Australian cinemagoers who had taken their children to watch Peter Rabbit were left ashen faced after the projectionist mistakenly showed the trailer for terrifying new horror film Hereditary.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that Event Cinemas in the Perth sububurb of Innaloo accidentally showed a preview of the film – billed as “the scariest horror in years” – which struck panic in both children and parents gathered in the audience.
Noticing the furore, cinema staff eventually turned off the trailer and apologised to customers by offering them complimentary tickets.
“It was dreadful,” one audience member recounted. “Very quickly you could tell this was not a kid’s film. Parents were yelling at the projectionist to stop, covering their kids’ eyes and ears. A few went out to get a staff member but she was overwhelmed and didn’t really know what to do. Some parents fled the cinema with their kids in tow.”
Event Cinemas is currently investigating how the error was made.
Hereditary stars Toni Collette, Gabriel Byrne, Alex Wolff and Ann Dowd. It follows a woman’s unravelling of increasingly terrifying secrets about her family’s ancestry following the death of her mother. The film picked up steam after its premiere at Sundance Film Festival where it has since been deemed “the most traumatically terrifying horror movie in ages”. It will be released in the UK and US in June.
Some have theorised that the mishap could have been a publicity stunt for the film’s release, but The Independent could not verify this.
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