Furries are renting theaters for Zootopia meets, and they’re getting bigger than cons.
by Patch O'Furr
Nordic Fuzzcon has a Zootopia screening at a theater for 250. That’s the size of it’s 2014 attendance. (Art: Silverfox)
The most anticipated “furry” movie in memory is coming. It’s the #1 reason to call 2016 The Year of Furry. Zootopia is Star Wars for anthro animals.
This is different from other such events. It’s a fandom pulling mainstream media to itself, despite reasons for the media to resist open ties. This isn’t Zootopia fandom taking over, it’s furries doing what they already love.
In the San Francisco Bay area, over 200 furries will stuff a theater to it’s limit. The screening is just for them. It includes not just a movie, but a whole night of fursuiting. There’s a changing room in the theater, and the neighborhood will be inundated with fluffy revelers at bars and restaurants.
It’s the size of a small con. The event was arranged by convincing a theater that it would be well handled and attended. The response exploded beyond expectations. A theater with 145 seats was maxed out within days, and had to be switched for one with 225 spots. That isn’t even enough – the wait list is double digits and rising. It went out through members-only channels and word of mouth, to serve the most dedicated fans and manage demand beyond the limits.
Imagine the fun. You get to strut your stuff in costume, and see audience interplay that happens with few movies short of Rocky Horror. It won’t be surprising to hear fandom references flying at the screen that wouldn’t be heard in any other show.
It’s a strange marriage when subculture gathers around the most mainstream media, while Disney arguably may be using a strategy to spread hype with Furries without admitting it. A furry movie director who just sold his documentary at the Slamdance film fest gave me gossip that Zootopia crew admitted it’s real.
It's an amazing time to be furry. Corporations want to avoid us and get with us at the same time. They don't know how to furry, we do.— Dogpatch Press (@DogpatchPress) February 10, 2016
Already-successful events are inspiring many to set up their own. If you haven’t done it yet, don’t wait. Theaters set schedules a few months ahead.
Chance the Dragon, admin of San Diego Furries, writes: “Anyone have any leads for a movie theater that will accept fursuits, even if some negotiation is necessary?” He told me: “I saw your guys’s success up there, and I was like, “If only we had a place like that around here!”
Here’s some other Zootopia furmeets around the USA. Do you know about more? Please comment below!
- Columbia, TN: March 5 fursuit-friendly movie party.
- Kansas City, MO: Alamo Drafthouse theater rental for 38, with fursuits.
- Maryland Furs and NOVAfurs are teaming up to rent a theater just for furries.
- Midwest FurFest: Private showing at a 121 seat theater, with fursuiting.
- Rhode Island furs: fursuit-friendly Zootopia meet.
- Rochester Furs: “I looked into renting a theater on Saturday the 5th. We would need to have about 100 people.”
- Seattle: 32 furries (no fursuits).
- Socal Furs: Zootopia FurMeet at El Capitan on Saturday, March 5th. Fursuits not allowed.
- (Reddit) Furry meetups for Zootopia? “Denver Colorado furries are renting out a showing with fursuits allowed… 96 going”
Fursuit screening of Zootopia at the Studio Movie Grill in Simi Valley is in the works! If interested, sign up here: https://t.co/6a4XclwlPH
— Calicotopia (@ManedCalico) February 11, 2016
ATTENTION #Zootopia NERDS, @KCFur is organizing a fursuit-friendly Opening day Theater https://t.co/KRgDz0mBgz and I'm driving 5 hrs to it!
— AAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHLBI (@foxalbiazul) January 3, 2016
Updates: Many new comments on Reddit – check to see if you can connect with anyone near you!
@DogpatchPress Sources say Furry Fiesta's GOH dinner is at a Studio Movie Grill, sold out 160 seat theater.
— Derpster Diver (@MikaseCoyote) February 15, 2016
Thank you for including my tweet! Unfortunately, the Studio Movie Grill just backed out citing security concerns regarding fursuits. I’m trying to find another venue.
