I know it was like a week ago, but last Thursday night, during a midnight showing of the new Christopher Nolan Batman movie, 12 people were killed while 50 were injured when a man opened fire inside the movie theater!
I just... there's no words for that. It's just sad. People go to the movies to escape reality for a few hours and enjoy the entertainment onscreen before them. No one thinks something like this is going to happen! I know first hand, having worked/managed a theater for a few years, working many midnight special premieres like this for blockbuster movies, I never thought of something happening like this there!
Reports say that witnesses said someone, whom now is assumed to be the shooter, exited through the theater's side emergency exit door appearing to take a call early on in the movie and then the shooter came through the door not too long later, so obviously it was propped open.
My mom heard on the news today that someone is putting a lawsuit out against the theater, the film studio and the doctor that had been treating the shooter prior to the incident.
I can definitely see stricter policies and procedures for the theaters from now on.
When I worked there, our ushers were supposed to be doing "theater checks" every 15-30 minutes and the theater checks included checking that the exit doors were shut tight, that the sound and picture on screen were of acceptable quality, and looking for unruly patrons in the theater doing things they shouldn't be. I know though, that often times we had to remind ushers to do these checks and that some of them "half-assed" the checks.
I can see these being much, much stricter now as those emergency exit doors are supposed to be shut tight for a reason - they don't open from the outside and they swing outward so it's not like someone can kick it in.
I read somewhere that the movie started at 12:15am and calls about the shooting came in at about 12:38am. Should a theater check have been done during that time? Possibly... I know at our later shows we'd dismiss the ushers after they did one final theater check.
I'm not trying to point blame, but as a former movie theater employee of several years, it does make me wonder.
I feel horrible for all those families of the victims though! And the community... having been part of a community affected by a major shooting, I know what's that like and it's not pleasant at all. Let's be sure to continue to keep them in our thoughts and prayers!