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Theatregoers with epilepsy warned of seizure risk from bright lights in Incredibles 2

June 18, 2018 2:31 PM
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Theatregoers with epilepsy warned of seizure risk from bright lights in Incredibles 2

Blockbuster animated movie has come with warning for people with photo sensitivities

Disney is warning theatregoers with epilepsy not to watch its latest summer blockbuster because several scenes in the movie can trigger seizures because of repeating bright flashing lights.

The animated movie Incredibles 2 opened last weekend at No. 1, grossing more than $180 million US worldwide. The sequel to the 2004 original includes several scenes involving a character using bright flashing strobe lights, often for several minutes at a time.

Such lights have been linked to causing seizures among a small minority people with epilepsy, a neurological disorder that affects more than 65 million people worldwide — including more than a quarter of a million in Canada.

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Veronica Lewis, who posts about vision impairment issues, first drew attention to the issue in a series of tweets that have since been shared widely.

The Epilepsy Foundation subsequently made a request to Disney to post warnings ahead of any showings of the movie, so people can choose whether to watch.

"For those who have been diagnosed with photosensitive epilepsy — or are simply sensitive to flashing lights — and are planning to watch the movie, they should be advised that the flashing lights may trigger seizures in some people," the group said.

The movie studio did just that, asking theatres to post a warning prior to any screenings.

Many theatres showing the film have since posted a bulletin warning it "contains a sequence of flashing lights which may affect customers who are susceptible to photosensitive epilepsy or other photo sensitivities."

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