• Since its release on March 1 on the big screen, about thirty screenings of the movie Creed 3 have ended in a fight scene. Scenes filmed and broadcast on social networks.
  • As a precautionary measure or to avoid further overflows, several cinema operators have decided to deprogram it.
  • 20 Minutes investigated why horror or action movies can sometimes end in violent brawls.

Since March 1 and the theatrical release of Creed 3, about thirty screenings in France have been disrupted by brawls. In Saint-Etienne, where about twenty people were arrested. But also in Charleville-Mézières, Thionville, Tours or Ivry-sur-Seine. As a result, to avoid further overflows or as a precautionary measure, several cinema operators decided to deprogram the film. This is particularly the case in Cluses, Annemasse or Dreux.

This is not a new phenomenon. In 2021, the premiere of the film Fast & Furious 9 had turned to pugilism in the same cinema of Saint-Etienne. Two years earlier, in 2019, several screenings of the film Joker, accused of glorifying violence, had been punctuated by incidents in the United States, forcing the police to intervene in the middle of the session. How then to explain that spectators come to blows?

"Manufactures emotions"

"It's not for nothing that we talk about cinema as a factory of emotions," says Emmanuel Ethis, author of the book Sociology of cinema and its audiences. "We love cinema because it is in direct contact with our imaginations and we need stories and tales in our lives. It is for this reason that the public weeps in front of Titanic when they know the end of the story, they are amazed by Avatar or they are frightened with Jaws. Cinema provides feelings. The screening in theaters spreads these emotions, "says the sociologist, also vice-president of the High Council for Artistic and Cultural Education.

"These few fights illustrate a need for narrative and feeding our imagination. But we must not link things mechanically. It is not the cinema that is responsible for all behavior, "insists Emmanuel Ethis.

"The challenge of sharing the most beautiful fight on TikTok"

According to Claude Forest, professor emeritus in film economics, the excesses observed "correspond to changes in society" and have "nothing to do with the film screened". "No incident was noted" during the releases of previous installments of Creed, he recalls.

"The first fight in front of Creed 3 was because of a young woman using her phone during the session. One of the spectators violently attacked her. What triggered it all was that the interaction was filmed and directly published on social media. And from there, the challenge of sharing the most beautiful fight on TikTok was launched, "he analyzes, evoking "a loss of all moral sense".

"The phone diminishes our attention to others"

"People are able to put their cat in the washing machine, film it and then post their video. How can one assume such an immoral act? " asks Claude Forest, pointing to the feeling of impunity on the part of fans of TikTok, Snapchat and other social networks. But also to a tendency to lack of civility.

The use of mobile phones during a cinema session, despite the regulations introduced, is perceived as "intolerable", says the teacher. "The telephone diminishes our attention to others, and consequently, politeness and courtesy. This sometimes leads to the worst behaviors, in the cinema as elsewhere. »

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After the Covid-19 health crisis, "many cinemas have not renewed the contracts of agents in cinemas - so-called mediators - for economic reasons. However, they were privileged interlocutors during lively exchanges between two spectators, "analyzes Claude Forest for whom the presence of mediators made it possible to "dissuade" troublemakers from taking action and "easing tensions".

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