Silverbird apologises after crowd trouble leaves patrons injured
The premiering of one of the biggest films in the history of cinema may have been too much for the Silverbird Cinemas at the Accra Mall to handle.
As cinema-goers worldwide marvelled at ‘Avengers: Endgame’ which hit theatres last weekend, pushing it to a $1.2 billion worldwide opening, some Ghanaian film fans were left fuming about Silverbird Cinemas’ crowd management last Friday.
Videos, shot from outside the theatre, showed scores of eager patrons trying to push their way into the theatre for the screening.
Some even described it as a near stampede that led to serious injury to at least two persons, according to eyewitnesses. The chaos has sparked concern over how seriously the cinema takes crowd control and customer safety.
This prompted disaffected customers to also complain about the purported overselling of tickets for event films like ‘Avengers: Endgame’, though, in this instance, eyewitnesses say persons without tickets managed to force their way into the cinema.
Patrons for the screening this past weekend reported even having to sit on the floor to watch the film. In the past, ushers and management have had to compensate for the extra numbers by bringing in plastic chairs.
The general sentiment is that Silverbird is in a comfort zone because of the virtual monopoly it enjoys by virtue of its prime location at the Accra Mall and some people long for the day proper competition will arrive and keep it on its toes.
The cinema hasn’t responded to a request for comment on the matter. But it has officially apologised for its handling of the event admitting it underestimated the enthusiasm of the crowd.
“The prescreening on Thursday was executed with little to no issues. On Friday however, we got overwhelmed by the crowd and the measures we put in place to control them proved futile, because of the magnitude of people that trooped in to see the movie.”
“The sad incident that happened on the staircase was a result of us underestimating what this movie means to the die-hard Marvel fans of our beloved country,” the company said in a series of tweets.
— Dede by @krymimusic (@ghcounty) April 27, 2019