SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — A Utah movie theater has cancelled plans to host a town hall meeting with survivors of the Parkland, Fla. school shooting.
The change comes less than 24 hours after it was announced the town hall would be held Saturday at the Megaplex Theaters in South Jordan.
In a statement released Wednesday afternoon, Larry H. Miller Megaplex Theaters said it pulled out of the agreement because it “appears to be escalating into a potentially contentious situation.”
The theater’s decision follows a report by our partner, The Salt Lake Tribune, about the Utah Gun Exchange following the Parkland students around the country in a military-style armored vehicle.
While saying it supports important and respectful dialogue on issues that impact the community, the company said in the statement, “After careful consideration, we have decided to cancel the event at Megaplex because our venues are focused on providing a safe, world-class movie experience for our guests, which include families and children.”
Organizers of the event, March for Our Lives SLC, retweeted the Tribune article and added a response:
“We are heartbroken and blindsided by this turn of events, and even more so by the inappropriate behavior and intimidation tactics by outside groups that led to these circumstances. We sincerely apologize to our supporters and will provide updated information as soon as possible.”
The theater will refund the deposit that was made and help organizers find a suitable location to hold the event which was scheduled for 6 p.m. Saturday at the South Jordan theater complex.
Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School who survived the shooting that left 17 people dead in February had planned to speak at Salt Lake Community College on Saturday afternoon, but the the location and time were changed to give the group enough time to get to Utah from Colorado.