So sorry – that is disappointing. I hope you can go to another place and show the already developed interest to lock in a commitment. BTW, got an article series about costumes and security worries – http://dogpatch.press/2015/11/23/furmeet-zootopia/
Ya, I was really disappointed. I’m in talks with another theater that seems interested, tho. I’m hoping to lock down the details by this weekend if they say it’s alright!
And that article is great! I had it bookmarked for awhile before I finally started trying to organize this whole thing. Thanks for the advice!! 😀
I’m glad you did 🙂 Can’t wait for these shows.
FYI, the MFF one moved to a 177 seat theater and sold out. We have a wait list and who knows, maybe some magic may happen.
Good job and great to hear about the successful organizing 🙂
Not just US furs have been doing that but as well here in México we have an event for the movie this next Friday. It will be fursuit friendly and as well the theater for all of us.
It looks like we all furs had the same insane idea at the same time.
There are 4 additional Zootopia movie meets currently on Fursvp.com
– Norcross, GA (at 41 RSVPs so far)
– Central NJ (at 36 RSVPs, and trying to hit a 99 minimum)
– Central PA
– Sarasota, FL
FYI, the Kansas City event appears to be cancelled, and Albi’s link on Twitter is out of date.
one here in Toronto, Canada to!! (40 people and counting!)
one here in Toronto, Canada too!! (40 people and counting!) info here:https://t.co/aVrahvxQy2
There we, Furcinema, on Brazil too 😀
And the Fursuit are allowed on ours <3
That’s wonderful! How many furs are going?
It would be great for my movie theater to have a furry meet regarding Zootopia, but fur suits would be a security hazard for both of the Stockton, Calif. theaters (Regal City Centre & IMAX 16 & Regal Holiday Cinema 8). Anywhere from body suits downward would be fine. Fur suit heads wouldn’t be permitted unless carried.
Some theaters will allow it. You just might have to get permission ahead of time or find the theaters that allow it. The AMC theaters have always let us in the past.
I’m curious, did you work something out with AMC ahead of time?
AMC is the one the chains I tried, but the theater manager said I had to go to their website and fill out a form. I did, and still two weeks later I haven’t heard back. I tried talking to the manager again and she said they can’t actually organize anything at the location directly. It’s been very frustrating! Do you have any tips on dealing with them?
I wouldn’t have such high hopes about dealing with corporate chains, unless they’re small and are working against a big competitor, or very localized and maybe you know someone there. You might do better with indie ones especially if they host community events.
Anything corporate usually requires a long lead time for a reply, like a couple of months. It’s easier for a bureaucrat to just say “no” than to try to get a “yes” approved by someone higher up the chain.
I’m not official staff, but the Maryland Furs have set up a gathering near the DC area. It was originally going to be in the small theater. It then grew into a medium theater. It’s now in the largest theater with 120 furs expected. Many more on the wait list hoping people can’t make it.
Correction 151 seat theater with many, many more on the wait list. Details: http://mdfurs.org/events/zootopia-private-screening/
Can I also add the details of my Zootopia private showing rental? XD I rented a theater too in my country but not USA.
Comment and let us know – very curious!
Date: February 20, 2016
Cinema: Director’s Club Cinema
Location: SM Mall of Asia, Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines
Others: With fursuiting in theater, with fursuiting in a Cosplay event before showing, and dinner after showing.
Seating Capacity: 30
Tooth Less The Furry Engineer
Will you add this in your article? Haha.
I can’t keep up with all the updates! Too many. I think your comment does the job 🙂
Sorry, and it’s okay! 🙂
I didn’t hear about this Dogpatch press before but I will keep myself updated with it from now on. 😀
Akala ko ako lang pinoy dito!
Send me a message at my page!
I’m a Filipino furry too.
The GOH lunch at Texas Furry Fiesta will be a dinner theater showing of Zootopia. I have signed up for it, but I have no idea how many will be attending.
