Star Wars fans are out in full ‘force’ for the opening of the new Star Wars film, The Force Awakens.
But through the fan frenzy comes a sense of heightened awareness across the nation.
After a 2012 shooting in Colorado where a gunman said he dressed as the Joker before shooting 12 people, cinemas released rules for wearing costumes to movies.
With the terrorist attacks in California and Paris on everyone’s minds, cinemas have re-released these rules in relation to the new film.
Regal Entertainment Group, as well as Goodrich Quality Theaters released statements that mention they won’t allow anything that could be misconstrued as a weapon.
“Weapons or items able to confuse or mislead fellow patrons are not permitted within the theater or theater lobby,” a statement from Goodrich reads. “This includes lightsabers, blasters, Wookiee bows, ion paddle beamers, wrist rockets, stun sticks, and anything else that could possibly concern or distract another guest.”
In addition to weapons policies, theaters are also restricting movie-goers from covering their faces.
“Guests of all ages with masks, props, face paint or weapons are not allowed into Regal Entertainment Group locations,” Regal Cinemas said in a statement. “This includes Lightsabers and face-obscuring hoods.”
Local theaters ABC17 News reached out to said they’ll be following corporate policy, and only one theater out of the three is stepping up security.
The Jefferson City Capitol 8 theater manager said it usually hires an extra off-duty policeman on the weekends, but is adding one Thursday for the advanced showings of the film.
Both Columbia theaters said they will have their usually off-duty officers patrolling but it won’t increase security.