Today is supposed to be a happy day.

The Dark Knight Rises is opening in theatres today.  There will be lots of people anxiously waiting to see the movie today at theatres around the country.

Many theatres had screenings last night at midnight for the latest Batman movie.  But tragedy struck a movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado.

At 12:30 am (local time) a gunman entered through the emergency exit door of the theatre.  He threw a gas canister into the theatre, before shooting into the crowd.  Twelve people were killed (originally 14 reported) and several dozen are injured.  The suspect was apprehended by police outside the theatre.  He was brandishing two pistols, a shot gun, a bullet proof vest, tactical helmet, gas mask and what appeared to be an assault rifle (source).

Details of the gunman’s motive have not come forth yet.  The suspected gunman has been identified as 24 year old James Holmes.

As I said at the top of my column, this was supposed to be a happy day.

My heart goes out to the victims and their families of this horrible tragedy.

It sickens me.

I couldn’t believe it when I heard it on the radio this morning.

It just makes me wonder, what does this do for The Dark Knight Rises in theatres right now?

Will people be afraid to go to the movie?

Will there be increased security at movie theatres in fear of a copy-cat incident?

Those questions may lead to more fear mongering, but I bet you those thoughts are going through people’s heads right now.

The other question is what was the gunman’s motive?  Does this shooting spree have anything to do with the Dark Knight, or was it just an isolated incident?  Could any movie been on that screen and this would have still happened?

This is one of the worst tragedies to ever happen to our hobby.  Super heroes are our hobby.  Whether it’s on the printed page or the silver screen, it is something we love and enjoy.  As a fan collective we need to rally together and send our thoughts and prayers to the victims of this tragedy.  And hope that it never, ever, happens again.

Photos courtesy CBSnews.com.