Kameha Con Responds to Recent Guest Cancellations
posted on by Lynzee Loveridge
The staff of the upcoming Kameha Con in Irving, Texas issued a statement via Facebook and Twitter on Monday regarding recent guest cancellations due to the addition of voice actor Vic Mignogna as a guest. Mignogna was added to the convention's guest roster on March 22 following a previous cancellation by con staff on February 2. Since the announcement, five voice actors have announced they will no longer attend the convention along with multiple panelists.
In Kameha Con's statement, the staff clarifies that "under no circumstance has any guest influenced our contracts or negotiations," referencing allegations that Kameha Con guests threatened to withdraw from the event if Mignogna was invited. The staff reiterated that that they are aware of recent cancellations by guests and reassured attendees that Texas law enforcement will be on hand at the event. Kameha Con stated it has a zero tolerance policy for harassment and violators "will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."
Kameha Con 2019 is the the second Kameha Con convention organized by Odessa-based event-planning, promotion, and marketing company Silvrfire LLC. Christopher Slatosch registered the company in Texas in 2015 and serves as the business's CEO, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Anime News Network obtained a copy of Silvrfire's confidential guest contract for this year's Kameha Con convention. The contract outlines the stipulations needed for a guest or the event management to cancel an appearance at the event. The contract's fourth section (IV) states under item 4.2:
Once a guest has been advertised, or promoted, in any way, to appear at Event, neither SilvrFire nor Guest may change the parameters of this Agreement or cancel Guest's appearance for any reason other than those outlined in section 4.3 & 4.4., however neither party shall be in breach this Agreement if there is any total or partial failure of performance by it or its duties and obligations under this Agreement occasioned by any act of God, fire, act of government or state, criminal act of any third party, war, civil commotion, insurrection, act of terrorism, embargo, labor disputes of whatever nature, adverse weather conditions, event cancellations, and any other reasons beyond the control of either party.
The contract goes on to say that if either the event or guest is affected by one of the aforementioned reasons, they must provide the reason in writing with substantial proof. The following section (4.3) lays out that guests will not be held liable for failure to attend the convention for the above reasons but also goes on to include illness, injury, and/or disability of the guest or an immediate family member as viable reasons to cancel. Section 4.4 stipulates that guests may not cancel in order to attend another autograph event unless contractually obligated by a studio to do so.
ANN had the contract reviewed by a lawyer familiar with contract law and their opinion was, as the provided version is worded, it leaves the convention open to a lawsuit in the event that Kameha Con cancels a guest's scheduled appearance for a reason outside those stipulated in the contract. Section 4.2 provides reasons that are interpreted as outside either the event or the contracted guest's control but does not offer staff management a catch-all to cancel a guest outside of those parameters. The lawyer asked not to be named in this article.
Kameha Con originally announced it had cancelled Mignogna's appearance in light of allegations of inappropriate touching and sexual conduct by the voice actor. Monica Rial previously shared in Februray an alleged past encounter with Mignogna where she said he would "take a fist full of my hair, pull my head back, and either whisper so closely to my ear that his lips were touching or kiss my cheek/neck" every time he saw Rial. These actions are similar to the actions that fellow voice actress Jamie Marchi accused Mignogna of doing to her. Rial added that she and others have witnessed Mignogna performing the same actions to both colleagues and fans.
Rial is one of many people both inside and outside the anime industry who have publicly accused Mignogna of kissing and embracing them without consent over the course of his career with some allegations dating back to 1989.
Rooster Teeth has replaced Mignogna in the cast of RWBY, and Funimation confirmed its recast for The Morose Mononokean II and severed its relationship with Mignogna.