Xbox at Comic-Con
Anyone who knows Allison Lacro, PM at TPN, knows that work and play are all rolled up into one. It all depends on what you define as fun! Allison is a lynchpin for our Xbox client (and at every TPNer insider-party). Working long hours and throwing everything she has at every single project, Allison is all attitude all the time…and it’s the kind you want to be around. But do not be fooled by her friendly ways…this girl can also kick some serious booty. Did you think you could get away with crowding “her” booth with that ridiculous banner? Think again bro. This kitten has claws. Her clients depend on it. (She seriously does have incredibly long, manicured nails, the one and only PM I can say that about, but that’s a story for another time.)
Allison’s energy knows no bounds. She is nothing less than zealous about her work. Catch her on the 23rd hour of a 24 hour shift and she will still crack a joke, or at least throw you one of her radiant smiles. And never were there more smiles to be seen than at Comic-Con.
“This was the toughest show I’ve ever done – but definitely the most fun!” Allison beams as she – speed talking – runs me through the event program.
Allison, along with TPNer Nick Rowden, provided production management services for not one, but five programs for Xbox at Comic-Con. TPNer Norm Spencer, provided design services. Our team could be found at (1) The Xbox Lounge at the Hard Rock Hotel, (2) Xbox Booth at the Convention Center, (3) American Chopper Reveal at the Hard Rock Hotel, (4) Media Showcase at the Hard Rock Hotel (5) Nerd HQ at Jolt’n Joe’s.
TPN’s work centered on logistics and that behind the scenes magic that sets the stage for every experience. All the usual event challenges were met with a few doozies thrown in like having to load in and out and in again the entire Media Showcase within 24 hours (Alli gives a shout out to Nick for making that possible).
Designed by Norm Spencer, the Booth at the Convention Center was a 20×20 featuring ten Gears of War 3. XBOX hostesses greeted attendees and also highlighted the other XBOX events happening outside the convention center. The Edge Room at the Hard Rock was media exclusive on Friday night and then opened up more XBLA and Kinect titles for fans (more games = more fun). The American Chopper Reveal publicized a Gears of War 3 custom motorcycle designed (and driven in by) the star of American Chopper, Paul Teutul Jr. (must see the pictures!).
A couple blocks deeper into the Gaslamp neighborhood in San Diego, Jolt’n Joe’s stood out as the place to party. Throwing a shin-dig for (uh-hem) a few of his closest friends at Nerd HQ, Zac Levi didn’t even know he was hitting up Allison for her production skills. Zac, a loyal Xbox fan, teamed up with XBOX to provide several game stations at his NERD HQ game lounge and guess who made that happen? See…celebrities love Xbox too.
This is one of those events where hard work is rewarded. “Even from behind the scenes, there was no shortage of celebrity sightings…What was truly a nerd event only a few years ago, has become more of a pop-culture extravaganza…” Zac Levi (Chuck), Ian Somerhalder (The Vampire Diaries), Anna Torv (Fringe), Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory)…and yes, the one and only Justin Timberlake. Normally one who could really care less about celebrity sightings, Allison makes an exception for Justin. As the self-titled “Number One Fan”, Allison willingly digressed to a teeny-bopper status and all those hormones just floated her through the rest of the gig. “I got to be in the same room as Justin Timberlake. I was literally on cloud nine.”