Movie theater chain takes idea from a hater

“Alamo Drafthouse, will there be a male-only screening for ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ or a special screening for ‘IT’ that’s only for those who identify as clowns?”

That’s what Facebook user Ryan Reader wrote to Alamo Drafthouse when it announced a women-only screening of “Wonder Woman” last spring. Some commenters tried ruining the fun online, posting comments critical of the movie theater chain and suggesting it was violating sex discrimination laws.

Alamo’s ever-clever marketing team replied to many of the comments, including Reader’s: “We might actually have to steal that clown idea. Thanks Ryan!”

And they did. On Sept. 9 at the chain’s Austin location, Alamo is planning to host a clown-only screening of “It,” the upcoming movie based on Stephen King’s classic thriller, Polygon reports.

Here are the rules, from Alamo’s website:

For this special Clown screening of IT, all attendees should arrive dressed as a clown in order to attend. Please arrive early and join us in the Barrel O’ Fun beginning at 5:30 p.m. for an IT pre-party where we will have face-painters available for clown “touch-ups,” a photo booth, raffles for prizes, and other terrifying merriment. Please arrive in your own Pennywise best and be ready to float with us.

Here’s a trailer for the film:

h/t Will Lager

  • Gary F
  • Alberto Sappwood

    >Some commenters tried ruining the fun online, posting comments critical of the movie theater chain and suggesting it was violating sex discrimination laws.

    Those darn killjoys. Can’t a business violate public-accommodation laws by discriminating against patrons on the basis of sex without people raising such a stink?

    • Meh.

      2 out of 10 for trolling.

      You can do better.

      • Alberto Sappwood

        Do you support other types of discrimination, or just sex-based?

        • Kassie

          Were men prevented from seeing Wonder Woman? No. Were men prevented from seeing films at the Alamo Drafthouse? No. How is this discrimination?

          • Alberto Sappwood

            >”Were men prevented from seeing Wonder Woman? No.”

            The very act of advertising that they intended to deny people service on the basis of sex was a violation of NY’s public-accommodation laws.

            And the theater admitted it violated the law with respect to the Austin, Texas showings: https://www.guidelive.com/geek/2017/08/08/alamo-drafthouse-offers-settlement-women-wonder-screenings-discriminatory

            Not sure why supposed egalitarians have such a hard time accepting that what the theater did was clearly unlawful sex-discrimination.

          • Angry Jonny

            Not sure why you have your undies in a bunch about it.

          • KTN

            Maybe a prosecutor will charge them, if for no other reason than to sooth your oh so aggrieved sense of lawlessness and outrage.

          • Kassie

            Maybe if men weren’t such jerks about stuff like this, women wouldn’t need a safe place to watch movies like Wonder Women without men around. No one stopped you from seeing the movie, it just stopped you from ruining it for the women who went to the screening. That’s what the MRAs are mad about, that they couldn’t ruin something for women.

          • Alberto Sappwood

            Listen, you either believe public-accommodation laws are a good thing, or you don’t. I believe they are, and they should be followed.

          • Kassie

            So you aren’t a MRA?

            And there are lots of women’s only things that are clearly legal, how is this different? Women’s only health clubs, The Girl Scouts, etc.

          • Alberto Sappwood

            I’m a gay man. I was upset with the Alamo Drafthouse’s advertising when it happened. It’s even more disconcerting that even after the theater itself admitted what it did was wrong, many liberals still insist that discrimination in public accommodation is OK.

          • Kassie

            So like when the Saloon doesn’t allow women in you have done something against that? I imagine that’s upsetting, right? I mean, a safe place for gay men is equally insulting to you I assume.

            Me, I think creating safe spaces for people once in awhile is ok. No one was harmed by allowing a couple screens of a film to be without men since those men could still access the other screenings. I also think the Saloon having some gay men only nights is equally ok as there should be safe places for them too.

          • Alberto Sappwood

            >So like when the Saloon doesn’t allow women in you have done something against that?

            Do I have to have personally “done something” to think it’s wrong? Why isn’t my explaining to people that sex-discrimination is illegal not sufficiently “doing something”? Odd standard you’re applying here.

            >I imagine that’s upsetting, right? I mean, a safe place for gay men is equally insulting to you I assume.

            I’m not interested in safe spaces. I’m interested in stamping out discrimination.

