Nationwide costume ban not in effect at Columbia theaters

Friday, July 20, 2012 | 7:21 p.m. CDT; updated 2:58 p.m. CDT, Saturday, July 21, 2012

COLUMBIA — In the aftermath of the shootings at a Denver area theater, the two Columbia theaters where "The Dark Knight Rises" is showing have no plans to ban costumes. But Goodrich Forum 8 will ask patrons not to wear masks to movies for now. 

The armed gunman who shot and killed at least 12 moviegoers and wounded 59 early Friday morning was wearing a ballistics helmet, bulletproof vest, bulletproof leggings, gas mask and gloves. He was armed with three weapons and may have been dressed to impersonate a villain from the third installment of the Batman films.

American Multi-Cinema, the second largest movie chain in North America, announced in a news release Friday afternoon that it "will not allow any guests into (its) theaters in costumes that make other guests feel uncomfortable and (it) will not permit face-covering masks or fake weapons inside (its) buildings."

Amanda Wilson, manager at Forum 8, a cinema owned by Goodrich Quality Theaters in Grand Rapids, Mich., said that patrons are only being asked not to wear masks. Otherwise, Wilson said the theater will have its usual Friday night security guard and tickets have sold "as normal."

Hollywood Theaters, a movie theater chain based in Portland, Ore., has not released a statement, but local manager Alex Woefel said that he was not aware of any changes to the theater's policy about what patrons can wear.

Corporate officials for the chain were unavailable for comment regarding ticket sales Friday.

Supervising editor is Katherine Reed.

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