Eclipse Theater pulls two Las Vegas shooting documentaries away - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU


Eclipse Theater pulls two Las Vegas shooting documentaries away from lineup

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The Eclipse Theater is shown on March 16, 2018. (Adam Herbets/FOX5) The Eclipse Theater is shown on March 16, 2018. (Adam Herbets/FOX5)

Two separate filmmakers who were attempting to pay tribute to 1 October victims have accused the Eclipse Theater of unprofessional and insensitive conduct by failing to screen their movies.

Charlie Minn, the director of A Nightmare in Las Vegas, said his film was supposed to debut on Friday at the Eclipse.

"They were very enthusiastic. They said, 'This is the kind of film that we want to play,'" Minn described. "They pulled it, and the way they pulled it was completely unacceptable and beyond unprofessional... You would think they'd be a little more sensitive towards it, but they don't care. They didn't get shot. They don't care."

Minn said the Eclipse ignored him for at least a month before an employee told him they changed their mind, without specifying a reason. A spokesperson for the theater told FOX5 they did not screen Minn's film because he did not sign a contract or make a deposit. Minn said that was a lie.

"They know what they did," he said. "How could I believe anything coming out of their mouths? ... You don't tell someone you're going to do something and then just pull out like a coward."

Months prior to Minn's negotiations, another filmmaker said he never even got the courtesy of a phone call when the Eclipse started ignoring him.

Ramsey Denison, the director of What Happened in Vegas, said he had come very close to finalizing a deal with the theater.

"(The sales manager) was very enthusiastic about the film and even stated in an email, 'I'm personally sold on a three-week run,'" Denison said. 

Denison said the sales manager was also slightly "hesitant" because of the "controversial subject matter." The film is very critical of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. 

"We have a good working relationship with Metro, and they may be afraid that screening this film could jeopardize that relationship," the employee wrote.

Eventually, the manager wrote that two Metro officers had stopped by the theater, Denison said.

"They want nothing to do with us after the LVMPD pays their theater a visit, and I don't think that's a coincidence," he said. "That's illegal. You're not supposed to do that."

The Eclipse Theater has not offered an explanation as to what happened with Denison's film.

Metro ignores request for public records

Many of the victims and survivors who told their stories through the documentaries have been upset that the film had not played in Las Vegas. So far, Denison's film has only screened at theaters in New York and California.

Shannon Caffey and his wife, Andrea Latham Caffey, appeared in Denison's film. They said they still struggle through nightmares because of the shooting. They also said it's incredibly important for people to hear victims' stories in order to prevent horrible conspiracy theories.

"We're tired of being called crisis actors. We're tired of people saying that it did not happen. It did happen," Andrea Caffey cried. "We wanted to go in there and see. Wow. That we beat this. We lived. We made it. And (we wanted to) pay respects to the people that didn't."

Minn and Denison have never met, but once they heard about each other's stories, they spoke on the phone. Minn said he has no way of knowing whether Denison's theory is true.

"I can't speak for how they dealt with other people, but if you ask me no one should ever visit that theater ever again," Minn said. "Their job is to play movies... If they're more concerned about their relation with the police, I think they have their priorities wrong."

"I'm sure (the Eclipse) will deny it, because what are they going to do?" Denison asked. "Say, 'Oh yes! The LVMPD came over and intimidated us!'"

FOX5 filed a Nevada Public Records request with Metro in January, asking to see copies of all written correspondence, including emails, that discuss Denison or his film.

Nevada law states that government agencies must respond to requests for public records within five business days. The department still has not responded, despite multiple follow-up emails and the passage of two months and seven days (66 days) at the time of this story's publication.

"I feel like (officers) have a reason to say they don't want it aired," Andrea Caffey said. "Do I feel that it was the police department that came down and said it? I don't believe so. Do I feel like it may have been some officers saying it? Possibly!"

Future of the films

On Monday, Denison's film will screen for the first time in Las Vegas at the AMC on Rainbow Boulevard. Tickets are already sold out.

Minn's film will open at the Jewel Box theater inside the Clark County Library on April 25, 2018. It debuted in El Paso on March 23, 2018. The film is also set to run in April at two theaters in the greater Los Angeles area.

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