            >No one was harmed by allowing a couple screens of a film to be without men since those men could still access the other screenings.

            That’s a very narrow view of harm. It’s harmful to have business advertising that they intend to discriminate against potential patrons.

          • Kassie

            Having women’s only screenings does not discriminate against men. Discriminating would mean not being willing to serve any men. And as far as I can tell, that’s allowed too legally. Lifetime has a whole facility just for women. If it is discrimination, why is it allowed?

            And all I see is you complaining because a couple screenings of a movie didn’t allow men, yet when presented with something your particular group does, you don’t condemn it. I’m just going to keep assuming you are an MRA, since you don’t deny it and you don’t condemn what the Saloon does.

          • Alberto Sappwood

            >Having women’s only screenings does not discriminate against men.

            Yes. It does. The theater admitted as much.

            >Discriminating would mean not being willing to serve any men.

            Yes. They said they would not be willing to serve any men for the showings in question. Which is discrimination.

            >And as far as I can tell, that’s allowed too legally.

            It’s not. They admitted they violated the law.

            > Lifetime has a whole facility just for women. If it is discrimination, why is it allowed?

            Because public-accommodation laws contain exceptions for such situations.

            >And all I see is you complaining because a couple screenings of a movie didn’t allow men, yet when presented with something your particular group does, you don’t condemn it.

            I do condemn it. You simply assumed that I didn’t.

            >I’m just going to keep assuming you are an MRA, since you don’t deny it and you don’t condemn what the Saloon does.

            Because I didn’t deny your baseless slur, that means it must be true? You’re not going to get very far with that level of critical thinking, dear.

          • Cite the specific law.

          • Alberto Sappwood
          • RBHolb

            Is the movie theater discriminating? Probably.

            Is it worth getting our shorts in a knot? Probably not.

            One of the first things you learn (or should learn) after law school is pick your battles. Not every wrong is going to merit unleashing the full force and fury of the law. Is this hurting anyone in any real sense? Unless you’re hypersensitive and fly off the handle at every slight (“It’s not what he said, it’s how he said it!”), I would have to say no.

          • Alberto Sappwood

            We have the laws for a reason and we have the complaint process for a reason. The theater broke the law, people complained, and the theater admitted it violated the law and settled.

            This is how rule of law is supposed to work.

          • RBHolb

            In other words, the police should give a ticket to everyone they see crossing on a “Don’t Walk” signal.

            Next time you’re in a coffee shop, ask the barista if they have a license to play that copyrighted song.

          • Alberto Sappwood

            >In other words, the police should give a ticket to everyone they see crossing on a “Don’t Walk” signal.

            This is inapposite. We’re not talking about prosecutorial discretion. These are people who have identified rights under law and a mechanism whereby they can seek remedy if those rights are violated.

            I’m not sure why you’re so upset people chose to defend their rights.

            >Next time you’re in a coffee shop, ask the barista if they have a license to play that copyrighted song.

            Am I the copyright holder in this hypothetical? If no, it’s not really analogous, is it?

        • See. I’ll give you 3 out of 10 for this response.

          See if you can go for that elusive “4 of 10”.

          You can do it.

  • RBHolb

    Several years ago, the District of Columbia said that laws against gender discrimination prohibited the “Ladies’ Night” events that used to be popular at certain bars. One proprietor responded by rebranding it “Skirt Night,” giving a discount to anyone who showed up in a skirt. Yes, the discount was given to several gentlemen who showed up in kilts.

    • Jerry

      It is a very stupid man who is opposed to “ladies’ nights” in bars.

      • RBHolb

        There will always be someone who gets his shorts in a knot about stuff like this. He then spend an inordinate amount of time huffing bout how he believes in equal protection of the laws and liberals don’t, blah, blah, blah.

        I don’t know if that’s “very stupid.” I would call it “yet another reason why people avoid you at the rare social gathering you are allowed to attend.”

        • Jerry

          Beyond that, Ladies’ Nights are for mens’ benefit more so than womens’. Don’t these men want women in the bars they frequent? These MRAs are angry they are single but they put forth all this effort to make sure they stay that way.

  • theoacme

    Clowns, Jerry Lewis, the MDA Telethon, and Dean Martin…all from the “entertainment capital of the state”…

    https://youtu.be/75r1Rji8kc8

  • ec99

    “A little song, a little dance, a little seltzer down the pants.”