The record-breaking run of “Minions: The Rise of Gru” over the July Fourth weekend has been marred by a viral TikTok trend that has led to the disruption of some cinema screenings. The #GentleMinions trend has seen youths turning up at screenings wearing suits and filming themselves clapping and cheering to the film. While some of these antics have been good natured, others have resulted in disruptions, complaints, messy auditoriums and refunds, as well as raising issues about copyright protection.
The problems seem most pronounced at cinemas in the United Kingdom, which has led some exhibitors to ban youths dressed up in formalwear from entering the premise, while other cinemas have issued warnings to audiences with such groups prior to screenings. AMC-owned Odeon Cinemas appears to have taken things furthest with an outright ban on “any group of guests in formal attire” from attending screenings of the minions film.
By Thursday 7 July, Vue Cinemas had taken to scheduling special #GentleMininion screenings.