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 Conjuring up movie terror – and safety issues

Actress Madison Wolfe as Enfield Poltergeist victim Janet Hodgson in a scene from The Conjuring 2 (Photo: Warner Bros)
 
AUDIENCE disorder during screenings of The Conjuring 2 – the Enfield Poltergeist has caused many French cinemas to cancel performances.

Disruptive loud laughter, hysterical yelling and violent altercations have been reported. The French newspaper Le Parisien announced that most of the 262 French cinemas planning to show the film have removed it from their schedules.

   

The Conjuring 2 official movie poster
 
The real-life Janet Hodgson pictured in 1977 during the Enfield Poltergeist investigation

The real-life Janet Hodgson pictured in 1977 during the
Enfield Poltergeist investigation

Some Paris movie theatres, including the Cyrano de Versailles cinema, axed the James Wan film on release “to ensure the safety of staff and customers.”

An altercation at the MK Bastille cinema is said to have escalated into a large-scale brawl, started by one group annoying another by “screaming at the slightest movement” on screen.

Staff were unwilling to intervene, which prompted audience members to take action.

UGC, a major French cinema chain, will not show the film at all, but that is said to be a decision based on “editorial choice” to cut down on its genre content.

The Conjuring 2 has already exceeded expectations by making £213 million ($276m) worldwide, and is set to beat the £246m takings of the original movie.

More serious – or horrific – repercussions are said to have followed a screening of the film in Tiruvannamalai, in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. According to the Times of India, a 65-year-old man suffered a heart attack during one of the film’s scariest moments.

He was rushed to hospital but was proclaimed dead on arrival. A friend was then asked to transport his body to the Tiruvannamalai Government Medical College Hospital for a post-mortem examination.

The man and the corpse were last seen on an auto rickshaw but they never reached their destination. Both are now reported as officially missing.


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