes that character is either too simple or an animal! But I feel if I was going to make a costume based on exactly that character maybe one would pay too much attention to why it doesn't look exactly like that character. If I do my own take, I feel like I have free range on what to do. So now if the person looks at it, they know I am not doing a screen accurate version. Instead they will pay more attention to my craftmanship.

M: Are you planning already for next year?

Christine: Am I planning for the crown for next year? Hell yeah I am! Even though I don't start until September or October. My mind is already thinking of ideas on what to do. I definitely want to do armor, that is for sure! Good chance I will also do an original design of a character I like.

I'm so happy that Christine won the Bernina's Choice Award for her original design of the "Dalek dress" in the contest. She won a Bernina 580 sewing machine. Her dress was so dreamy, and she's one of the few people who helped me out during the competition.

Another one of the contestants who was super sweet is Sarah (aka @PepperMonster). She travels all the way from New York. Being the big sweetheart that she is, she even had foam trophies for everyone- because we're all winners just for qualifying in the contest. Sarah won 3rd place in the same category that I competed in - Comic Books.

M: Having competed prior to this year, what do you think is different about the competition this year?

Sarah: I have competed twice at C2E2 and once at NYCC, but that's all Reedpop, so it's actually three competitions in one year. What I can say is just in that time they have stepped up in their care for the contestants. They offer seats, water, and this year they have handed out certificates for participation, and were all-around very attentive towards the competitors.

M: Being from NY, what keeps you from coming back to C2E2?

Sarah: I keep coming back to C2E2 because it is a great con. Not too big, still all the hype, the panels and entertainment are quality, and the contest is just so much fun. NYCC (also Reedpop) is fun but overwhelmingly large. And other cons can feel a bit cold and many are not quite as professional. Reedpop with C2E2 manages to have all the majesty of the elite cons, while still being a manageable size and affordable.

M: You've always stuck with Thor/Marvel Characters each year, will you be coming up with something different for next year?

Sarah: That is hard! I have cosplay goals for Hela of Hel, another Angela, Valkyrie, Lady Sif, and an Enchantress. Will I ever stop? NOPE! I might need to try competing with something else, but I'm a firm believer in only cosplaying things you like/admire/relate to/are inspired by. I don't want to invest time effort and money into cosplaying something just to compete, even if by doing so would mean I would win.

I want to make a cosplay I love, that just happens to be technically advanced enough to challenge my fellow contestants and possibly take home a win. Frankly a lot of the characters I like outside of Asgardians just aren't complex enough to take to competition. I have plans for Magneto and Dr Doom this year, and while those will hopefully be a hit, and I will love them, they are not "world championship of cosplay" cosplays.

The group of competitors are very cool and supportive of each other. I never saw anyone being cut-throat or rude to anyone. We've all been corresponding with each other since the competition. I really hope each contest is like this.

Here's a few pictures from Geeked Photos during the competition:

To learn more about the competitiors, here is the social media handles and websites (I might be missing a few, so I'll update as soon as I get them):

Cosplay: Shriek

Alias: N/A

Facebook: Marty Dubin

Twitter: @MartyDubin

Instagram: @martydubin

Cosplay: Black Mage

Alias: HDC Cosplay & Fabrication

FB: See above

Twitter: hdccosplay

IG: HDCcosplay

Cosplay:Arthas (Heroes of the Storm)

Alias: Foam Corps

FB: See above

Cosplay: Aurra Sing (Star Wars)

Alias: Jenny Hale Designs \ Jenny le mannequin femme

Twitter: @egyptianscholar

IG: @egyptianscholar

Cosplay:Princess Amidala (Star Wars)

FB: Haelstorm Designs

Twitter: @HaelstormDzynz

Cosplay: Hulk Buster Iron Man

Thomas DelPatrillo

FB: Extreme Costumes

Cosplay:Leroy Jenkins (Warcraft)

FB: Rebel Among The Stars Studios

Twitter: @RebelATS

IG: @RebelATS


Cosplay: Thanos

Alias: Mnamna

Twitter: @immnamna

Cosplay: Dalek from Dr. Who

Alias: Shining Polaris

YouTube: ShiningPolaris2008

Cosplay: Thor

Alias: Pepper Monster

FB: PepperMonsterCosplay

Twitter: @PepperMonster

IG: @peppermonster

Cosplay: Groot

Alias: PropCustomz

FB: See above

Cosplay: The Thing (Fantastic 4)

Alias: Avocet Productions/Creations

Twitter: @jhs1120

IG: @jhs1120

Cosplay: Dark Wing Duck

Alias: Malmey Studios

FB: See above

Twitter: @MalmeyStudios

IG: @mrs.malmey, @malmeystudios

Cosplay: Vampire Hunter D.

Alias: Befu

FB: Verssen Werks

Twitter: @bluetiedesigns

IG: @bluetiedesigns

Cosplay: Liana Stark


Cosplay: Warcraft Orc

Alias: SKS Props

Facebook: Steven K Smith Props

Twitter: @SKSProps

Instagram: @SKSProps

Cosplay: Galacta - Daughter of Galactus

Facebook: Geeks A Gogo

IG: GeeksAGogo

Twitter: GeeksAGogo

Snapchat: GeeksAGogo

Cosplay: Angemon

Alias: Cosplayer Bryan

IG: @darkillusion518

Cosplay: Jadis (White Witch - Chronicles of Narnia)

Alias: Verdaera, Stitchlord



Cosplay: Doctor Octavius (Spider Man)

Name: Nabil Khan

FB: Nabil Khan: NerdFighter Cosplay&More

Cosplay: Legolas (Lord of the Rings)

FB: Chameleon Fx

Cosplay: Julietta Necromancer

FB: Major Sam Cosplay

Cosplay: Groot (with Rocket Racoon)


Cosplay: Maoln (Legends of Zelda)

FB: Sisie

Cosplay: Grayfox

FB: Unknown

Cosplay: Dizzy Wallin

FB: Unknown

Cosplay: Ludo

FB: Heather Jones Makeup FX

You can watch the full video of the competition here:

Congratulations to all the winners and for Major Sam Cosplay for winning this year's Crown Championships of Cosplay 2016!!!

This has been quite a surreal and memorable experience! Thank you for everyone who's been a huge part of it this year. Also, I would like to thank everyone who showed some love to my Galacta cosplay. I was having second thoughts bringing it to C2E2 in fears of people not liking it, but I was flooded with so many compliments. This is only the begginning! I hope you like what I have planned for next year :)

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