Police on Sunday intervened in two cinemas in Athens to remove minors from the screening of the movie "Joker" which has an "R" rating for violence and disturbing content.
The incidents occurred at the cinemas in the Mall in Maroussi, northern Athens on Saturday and the Aelo cinema in Kypseli on Sunday.
According to a spokesman for the Greek Police, the interventions followed calls to the police's 100 phone line by two women who said they were employees of the Culture Ministry and reported the presense of minors at the cinemas in question.
In both cases, the minors were located and transferred to their parents who took them to their local police stations. Prosecutors are to decide whether to press any charges.
The Culture Ministry, for its part, denied giving any kind of order to any of its employees to intervene over minors watching the film in question and said it would seek to determine whether the women in question wereactually employees and take the requisite disciplinary action against them.
Commenting on Instagram, former leftist premier Alexis Tsipras praised the film for tackling two major issues – mental illness and bullying – and condemned the police's intervention at the cinemas, posting a photograph superimposing the face of Citizens' Protection Minister Michalis Chrysochoidis on an officer chasing the character of the Joker played in the film by Joaquin Phoenix.