Arhg, I do hope something like this happens in Arizona!!! <3
The Kansas City meet (listed above) isn’t happening. Apparently the Alamo Drafthouse isn’t even getting Zootopia,though there will still be an event I’m sure, but just mixed with the general audience.
Lincoln, RI. on march 5th 10pm. Zootopia screening. I’m sure going.
Wonder if there will be one ib my home town of porterville the theater lets people wear costumrs and cosplays all the time.
I predict worldwide shortages of popcorn as 4channers buy all that’s there.
I’m not part of the furry community (though I have friends in it), but I’ve managed two different theatres in San Diego in the past, so I would suggest seeing if the Ultrastar Hazard Center is getting it; they are pretty open to most things. I would also suggest the Reading downtown, but I heard they are going out of business; not sure when that is happening, though.
This is a great tip, and I made sure to pass it on to them. Thanks so much!
It’s 2016: When Will Furry Lose Its Scare Quotes?
Every time I see Furry in quotation marks it reminds me of Mr. Burns saying how much he enjoys his so-called “iced cream.”
“Furry” in the first line? It’s in quotes because it’s not a movie by or for furries. It’s a mainstream anthropomorphic animal movie made by Disney with no official connection to fandom. Unofficially there are tons of reasons to call it furry. However, if you pay attention, there’s a lot of people poo-pooing this, out of oversensitivity about “their” thing being corrupted by the eeeevil forces of pop culture.
Personally, I favor the opinion that there’s nothing wrong with it and Disney probably is coyly courting furry fans. But if I were to call it a capital-f Furry movie and not a “furry” movie, it would be asking for pointless drama.
Based on the definition of Furry fandom that’s existed for the past three decades, it’s a capital F Furry movie because it has anthropomorphic animals in it.
Period, full stop.
Furry has never been defined by nebulous and unworkable terms of who made it or who they made it for. It’s always been defined by anthropomorphic animals.
One of the details that I’ve asked my publishers is whether “furry” should be with an upper-case or a lower-case F/ The general preference today is foe a lower-case. Also between “furries” and “furrys”, the former is preferred.
See what I mean about drama. Now it’s semantic drama about quote marks.
The people who made the movie wouldn’t put a “furry” label on it, that’s all you. A lot of people disagree with you. You can debate them if you want, but you won’t win.
“there’s a lot of people poo-pooing this”
TIL: There’s a lot of people in this fandom who don’t actually know what this fandom’s about. At least in that thread. Ye gods.
It’s a self defined group, though, so to each their own. Thankfully nobody approves members.
By the way, please bring comments that contribute to stories. Please do not bicker about non-issues like punctuation, or about how much you know better than others. I’ve spammed the unnecessary ones. Please refrain from doing that.
Quotes are appropriate for commonly recognized separation between big corporate media and alternative fandom. This site is dedicated to a subculture with a DIY ethic while appreciating pop culture just the same. That is the editorial platform.
“Last word” comments are a good way to use up tolerance. You’re welcome to return for other stories.
Psh, the best furry movie of the year is clearly Deadpool.
Califur just announced two showtimes for Zootopia
Thanks billy, glad you shared.
Hahah, this is pretty international. I’m doing one for Singapore on the 26th Feb too, just in case anyone happens to be around and wants in. Hit me up on Twitter! @Gamma_052 for details.
Megaplex announced they have a 104-seat theater for Zootopia on Saturday 3/5, for $1 a ticket, but it seems to have sold out in a matter of hours.
We’ve surpassed 50 people for our late night showing in Atlanta.
MN Furs (Twin cities area) – fursuit friendly
Thanks skippy! these keep popping up. Waaay too many for me to cover alone, haha.
Late entry in Tulsa, Oklahoma: https://plus.google.com/u/0/events/cgbc8rlgdgj4ao5kdua4p9gv8mg?authkey=COK_7P6ynOyYGA
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