Fans eager to see Guardians of the Galaxy got a disappointing surprise at a Regal Cinemas this week. The debut-seeking crowd watched in horror as the screen before them played the open scene not of the badass comic-based movie, but of 2012's Dreamworks kids flick, Rise of the Guardians. Not the same!
According to irate tweeters, the mixup at the Virginia theater didn't just happen once: after management figured out the mistake, audiences sat through a second round of previews, followed by the wrong Guardians flick, followed by a third mixed-up movie. Yeesh.
For those unfamiliar with the difference between the two (a group which apparently includes the projectionists employed by at least one Regal Cinema), Guardians of the Galaxy is a hilarious, action-packed flick that debuted on August 1st. Rise of the Guardians is a PG-rated kids' animated movie from 2012. It earned a 74% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes! But it's not the debut movie that theater-goers were looking for, though they were subjected to it three times in a row.
Hollywood Reporter says that Virginia wasn't the only place where theaters made the mix-up—tweeters in New Jersey also reported unintended screenings of Rise. CinemaBlend theorizes that the theaters where the mix-ups occurred had labeled the 2012 movie simply as Guardians, and played it at kiddie matinees, leading projectionists to mistakenly cue up the animated flick for opening night crowds.
Of course, the cinemas that subjected ticket-buyers to the wrong movie offered seats at later screenings or replacement tickets to different showings. And Regal Cinemas tweeted a cheeky yet sincere apology to one theater-goer:
Here's hoping if you go see Guardians of the Galaxy tonight, you end up seeing Guardians, not a kiddie movie from 2012. Seriously, it's worth it—so long as the projectionist picks the right flick. [ABC News, Kotaku]