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Theater chains ban masks, face paint for Joker screenings

Landmark won't allow masks or costumes, while AMC Theatres reminded moviegoers about its 7-year-old ban on masks and face paint.

joker2019

You won't see people dressed like this at Joker screenings in Landmark or AMC theatres.

Warner Bros. Pictures

Landmark Theatres, the biggest US independent cinema chain, won't allow people to wear costumes or masks to screenings of Joker, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The content of the upcoming DC supervillain movie has been the subject of concern, in part because in 2012 a shooter killed 12 people at an Aurora, Colorado, showing of Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises.

"We want all our guests to enjoy the Joker for the cinematic achievement that it is," reads the message on Landmark's prebooking page for the movie.. "But no masks, painted faces or costumes will be permitted into our theatres."

Given Joker's dark psychological themes, Landmark boss Ted Mundorff wanted moviegoers to feel "comfortable in their surroundings," the Reporter noted. Landmark has 50 theaters in the US.

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AMC Theatres, the largest movie chain in the US, banned masks or face paint in its more than 650 cinemas after the Aurora shootings. It reminded customers about the ban this week, Reuters reported, but people are allowed to wear costumes.

Joker, which comes to Australian theaters Oct. 3, and to theaters worldwide on Oct. 4, won't play at the Aurora theater where the shooting took place, local police told the news gathering service.

The US military also warned service members earlier this month that the FBI found social media posts about replicating the 2012 attack at Joker screenings, but noted that "there are no known specific credible threats," io9 reported last week.

AMC didn't respond to a request for comment.

First published Sept. 27.
Updated Sept. 30, 10 a.m. PT: Adds US military warning.