Lightsabers, blasters, masks banned from AMC and Cinemark screenings of Star Wars: The Force Awakens


Star Wars: The Force Awakens is about six weeks away, and a lot of people are getting psyched about seeing the film on opening night. (Though some dumb nerds want to boycott the film. Freakin’ nerds.) These sorts of screenings bring out the diehard fans who enjoy dressing up and having a good time at the theater given the overwhelming camaraderie.

Unfortunately, it looks like AMC and Cinemark are putting the kibosh on all-out Star Wars cosplay.

As IndieWire reports, Cinemark theaters are banning people from wearing masks and face paint to screenings of The Force Awakens, and also prohibiting lightsabers and blasters in the theater. AMC is a bit more lax, allowing lightsabers inside the theater, though no blasters or masks are permitted.

Keep in mind that at AMC and Cinemark theaters you can still dress up like Lobot, Uncle Owen, Admiral Piett, Aunt Beru, Mon Mothma, Grand Moff Tarkin, Porkins, Biggs Darklighter, Wedge Antilles, and that pig-faced guy that mouths off to Obi-Wan Kenobi (but without the pig-face makeup).

While some fans may find these restrictions overly intrusive, they are simply AMC’s and Cinemark’s ways of addressing the uptick in violence at movie theaters in recent years. You may recall that Regal Cinemas instituted a bag search policy at their theaters not too long ago. Regardless of what you think of these gestures by theater chains, they are a way of responding to the fear of mass shootings. (Because nothing has been done politically about the problem, and probably won’t for a long time still given the power of the gun lobby and the country’s deranged fetishization of the Second Amendment.)

It might just be that sad state of affairs that there’s an inescapable sense of inevitability about gun violence, even during those moments when we ought to feel like kids again (if you wanna).

What do you think about these restrictions on Star Wars cosplay? Are you planning on dressing up for The Force Awakens? Sound off in the comments.

[via IndieWire]
Hubert Vigilla
Brooklyn-based fiction writer, film critic, and long-time editor and contributor for Flixist. A booster of all things passionate and idiosyncratic.