DENVER (CBS4) — If you’re looking to dress up as your favorite Batman villain next weekend, you may need to double-check which theater you’re going to. Landmark Theatres has confirmed they are banning costumes, face painting and masks when the new “Joker” movie hits screens.

Poster for the “Joker” movie. (credit: Joker Movie/Twitter)

We Want All Our Guests to Enjoy The Joker for the Cinematic Achievement That It Is. But No Masks, Painted Faces or Costumes Will Be Permitted into our Theatres. Thank you!the Landmark Theatres Denver/Greenwood Village website states.

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The costume ban at Landmark Theatres comes as people voice concerns about the movie’s message about mental illness and violence. Since its premiere on the film festival circuit, “Joker” has found itself on the defense against those who criticize its violent imagery and are concerned it could fuel violent behavior.

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“Joker” stars Joaquin Phoenix in the title role of the infamous Batman and DC Comics villain. The story centers around the character Arthur Fleck as certain points of his life lead him to become the classic villain.

Joaquin Phoenix stars as "Joker" in the new film from Warner Bros.

Joaquin Phoenix stars as “Joker” in the new film from Warner Bros. (credit: Warner Bros. Pictures)

The concerns over the movie’s release have put a spotlight on the mass shooting at the Aurora theater that killed 12 people and wounded 70 others during a screening of “The Dark Knight Rises” in July 2012.

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Families affected by the Aurora theater shooting recently wrote a letter to Warner Bros. expressing their concerns about the new movie. Specifically, the letter calls on the studio to end political contributions to candidates who take money from the NRA and vote against gun reform, actively lobby for gun reform and make contributions to groups that support survivors and aim to reduce gun violence.

Warner Bros. issued a statement in response that read:

“Gun violence in our society is a critical issue, and we extend our deepest sympathy to all victims and families impacted by these tragedies. Our company has a long history of donating to victims of violence, including Aurora, and in recent weeks, our parent company joined other business leaders to call on policymakers to enact bi-partisan legislation to address this epidemic. At the same time, Warner Bros. believes that one of the functions of storytelling is to provoke difficult conversations around complex issues. Make no mistake: neither the fictional character Joker, nor the film, is an endorsement of real-world violence of any kind. It is not the intention of the film, the filmmakers or the studio to hold this character up as a hero.”

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