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October 18, 2012
Several News Updates on the Aurora Theater Shooting
— Posted by Kenny Miles
Here at TMB, I’ve attempted to keep you up to date on smaller stories that have broken within the last few weeks regarding the Aurora Theater Shooting from this previous summer. With Election Season, Economic News, Middle-East Turmoil and Autumn Sports dominating the news headlines, there were a few important updates with the aftermath of the Aurora Theater Shooting mostly overlooked from national press.
As many recall, on July 20th, James Holmes shocked the nation when he opened fire on a sold out midnight showing of “The Dark Knight Rises” which killed 12 movie goers and injured 58 more. The event gripped the attention of the country and made the public still somewhat leery about attending a movie at a multiplex. These are the following updates:
Century 16 to Re-Open
The Denver Post reported late last month that Cinemark president Tim Warner informed Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan that the theater company will officially re-open and renovate Century Aurora 16 possibly by the end of 2012 into early 2013. This is welcoming news to the residents of Aurora who voted online to determine what should be done to the site. Supposedly, they overwhelmingly supported re-opening the location with remodeling expected as stated in the communication from Cinemark, but the final decision on the auditoriums where the shooting took place is unknown. (Personally, I think there should be some sort of memorial at that location, but that is just my personal opinion.)
Victims to Sue Cinemark
In what was to be expected, victims are suing Cinemark for negligence of the Aurora shooting. A third lawsuit was filed last week in federal court stating that security should have been provided during the premiere showing of “The Dark Knight Rises.” This will be an emotionally difficult and challenging case especially when the survivors testify as speculated by CBS News. A Prosecutor could possibly build a legitimate case against Cinemark for not providing security during a high profile event. The outcome of a trial could dictate how theaters operate security. Also, this is another unfortunate incident for a Cinemark Theater in Colorado. In January, George DeGrazio died of a heart attack and was locked inside of a family unit bathroom at a Cinemark in Fort Collins only to be discovered five days later!
During election season, there’s even a SuperPAC political ad focused on the Aurora Shooting. Stephen Barton, a 22-year-old from Southbury, Connecticut that was wounded by gunman Holmes is featured calling for President Obama and Governor Romney to discuss gun violence in their debates. The ad was sponsored by Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a bipartisan group of over 700 mayors who want loopholes to be closed in gun laws. This effective spot aired before the first debate in Denver which served the national audience a reminder of what happened just a few months ago. With all the mass shootings that followed every week for several weeks, it brings up a very valid point. During this week’s debate, the issue of guns was finally mentioned.
Charity Funds to be Distributed
The victims of the Aurora Shooting will hopefully receive financial charitable compensation by Thanksgiving. Last weekend, 9 News in Denver reported that Mediator Kenneth Feinberg, will handle mediating the distribution of compensation funds as per the request of Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper. Feinberg has experience with such circumstances including distributing money to victims of September 11th, the BP oil spill, and the mass shooting at Virginia Tech. Surviving victims and families demanded that various state officials investigate Giving First and Community First Foundation, two groups which collected donations on behalf of the victims. This is clearly a response to those requests and an ongoing story.
So TMB readers, what do you think? Should the Aurora Theater be re-opened or shut down? Would it be appropriate to have a memorial for the victims? Can victims have a case against Cinemark for negligence regarding the shooting?
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Covering various aspects of the movie industry including specialty genre films, limited release, independent, foreign language, documentary features, and THE much infamous 'awards season,' Kenny Miles loves to talk about whats overlooked in Hollywood as well as what people are talking about in the Entertainment Industry. Also, he likes to offer his opinion on the business of film, marketing strategy, and branding. He currently resides in Denver, Colorado where he is a pollster for the market research company CinemaScore and a sales/events coordinator. You can follow me on Twitter @kmiles723.
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