Vue hopes to reinstate Blue Story in cinemas after outrage over ban

The film could be back in the chain’s cinemas from this weekend

CINEMA BAN: Blue Story director Rapman

BLUE STORY could return to Vue Cinemas this weekend following outrage at the film’s nationwide withdrawal.

The cinema chain has revealed it hopes to screen the film and will implement additional security measures to ensure safety at showings.

The film from first-time feature director Rapman was pulled from Vue cinemas across the country after a mass fight broke out in one of the company’s locations in Birmingham on Saturday.

Police attended the scene following reports that young people were armed with machetes.

Showcase Cinemas, also pulled the film after the incident but announced earlier this week it would be reinstating it.

Tim Richards, founder and chief executive, Vue International, said: “The decision to withdraw Blue Story was not an easy one and has left all of us at Vue shocked and saddened to be in this position.”

In a statement the company said it had put in place a number of measures, including increased security, the removal of late night showings and reduced screenings of Blue Story, but the problems persisted, prompting it to cancel screenings altogether.

It said it had identified a link between Blue Story and 25 “significant incidents”, defined as illegal activity on its premises; harrassment, intimidation or any other form of threatened or actual violence towards its staff or customers; any form of public disorder which inhibits the continued safe operation of a site or any activity or event that requires security, medical, fire or police intervention.

Rapman, whose real name is Andrew Onwubolu, told the BBC he felt “bullied” and “cheated” over Vue’s decision and that the Birmingham incident had “no connection” with his film.

Speaking to the BBC, Onwubolu said he questioned whether there are “hidden reasons” behind the removal and if it is “a colour thing”.

Vue has categorically denied race played a part in the withdrawal of Blue Story from its screens.

A spokesperson for Vue said: “We were disappointed to have to make the decision to remove Blue Story from our screens earlier this week, a decision to protect our customers and staff following major incidents connected with the film at 16 of our cinemas all across the country.”

They added: “Following an ongoing review of security to protect the safety of our staff and customers we hope to be showing the film from this weekend with additional security arrangements in our cinemas to ensure everyone can enjoy the film in comfort and safety.”

Responding to the development, Onwubolu tweeted: “Thanks to all of your cries for justice Vue have decided to reinstate Blue Story Movie back into their screens starting this weekend. Thank you to everyone who fought for this movie like it was their own. We made a lot of noise and now we’ve been heard.”

Comments Form

2 Comments

  1. | john

    It’s beyond my comprehension why so many acts of violence have come about during screenings for this film, I’m not against the film but surely we should question why its attracted knife men just as we should question why violence erupts at football matches but not rugby or cricket.
    I’ve never witnessed any acts of violence at a cinema before nor have I ever gone there armed but surely the safety of the public is more important than any film or football match for that matter!
    Its a bad sign that Vue Cinema have to put additional security in place; maybe we need to ask parents to discipline their children to a point where they will be more inclined to seek education and a career rather than a knife or gang!
    We shouldn’t be expecting Vue Cinema, the police, schools or security services to fix problems created in the home that spill out onto our streets.
    The reality is that almost on a weekly basis some young person is being stabbed and killed; I even heard a school girl on a bus telling her friends that she wanted to stab another girl; that’s a parental issue!
    I don’t understand why Vue is being treated like the enemy, I’m sure I’d make a similar decision for this film, football or any venue where serious violence is inclined to break out.
    Ultimately knife crime and gangs are a national security issue; hopefully armed police will be deployed to Vue Cinemas because if this were the Americas, Africa, Middle East or Asia or many countries in the world that’s what would happen.
    These gangs and knife men reply upon soft policing and sentencing to continue their trade; it needs to be stamped on very hard!
    As for the film, will the director personally console the parents of anybody killed or injured at its screenings? Why take the risk!

    Reply

  2. | john

    It’s beyond my comprehension why so many acts of violence have come about during screenings for this film, I’m not against the film but surely we should question why its attracted knife men just as we should question why violence erupts at football matches but not rugby or cricket.
    I’ve never witnessed any acts of violence at a cinema before nor have I ever gone there armed but surely the safety of the public is more important than any film or football match for that matter!
    Its a bad sign that Vue Cinema have to put additional security in place; maybe we need to ask parents to discipline their children to a point where they will be more inclined to seek education and a career rather than a knife or gang!
    We shouldn’t be expecting Vue Cinema, the police, schools or security services to fix problems created in the home that spill out onto our streets.
    The reality is that almost on a weekly basis some young person is being stabbed and killed; I even heard a school girl on a bus telling her friends that she wanted to stab another girl; that’s a parental issue!
    I don’t understand why Vue is being treated like the enemy, I’m sure I’d make a similar decision for this film, football or any venue where serious violence is inclined to break out.
    Ultimately knife crime and gangs are a national security issue; hopefully armed police will be deployed to Vue Cinemas because if this were the Americas, Africa, Middle East or Asia or many countries in the world that’s what would happen.
    These UK gangs and knife men reply upon soft policing and sentencing to continue their trade; it needs to be stamped on very hard!
    As for the film, will the director personally console the parents of anybody killed or injured at its screenings? Why take the risk!

    Reply

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