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CosFest Competition Rules

Whether you're competing for the first time or have a long history with competition, it's always possible we are doing something different than you might expect. It is your responsibility to read the rules and make sure you understand them. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask the CosFest Manager.

CosFest 2010 will take place on Saturday, November 13th at 5:30pm.


I. Eligibility

  1. All contestants must be paid attendees of Pacific Media Expo 2010 at the time of the con.
  2. A single entry may have a maximum of 9 costumed members. We allow special helpers to accompany an entry, such as stage ninjas, costume assistant, medical assistant, etc. If your entry requires one or more helpers, please inform the CosFest Manager for approval. If more than the approved number of contestants appears on stage, your group will be disqualified.
  3. All participating costumes must fall into the categories below. If you aren't sure whether your costume qualifies, you are more than welcome to e-mail the CosFest Manager and ask.
    • Asian films
    • Asian animation
    • Asian comics
    • Asian-origin video game
    • Asian music stars
    • Asian history, culture, or mythology (e.g. historical recreation, Elegant Gothic Lolita, Elegant Gothic Aristocrat, original Asian folkloric costume, etc.)
    • Sources that are non-Asian in origin but explicitly influenced by Pacific-Asian art or culture (e.g. Avatar: The Last Airbender, Kill Bill, Mortal Kombat)
  4. Any costume entered in a previous Pacific Media Expo masquerade is ineligible for re-entry.
  5. Each contestant may only participate in a single entry. Each costume may only appear in one entry. A contestant may wear one costume, or a group of people may wear one costume simultaneously (in other words, a large construct that requires several people inside to move it).
  6. Costumes that have been purchased or rented from a costume shop, designer direct, eBay, Yahoo Auctions, Yahoo Japan Auctions, Cospa, or any other costume store or online resource are absolutely prohibited. Likewise, you may not enter with a costume custom-made for you by a designer, tailor, or seamstress. Any entries that violate this rule will be removed from CosFest and disqualified from all awards. Honesty is always the best policy.

    There are three exceptions to this policy:

    1. The person who made the costume(s) is participating in the entry with you.
    2. "Found Item" costumes are allowed. A "found item" costume is one built by collecting various pieces from thrift shops or normal clothing stores and combining them together in a unique way (with or without sewing/alterations) to make a costume.
    3. If the participant is in the Junior/Youth division, it's okay if a relative or guardian made the costume. However, if the costume is entered for craftsmanship, this relative or guardian must appear to answer the judges' questions.

II. General Guidelines

  1. The show will be limited to 40 entries.
  2. All contestants must sign a liability waiver. Minors must submit a parental consent form in addition to the liability waiver.
  3. Children aged 14 and under must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
  4. Please provide current, accurate contact information so the CosFest Manager can inform you of important updates. Please notify him if your contact information changes.
  5. You must come to the CosFest Office to confirm your entry's presence at the convention. If you do not check in before 2pm on Saturday, November 13th, you will be removed from CosFest.
  6. If you are a group entry, every individual member must personally check-in at the CosFest Office. You do not all have to check in at the same time, but we need to make sure that every member is present and has a PMX membership badge.
  7. There is a mandatory pre-show meeting on Saturday, November 13th at 3pm. We will take roll and go though a brief orientation. If you don't attend this meeting, we will assume that you've dropped out and remove you from CosFest.
  8. Do not wear or use any messy substances that might ruin the costume of another contestant. If you are wearing body paint, glitter, or make-up, please make sure it will not come off in casual contact with others.
  9. Do not leave anything on the stage that cannot be picked up by the crew in a few seconds.
  10. Costumes must be self-contained. Connections to electrical sockets will not be available.
  11. PMX and CosFest staff will not allow anything near the stage that we feel may pose a danger to people or the stage area.
  12. Display weapons are allowed if appropriate to the costume. However, live steel (metal) will not be allowed under any circumstances. If you have any questions concerning whether a prop/weapon is allowed, please ask the CosFest Manager. Please bring your weapon(s) when you check in because it may need to go through a security check. Any weapons not checked in will not be allowed on stage.
  13. Pacific Media Expo's damages policy is: if you break a piece of equipment, deface the facilities, or cause any other damages, then you pay to replace what you damaged. How does one prevent damages? Please exercise care when you are on or near the stage. Be aware of floor microphones, cables, speakers, curtains, screens, etc. No "horse-play" will be tolerated, and take care that large props/costumes will not cause any problems. Be mindful of other people and do not leave a mess.
  14. Please be respectful and civil both to your fellow contestants and to CosFest event staff.
  15. While we certainly would not exercise it lightly, we have the right to cancel your performance at any time.

