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Fan takes 'The Batman' a little too seriously, releases live bat as a prank during opening night
One audience for The Batman got a little more ambience than they expected.
One audience who caught The Batman over its opening weekend got a little more atmosphere than they bargained for when an actual bat wound up in the theater.
According to KXAN News, a Friday night screening of the Batman at the Moviehouse & Eatery theater in Northwest Austin was interrupted when a live bat began flying overhead during the movie, prompting theater staff to pause the movie, turn on the lights, and take steps to try and get the critter out of the theater. During the pause, some moviegoers took out their phones and documented the chaos, which you can watch over on Twitter.
Despite their efforts to try and lure the bat out of the theater, the Moviehouse staff couldn't get it to leave, so they offered refunds to anyone in the theater who wanted to opt out of the screening. Because it was opening weekend of The Batman, though, moviegoers largely opted to stay and watch the movie with their flying guest.
“Local animal control was immediately contacted, and they have been overseeing the situation to ensure guest, associate and animal safety,” Moviehouse general manager Heidi Deno said after the incident.
Austin is renowned for its local bat population, and while the creatures have been known to make their way into buildings all on their own, Deno told KXAN that the staff believes this particular bat was part of a "prank" played by someone in the theater, who released it from their bag during the movie.
“To ensure a prank like this does not again occur, we will be adding additional security and checking all bags upon guest entry,” Deno said.
The Batman definitely didn't need the extra publicity brought on by mischievous moviegoers, though. The film beat its already-lofty box office projections over its opening weekend to pull in a total of $134 million in North America alone, marking the biggest opening of 2022 so far and the second-biggest weekend of the pandemic era, behind only Spider-Man: No Way Home. That means a lot of people saw The Batman last weekend, but as far as we know, only a select few saw it with an actual bat in the theater with them.