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Patrick Stewart Nixes Appearance at This Year's Phoenix Comicon

If you were hoping to get Patrick Stewart's autograph on your mint-in-package Captain Picard action figure at Phoenix Comicon this year, hold your breath.

The Shakespearean actor and star of Star Trek: The Next Generation has canceled his scheduled appearance at this year's edition of Comicon.

According to organizers of the event, Stewart (who is best known for his portrayal of Captain Jean-Luc Picard on Star Trek: The Next Generation) had to pull out due to prior "filming commitments." Although it isn't certain what film the actor is currently shooting, according to the Internet Movie Database he's rumored to appear as a Russian general in the newest Die Hard film, A Good Day to Die Hard.

Stewart was one of seven TNG stars who were set to appear at this year's Comicon in honor of the 25th aniversary of the show. Others -- including Levar Burton, Brent Spiner, Michael Dorn, and Wil Wheaton -- are still scheduled to visit the three-day event, which will take place during Memorial Day Weekend.

The original Star Trek's William Shatner (a.k.a. Captain Kirk) is also going to be there.

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Comicon director Matt Solberg announced the cancellation on the event's website and stated that those who purchased photo-ops with Stewart will receive refunds.

"We have been fortunate over the years to not have any major guest cancellations, especially this close to our show," Solberg wrote. "It is a risk we take as we book headlining actors, and working actors at that. This really is our first major guest cancellation we have had in over four years."

The Patrick Stewart-less Phoenix Comicon takes place May 24 through 27 at the Phoenix Convention Center. Single-day admission starts at $25.

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