Comic Con India’s fifth annual Comic Con Hyderabad is going to be held at the Hitex Exhibition Centre in Izzat Nagar this weekend.

“One of the best-known things about a Comic Con is the cosplay event for fans. Thankfully, Hyderabad has a strong cosplay culture, including a cosplayers club. We will have a contest where participants can come as any character they want to, and the first-prize winner might represent India at the International Comic Con," says Jatin Varma, founder and managing director of Comic Con India.

The cosplay contest will have five categories: comic books or graphic novels; movies, television and animated; gaming; anime or manga; and sci-fi or fantasy cosplay. There will also be spaces where fans can use virtual reality and augmented reality to play games, watch movies, etc. There will also be an ESL India Premiership zone, where gamers can try their hand at video games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, DOTA 2 and Clash Royale. A performance arena will have YouTube content creators, such as stand-up comedian Sahil Shah, The Viva and DJ Elliot, presenting live shows.

International and Indian graphic book artists and writers will be taking part in interactive sessions at the two-day event. These include Martin Morazzo, the artist of Nighthawk, Electra and Snowfall, characters from the Marvel Universe; Joe Harris, writer of The X-Files and Great Pacific; Sailesh Gopalan, creator of Brown Paper Bag Comics; and Abhijeet Kini, illustrator for Tinkle.

“I’ve never been to India before, so I have great expectations. As a special guest at an Indian Comic Con, I want to get in touch with the local creators and see what comic books are produced there. I hope I can encourage Indian aspiring artists to break into the US comics scene," says Morazzo.

“We are expecting more guests this year and more engagement with these guests through our varied programmes," says Varma. Over 31,000 people attended the 2016 Hyderabad Comic Con.

Comic Con India will be held on 14-15 October, 11am-8pm, Hitex Exhibition Centre, Izzat Nagar. Tickets, Rs499, available on www.comicco