III. All About Audio

  1. We require pre-recorded audio for all entries, such as background music or skit dialogue.
  2. You MUST pre-record all dialogue. You will not have access to microphones on the stage.
  3. Skit entries have a maximum time limit of two minutes. Walk-ons are allowed up to 20 seconds. Your audio must be no longer than the time permitted for your entry. If your audio is over the limit, we will cut it down.
  4. You may submit your audio online before the convention or in the CosFest Office at con. Audio must be submitted by 2pm on Saturday, November 13th or you will not be allowed to participate. We accept .wav and .mp3 file formats.
    • Pre-con: Please e-mail your file (or a link to your file) to the CosFest coordinator. (He will provide you with the proper e-mail address.)
    • At-con: You may bring your audio via audio CD, data CD, data DVD, USB device, or SD card.
  5. The tech crew will play all audio tracks as-is. They will not pause or resume your dialogue for you.
  6. You must do all audio recording, editing, and splicing yourself. We cannot help you record because we do not have the proper equipment. We will not edit your audio for you. We can provide background music for you if you do not have anything, but the most we will do is cut one section from a single song for you according to the length you need (20 seconds for walk-ons, potentially longer for a Skit type entry).
  7. Bring audio back-ups to the convention. There is always the chance that something unexpected and beyond our control may happen. Be prepared just in case something goes wrong.

IV. Presentation Rules

  1. Pre-recorded audio is required for all entries. (Please see the Audio section for more information.)
  2. Entries may present in CosFest as a Skit or Walk-on.
    • Skits are performance entries such as a comedy sketch, dramatic scene, action sequence, song/dance routine, etc.
    • Walk-ons are simply to model a costume without any performance aspects. (Walk on, do some turns, and walk off.)
  3. Skits have a maximum time limit of two minutes. Walk-ons are allowed up to 20 seconds. Entries that remain on stage beyond their limit will be removed.
  4. If you want the emcee to read an introduction speech, it must be limited to 35 words or less. Emcee narration is optional. If you choose not to have one, the emcee will only read your entry name and number before your performance.
  5. Please do not interact with the emcee. We also prohibit the emcee from talking during your performance.
  6. Be tasteful in creating your presentation. Nothing is allowed that would be banned in a "PG"-rated film. Actions, dress, or mannerisms that would not be allowed on a public street or thoroughfare must be avoided. No explicit sexual gestures, nudity, or explicit swearing. Violating these rules will disqualify you and possibly result in an escort off the premises.
  7. Your entry must be somehow relevant to your costumes and/or directly related to Asian popular culture. We do allow the use of non-Asian music in your skit. You may use the latest popular American movies, commercials, TV shows, etc. as an influence, but we strongly request that you keep your presentation's content appropriate to your character. If you aren't sure whether your skit plans are appropriate, please ask.
  8. Fire, flash powder, lasers, and explosives of any kind are prohibited. Electronic flashes may be permitted if you notify the CosFest Manager in advance and announce it in your emcee introduction to protect those who might be affected.
  9. All presentations must be strictly confined to the stage area and cannot incorporate the aisles or other audience areas. Do not jump off the stage; doing so will result in instant disqualification. Use only the designated stage entrances and exits.
  10. Feel free to surprise the audience, but not the CosFest Manager. If you are planning something "unique", please discuss it with him in advance.

V. Exhibition Entries

  1. Exhibitions are non-competitive entries for showing off one's costume(s) and/or doing a performance just for fun. They are not judged and do not receive awards.
  2. If you wish to participate as an exhibition, please e-mail the CosFest Manager for approval.
  3. Exhibition entries may potentially be allowed to exceed the time limits of competitive entries. Please discuss time allocation with the CosFest Manager. (He might ask for a sample of your work if you wish to exceed 2 minutes.)
  4. Exhibitions will present after all competition entries have finished.

VI. Craftsmanship Judging

  1. Being judged for craftsmanship is optional, but you must meet with the craftsmanship judges if you wish to be eligible for craftsmanship and/or Best in Show awards.
  2. You must confirm your entry by checking in with the CosFest Office and you must appear on stage in the show. If your entry drops out of CosFest after seeing the craftsmanship judges, you will be disqualified.
  3. All craftsmanship judging occurs prior to CosFest itself on Friday and Saturday. You must make an appointment to be judged, and appointment times are given on a first-come, first-served basis.
  4. Two weeks before the convention, entries may begin requesting craftsmanship appointment times. The CosFest Manager will contact all registered entries by e-mail. Appointment timeslots may be requested at the convention as well, but options will be limited based on what's still available. Be on time - if you do not show up, you lose your guaranteed craftsmanship appointment and you probably won't get seen by the judges.
  5. All craftsmanship competitors must fill out a Craftsmanship Form prior to their appointment with the judges.
  6. We strongly recommend that you bring at least one color reference picture of each costume in your entry. (Black and white is acceptable if color images are unavailable.) For recreation costumes, your images should show the character from head-to-toe if possible, and you may include other aspects you feel are important. For original costumes, you may share design sketches or images that show influences behind your creation. You may also provide progress photos or other documentation.
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