March 12, 2020
The Entertainment Software Association announced that E3 2020, slated for June 9-11 in Los Angeles, has been canceled. “After careful consultation with our member companies regarding the health and safety of everyone in our industry — our fans, our employees, our exhibitors and our longtime E3 partners — we have made the difficult decision to cancel E3 2020,” explained ESA in a statement. “Following increased and overwhelming concerns about the COVID-19 virus, we felt this was the best way to proceed during such an unprecedented global situation.”
“E3 is just the latest in a long line of tech shows that have closed up shop for the year,” reports TechCrunch. “Likely many will be following Nintendo’s longstanding tradition of making announcements via webcast. The question for E3’s organizers is whether those companies who move to an online approach will ultimately return in 2021. The ESA is ‘exploring options’ around offering elements of the event online.”
The list of canceled or postponed conferences and festivals related to media, entertainment and technology continues to grow. Among the latest are the Beverly Hills Film Festival, Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, F8 Developers Conference, Game Developers Conference, Google I/O, MIPTV, Mobile World Congress, NAB Show, SXSW and TCM Classic Film Festival.
In addition, a range of concerts, theater events, sports competitions and productions have been postponed or canceled due to coronavirus concerns. The NBA has suspended its season, while the NCAA plans to continue basketball tournaments without fans (UPDATE: March Madness has been canceled). Events related to the NewFronts and Upfronts have been canceled and many TV talk shows are continuing without their live studio audiences, notes The New York Times.
Deadline is maintaining a list of affected events and productions, a list that is being updated regularly.