Shooting renews debate on cinema security

26 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

After U.S. shooting, high cost of more security vexes movie theaters.

Thursday’s fatal shootings at a Louisiana theater has renewed the debate on security that began three years ago when a gunman killed 12 people and wounded 70 in a movie theater in Aurora, Colo. “If that’s something they need to keep people safe, they should do it,” said Holt, 42, a cinematographer. “I could see how you could sneak in with guns.” John Russell Houser, a 59-year-old drifter, opened fire at Lafayette’s Grand Theatre on Thursday night, slaying two people and injuring nine others before killing himself, according to authorities. DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Bertha Brown says despite the deadly shooting at the Louisiana movie theater, she and her five grandchildren weren’t going to stay away.BOSTON (AP) — A day after the country’s second major theater shooting in recent history, some rattled observers shunned future movie outings, but others on Friday kept lining up at box offices around the country and vowed not to be kept away by fear. “You can’t live your life like it’s always going to happen,” said Aaron Dicks, 31, who was at an AMC theater in Roseville, Minnesota, to see “Pixels.” ”I’m not changing my routine because of a couple of crazy people.” Most moviegoers interviewed Friday had heard of the latest shooting, in which a gunman opened fire on a theater audience in Lafayette, Louisiana, on Thursday. But she’d like to see increased security at theaters — even metal detectors. “I feel that would prevent a lot of the things going on because they can detect whether you have any weapon.” Michele Howard, who took her children to the movies, strongly disagrees. “To me, that’s a little extreme. The National Assn. of Theater Owners and representatives from the nation’s top five chains either did not have a comment or could not be reached for a comment Friday morning.

The Metropolitan Opera in New York surfing the baggage and handbags of clientele daily, and travel tickets requires very long strains and security paychecks. The chains — AMC Entertainment, Regal Entertainment, Cineplex Entertainment, Carmike Cinemas and Cinemark Theatres — also had not released statements on their websites or social media pages. But the countries movie theaters are not going to present this type of strong actions at any given time in the near future even though most recent taking pictures deep in a Louisiana must, security specialists said on Friday. Tracy Haasz said she had a long conversation about the Lafayette shooting in the morning, but said she didn’t even think of it hours later as she went to a Dallas theater with her 9-year-old son. “It’s an unacceptable percentage, but it’s very small,” said Force, 57, who was visiting from Houston with his wife, Angela. “It hasn’t changed our movie-going habits.” Richard Hillelson, a retiree from Annandale, Virginia, traveled to downtown Washington to see the documentary “Do I Sound Gay?” at the Landmark E Street Cinema. “I could have engaged in a lot more dangerous activity,” he said. “I could have taken a shower. Just too many similarities and it makes me shake my head everyday and wonder when are we going to hit the tipping point and say, ‘Enough is enough,’” said Ghawi’s mother Sandy Phillips.

Have a rally point and if you separate and go different ways, it’s harder to shoot a moving target than a stationary target.” Grollnek says theaters may want to increase security, but shouldn’t go overboard. “They don’t necessarily need to bullet proof the whole theater, or put magnatometers at the front door. Maintaining a strong security installation at a multiplex could cost between $250,000 and $1 million a year, according to security consultant Michael Dorn.

You don’t want TSA checking you in to watch a movie, you want to be comfortable.” Michele Howard says “I guess the world we live in we may need to prepare for something like that. Going to a movie is just not inherently dangerous.” Many theaters showed no signs of beefed-up security, but police in Los Angeles added extra patrols, including the possibility of some undercover officers roaming theaters. Such a system would include metal detectors, X-ray machines, workers to operate those devices and additional armed security. “There’s a difference between having a metal detector at the door and actually having effective screening,” said Dorn, executive director of Safe Havens International, a nonprofit security-consulting firm that works with schools and other facilities. “My fear is that we may see theaters throw in metal detectors without proper utilization.” The theater business has seesawed in recent years, with box-office receipts eroded by new entertainment platforms. Consumers are increasingly staying home, enjoying video-on-demand and home-entertainment technology that has made watching movies from the living room an immersive experience.

Most cinemas in the U.S. don’t have metal detectors or extensive security checks, and moviegoers can still wander around the multiplex without fear of raising suspicion from employees. What’s more, the big cinema chains have been slow to beef up security despite multiple lawsuits filed against Cinemark in the wake of the Aurora shooting. Several civil suits, which could go to trial next year, allege that Cinemark should be held liable because of inadequate security that could have prevented the shooting. In response to that shooting, several people wounded or whose family members were killed have filed a federal lawsuit against Cinemark Holdings Inc. alleging that the company should have stepped up security for the premier showing of “Batman: A Dark Knight Rises.” “If you think about a theater, you’re sitting in a box with a bunch of people we don’t know, in the dark,” said Christina Habas, an attorney representing victims and their families.

It was a random act of violence,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for box-office tracker Rentrak. “This makes everyone pause and think,” he added, “but I’ve never seen it in a negative way profoundly affect movie-going or even affect a specific title.” Associated Press writers Jamie Stengle in Dallas, P. Attorney Christina Habas, who represents 18 victims and families, said the Louisiana shooting should force people to think about “how vulnerable they are when they attend a movie.” “I’m not worried,” said Hector Carias, 37, who took in a Friday morning showing of the superhero picture “Ant-Man” at the ArcLight. “I don’t really think I’d want additional security measures.

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