AMC Theatres have confirmed the firing of three employees from their Metairie, Louisiana location following an investigation into claims of a racial profiling during a showing of Harriet.
According to Nola.com, more than a dozen members of the 504 Queens, an African-American women's empowerment group, were confronted by three AMC Theatres employees that Sunday night.
After the lights came on midway through the showing of Harriet, a group of middle-aged women were asked to show their tickets to prove that they had the correct seats.
"I saw how people were looking at us. It was humiliating," Sandra Gordon said regarding the first incident of the night. "Especially with the movie being shown. We were watching people being whipped, being shot in the head, their children being sold away from them. And then you shut down this movie, this emotional movie, and come to me about a ticket dispute? It felt like the 1800s again in 2019."
The film was then halted a second time by another employee who yelled at the women and accused them of cursing and being disrespectful to the previous worker.
A third employee then interrupted the women again and asked to see their tickets, just as the first employee had done. The women then asked to speak with the theater's manager to receive a refund.
They were given a refund without an apology, but they say that the saga was humiliating.
AMC has since issued a statement apologizing for the incident.
"We apologize for the several missteps and misunderstandings on behalf of our management and film crew that evening, to the serious and justified disappointment of the women you represent," Kevin Connor, the general counsel and senior vice president for AMC Theatres, wrote in a statement.
The company has also set aside two days this month when any high school student in the New Orleans area can watch Harriet without charge, as per the 504 Queens' request.