Teenagers wearing suits have been banned from attending some screenings of Minions: The Rise Of Gru after a viral trend prompted unruly behavior.
Groups of young friends in sharp suits have been filming themselves attending the latest Despicable Me spin-off before posting it on TikTok as part of the new #gentleminions trend. The videos show groups of suited youngsters in cinemas across the globe while adopting a hand gesture commonly used by supervillain Felonious Gru (voiced by Steve Carell).
More from Rolling Stone
It’s thought that most of the videos just show groups attending the screenings in their sharp-suited attire, but a small minority show the teens hurling popcorn and other items at each other.
The disruption has already prompted several theaters in the U.K. to speak out against the viral TikTok trend.
In a statement to Sky News, Odeon Cinemas said: “Due to a small number of incidents in our cinemas over the weekend we have had to restrict access in some circumstances.”
Elsewhere, the manager of Vue Cinemas in Worcester claimed that the trend had cost them over £1,000 in refunds from disgruntled customers.
“The trend cost me £1,300 yesterday,” they told the Worcester News.
“I had to refund all of the tickets in that theatre because of kids shouting and mimicking the Minions while the film was playing. It was a group of about eight kids. Now, when we see any kids coming in to see the film dressed up we give them a warning. We tell them that if there is one complaint, whatever that may be, they will be kicked out of the cinema.”
This whole “dress up in full suits to watch the new Minions” trend on tiktok got me cackling like an idiot pic.twitter.com/NadlgL4f0K
— Black Swordsman Shakoichi (@ShakExcellence) June 30, 2022
One independent cinema in Wadebridge, Cornwall has also banned unaccompanied children wearing suits from watching the film.
In a statement posted on Twitter before being deleted, The Regal wrote: “We are currently not admitting unaccompanied children wearing suits for ‘Minions: The Rise Of Gru.’ This is due to the issues we have encountered over the last two days and its associated behaviour.”
But Universal Pictures, which produced the film, has taken an entirely different view. Endorsing the #gentleminions trend, they tweeted: “To everyone showing up to Minions in suits: we see you and we love you.”
to everyone showing up to @Minions in suits: we see you and we love you.
— Universal Pictures (@UniversalPics) July 1, 2022
The trend first began in Australia with a group of 15 teenagers from Sydney heading to the theater in their formal attire. The viral TikTok shows the group clapping at the start of the film and giving a standing ovation at the end, but they didn’t throw popcorn or bananas at the screen like some of their followers.
The UK is the only place to currently have restrictions in place for holding back the Gentleminions movement, but movie theater employees throughout the world have taken to social media to express their annoyance with the increasingly chaotic trend.
Theater employee here. Most of these guys are pretty chill. The only bad thing I've seen was a few bananas in a row of seats.
But of course I've seen some major misbehaving.
If you're going to dress like a gentlemen, you must act like one.
Stay classy my dudes.
— CEO of Based (@Duuuh_cringe) July 4, 2022
Hey if you show up to see Minions in suits, don't ask the overworked and underpaid theater employees to take a photo of you and your dumbass friends. We got shit to do, use a timer.
— FlakeyJakey // BLM (@JakeyButNot) July 4, 2022
as a former movie theater employee, they have EVERY right to kick out the obnoxious groups of 15 year old boys dressed in suits for the minion movie. i know for a fact they are making the workers spend 40 minutes cleaning one theater…
— Mary Grace! (@mg_purser) July 3, 2022
A version of this story first appeared in Rolling Stone UK. Subscribe to the magazine in print and receive complimentary access to the digital edition.
Best of Rolling Stone