This one falls into the ”they didn’t really do that, did they?” category. Managers of Goodrich Capital 8 Theaters in Jefferson City, MO, are apologizing for a stunt last weekend in which a man — dressed in black, wearing body armor and carrying a fake rifle –walked into the movie house after a screening of Iron Man 3. Turns out he was an actor arriving for a show as a part of a publicity stunt for the film’s opening weekend. But the incident instead prompted numerous 911 calls by panicked moviegoers and a full-out police response, reminding many of last summer’s movie-theater shooting in Aurora, CO that left 12 dead and dozens injured. Police thought they were responding to a call of an active shooting. “We received a series of 911 calls stating that a man dressed in all black and body armor and a rifle was walking into Capital 8 Theaters,” Cpt. Doug Shoemaker of the Jefferson City Police Department told local ABC 17 News. “Everything was in place, it’s the opening night of a superhero movie, it’s somebody walking in all-dark clothes, everything pointed to bad things about to happen. There’s really no good that can come of this.” Capital 8 Theaters posted the apology below today on its Facebook page:
We apologize and are sympathetic to those who felt they were in harm’s way with our character promotion for Iron Man 3. This was not a publicity stunt. We have worked with the Cosplacon group on many movies to dress up and help entertain our customers. We have had many complaints about the members dressed specifically as S.H.I.E.L.D. operatives carrying fake guns. We didn’t clearly tell our customers and some people didn’t realize it was for entertainment purposes only. We apologize that police were called to come out to our theater. We have a wonderful working relationship with the Jefferson City Police Department. Going forward we will take the necessary steps to make sure this doesn’t happen again. Security and safety for our customers is our number one priority.