Warner Bros. Considers Cancellation of ‘Dark Knight Rises’ Screenings

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Warner Bros. executives struggled Friday with whether to alter roll-out plans for the second-biggest release in movie history, "The Dark Knight Rises"

Warner Bros., the studio releasing “The Dark Knight Rises,” is considering whether to cancel screenings across the country after a massacre took place at a midnight screening in Colorado that left 12 moviegoers dead in the early hours of Friday.

Executives at the Hollywood studio were gathered at the Burbank offices from the middle of the night, struggling with whether to alter roll-out plans for the second-biggest release in movie history.

Also read: 12 Dead, 38 Hurt In Shooting at 'Dark Knight Rises' Screening in Colorado (Updated)

An executive told TheWrap that Warner was watching the situation and still considering whether to take further measures beyond cancelling the Paris premiere, including cancelling screenings at theater chains.

The executive said they would be making decisions on Friday and throughout the weekend as they conferred within the studio, monitored news reports and spoke to theater chains.

A spokesman for the Knoxville, Tenn.-based Regal theater chain told TheWrap, "We will continue to monitor the situation and adjust our security needs as necessary," but did not specifically respond to whether they might cancel screenings.

A spokesman for AMC theaters did not respond to requests for comment.

The film rolled out on 3,700 screens for midnight Thursday screenings, and is set to be seen in a total of 4,404 theaters, with a record 332 Imax screens.

“The Dark Knight Rises” is Warner Bros.' biggest release of the year thus far. It was expected by box office analysts to open between $170 million and $195 million. That would make it the best U.S. opening ever for a non-3D movie.

The film is also set to roll out on 6,765 screens overseas in 17 territories.

Also read: Dark Knight Rises' vs. 'The Avengers': Lack of 3D Will Limit Batman's Box Office

Warner Bros. declined to speak on the record on the matter, except for an earlier statement that said: "Warner Bros. and the filmmakers are deeply saddened to learn about this shocking incident," the studio said in a statement. "We extend our sincere sympathies to the families and loved ones of the victims at this tragic time."

The Paris premiere was originally scheduled to take place on Friday. Director Christopher Nolan and stars Christian Bale and Anne Hathaway were expected to attend the red carpet event.