Moviegoers head out to see 'Joker' despite warnings of possible threats

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Moviegoers around New Jersey headed out to see “Joker” Friday, despite a warning by the FBI that the agency is investigating potential threats surrounding the movie.

The FBI says that it is reviewing possible mass shooting threats that have surfaced online about the movie, which was largely filmed in Newark. Those threats referred to the 2012 movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, at another Batman movie, “The Dark Knight Rises.”

But movie fans in Newark said that they weren’t worried and enjoyed seeing parts of their city in “Joker.”

“Some areas I kind of recognized,” says Moses Griffin. “Penn Station and Halsey Street I recognized.”

But movie theaters across the country are taking precautions, just in case. AMC movie theaters banned customers from wearing masks, certain costumes and makeup after the 2012 shooting. Customers who spoke with News 12 New Jersey said that it was a good idea.

RELATED: Report: FBI issues warning about potential threat at ‘Joker’ movie 
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“It’s a good thing they take precautions. Makes people feel safer,” says Kazim Jones.

There are also some who are worried about the violence depicted in “Joker.” Some of the victims of the Aurora shooting called on the filmmakers to support gun reform. And others say they are worried that the story of “Joker” – an unstable man who turns to violence – will encourage others to do the same.

MORE: Brick City becomes Gotham City for ‘Joker’ movie 

But “Joker” fans who saw the movie Friday afternoon tell News 12 that they think that instead of glorifying violence, the movie shines a light on mental illness. And others say that a movie about the Joker – an iconic supervillain character – should contain violence.

“It’s a form of art. You can’t blame the movie theaters for that. It’s one of the most famous comic book villains of all time and you want to be stingy on the violence of the Joker? Come on!” says Jeremiah Woolever of Wyoming.

News 12 reached out to the Newark Police Department about security since the movie is expected to bring large crowds this weekend. Public Safety Director Anthony Ambrose said, "We are always on high alert in our city. We are always vigilant about potential problems."

 

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