Children at a UK movie theater got a shocking surprise while awaiting the opening credits of DreamWorks’ Madagascar 3.
During a scheduled showing of the Ben Stiller- and Chris Rock-voiced animation, viewers were instead shown the newly released horror film Paranormal Activity 4 at Nottingham’s Cineworld. According to Yahoo! Movies UK, parents rushed their children from the theater following a shocking opening scene which features a bloody female corpse being thrown at the camera – a throwback from the series’ first film.
“They started playing the movie and I thought – this doesn’t look right. And then I recognized the opening sequence as a flash back to the first movie, which I saw a couple of years ago,” said one mother, who brought her eight-year-old son to the movie. “It opens on the most terrifying scene in the first film – where a body shoots full pelt towards the camera. It’s enough to make grown men jump, so you can imagine the terror in these young faces.
“Everybody just scrambled for the exits, all you could hear were children crying and screaming,” she continued. “Everyone was upset.”
A spokesperson for the theater said that all customers were offered refunds and complimentary tickets for the gaffe. “We have investigated the incident and can confirm that this was a technical error with the projector and apologize sincerely to the families,” a statement read.
Moviegoers were also invited to a follow-up screening of Madagascar 3 a half hour after the incident.
“We take matters such as this very seriously and are currently working with technicians to ensure this does not happen again,” the statement continued.