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Warner Bros.' "Joker" topped the October opening-weekend box office record, bringing in $93.5 million despite security concerns over the film's violent themes, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The big picture: The film received stellar praise during its film festival debuts but sparked a backlash from some critics over whether its portrayal of the Batman series' villain — an outcast with a neurological deficit who becomes a mass murderer — could inspire violence. Most notably, families of the victims of the 2012 shooting at a screening of "The Dark Knight Rises" in Aurora, Colorado — another Batman film — penned a letter to the studio citing concerns about the film.
- "Joker" will not be shown at the Aurora theater. Movie theaters throughout the nation have heightened their security measures, with the New York Police Department deploying undercover officers at screenings in the city.
- The FBI also said it was monitoring online activity in response to the film and has encouraged citizens "to remain vigilant and to promptly report suspicious activity to law enforcement,” according to a spokesperson.
What they're saying: "Neither the fictional character Joker, nor the film, is an endorsement of real-world violence of any kind," Warner Bros. wrote in a statement obtained by WSJ.
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