Published July 20, 2012
The studio behind "Batman: The Dark Knight Rises" expressed their shock and extended their condolences to the victims of a mass shooting at one of the film's midnight screenings.
"Warner Bros. and the filmmakers are deeply saddened to learn about this shocking incident," the studio said in a statement. "We extend our sincere sympathies to the families and loved ones of the victims at this tragic time."
In a phone interview with FOXNews.com Friday morning ‘Dark Knight Rises’ producer Michael Uslan also expressed his deep sadness for those lost in the tragedy and their loved ones. He said he would be suspending his media appearances out of respect for those killed and injured in the tragedy.
The suspect, identified by federal law enforcement officials as James Holmes, 24, is in police custody. KUSA reports that Holmes kicked down an emergency door at the theater, threw in some type of a smoke bomb and began shooting when moviegoers started to run.
Witnesses say they heard a series of explosions and up to 20 gunshots after the scene grew chaotic. About 100 witnesses were taken to a local high school to be questioned by police.
The midnight showing of "Batman: The Dark Knight Rises" was setting box office records as the tragedy occurred.
Deadline.com cited a Warner Bros. exec, interviewed before hearing news of the massacre, saying that the midnight box office was forecast to pass "The Avengers" as the highest grossing midnight showing of all time.
There were over 3,700 screens in the U.S. showing midnight screenings of "Dark Night Rises."
The online ticket site Fandango had over 2,500 weekend sold-out showtimes on Fandango, the most the 12-year-old company had ever seen, Deadline.com reports.
What the massacre at the Colorado movie house does to weekend turnout remains to be seen.
The Dark Knight Rises is set to play on 4,404 screens in the U.S.
-- Diana Falzone contributed to this report.