The “Joker” film starring Joaquin Phoenix has been surrounded by an ever-growing hysteria after the FBI announced that they were monitoring a few radical individuals who could be planning to carry out an attack at some of the screenings of the film. This was only exemplified after the Army sent out a letter explaining to troops to be prepared if there was an attack.
The opening weekend came and went without much incident. The only incident to speak of took place at an afternoon showing of the film where a man in a crowded theater in Manhattan’s Times Square began cheering wildly when there were hints of violence, which sent some to the exit prematurely.
Those who stayed in the theatre yelled at the man to stop creating a scene, but he was not deterred, according to witnesses.
Nathanael Hood was in a theatre when the incident took place and explained to ABC News how he and other people reacted to the belligerent man. “I was scared. I’m sure a lot of other people were,” Hood explained.
He added: “About halfway through when the Joker started killing people and monologuing about how society is evil he started clapping really loudly and incessantly for a good minute. People started yelling for him to shut up, but he kept clapping and cheering like mad.”
The unnamed man didn’t stop there, though, as he reportedly got belligerent with other moviegoers who tried to quiet him down. It caused such a scene that security had to come in and remove the individual.
“He was still being interrogated outside the theater when we came out,” Hood said. Etai Benson, who was sitting next to the unruly man, said he saw the man pour a large bottle of alcohol into his cup before the film started.
“This was most likely a harmless drunk guy, but all the nervousness built around the film made what happened (Friday) night really unsettling,” Benson explained.
The film’s director acknowledged the controversy with the film but added he wants to bring awareness to various ailments that plague our society, including guns, violence and dealing with people with mental illness.