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Cleveland Cinemas: Patrons can't wear masks to movies

11:14 PM, Jul 20, 2012   |    comments
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Getty Images: Frederic J. Brown

Theaters in Northeast Ohio are taking extra security precautions for showings of "Dark Knight Rises" after Colorado shootings.

Solon-based Cleveland Cinemas will no longer allow people to enter the theaters wearing masks, according to Director of Marketing David Huffman.

Huffman declined to detail other precautions being taken for security reasons.

Cleveland Cinemas released a statement just after noon Friday:

"Cleveland Cinemas wants to extend its sympathies to the victims in the incident at the Century Theatre in Colorado and to their families. Our thoughts are with them as they begin the difficult healing process."

"The safety and security of our patrons is important to us.  Given the recent incident in Colorado we are taking precautions to help address our patron's safety concerns."

"Dark Knight Rises" is showing at the following Cleveland Cinemas locations: Capitol Theatre, Chagrin Cinemas, Shaker Square Cinemas, Solon Cinemas and Tower City Cinemas.

Most area theater managers declined to comment about increased security or new safety measures. Others referred Channel 3 to corporate headquarters.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, "Dark Knight Rises" has already set a midnight screening record earning between $28 million and $30 million.

Both Regal Entertainment Group, of Knoxville, Tenn., and Plano, Texas-based Cinemark Holdings said they would be adding security measures but declined to elaborate.

Regal released a statement in response to a Channel 3 inquiry:

"We are profoundly saddened by the tragedy that occurred at a Denver area theatre and are concerned for the victims and their families. The security and safety of our guests and staff is always our number one priority."

"As is our custom, we will continue to monitor the situation and adjust our security needs as necessary. In the meantime, our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families."

Cinemark Holdings owns the Century 16 Aurora where the shootings took place and released the following statement:

"Cinemark is deeply saddened about this tragic incident. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families and loved ones, our employees, and the Aurora community."

"We are grateful for the quick and professional reaction of all local law enforcement and emergency responders."

"Cinemark is working closely with the Aurora Police Department and local law enforcement."

Cinemark, one of the largest movie theater chains in the nation owns 298 theaters across 39 states with 3,895 screens in 39 states, including three others in Colorado.

It has 19 in Ohio, including Aurora, Macedonia, North Canton, Strongsville and Valley View.

WKYC-TV

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