A leading cinema chain is banning people from bringing lightsabers to Screenings of the new Star Wars movie because it says they resemble ‘weapons’.
Cinemark, the third largest chain in the US, has also banned moviegoers from bringing Star Wars ‘blaster’ guns. The announcement was added to posters for the film, outlining that “simulated weapons (including lightsabers/blasters) will be allowed in the building.”
The chain has also banned “face coverings” and “face paint,” meaning that fans will have to leave their Darth Vader masks at home.
CBS reports that the reason for the ban stems from the 2012 shooting at a screening of The Dark Knight Rises.
Another theater chain, AMC, has also enacted a similar ban, putting out the following statement:
“AMC does not permit weapons or items that would make other guests feel uncomfortable or detract from the movie-going experience. Guests are welcome to come dressed in costume, but we do not permit masks. In short, bring your lightsaber, turn it off during the movie, and leave the blaster and Darth Vader mask at home.”
“Having a prohibition on something like a mask or plastic weapon is not going to do anything but provide an allusion of keeping people safe,” one fan said in reaction to the ban.
Since the Aurora Theater shooting took place, cinemas have become more like high security schools and colleges, with strict entry policies and thorough bag searches at the door.
A recent survey found that nearly half of moviegoers would feel good about paying a premium on their ticket fee to support extra security measures.
Looks like the only force that will be with Star Wars viewers this holiday season will be the real life stormtrooper security force at the entrance to the theater.
The Emperor would certainly approve.
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