James Bond fan punched repeatedly in head at Odeon premiere over seat mix-up

A James Bond superfan was repeatedly punched in the head over a "seat mix up" during a midnight screening of the new movie, No Time to Die.

The victim, who will remain anonymous, was set to be one of the first to watch the movie at the 12.01am screening at Odeon Cinema in the Trafford Centre, Manchester on September 30.

The 41-year-old and his friends settled into the £13 recliner seats they had booked online as they eagerly waited for the Daniel Craig 007 thriller to start.

But, soon after, he said an Odeon staff member asked the group to move seats over an apparent booking mix-up with the seat rows and numbers.

When the victim refused, showing a screengrab to prove that he booked the seats he was in, he claims a man repeatedly punched his head, much to the shock of the packed cinema.

He was left with serious injuries, causing him to miss the movie and spend the next nine hours in A&E.

The victim told the MEN: ""This guy popped around from the side of me and told me to move but I said: 'Excuse me I'm speaking to the staff member' and he was shouting 'just get out of my seats'.

"I told him to shut up and he went in and punched me, I was sat down, he was above me, I was looking at the staff from the Odeon, it was a shock.

"I got hit a few times on the head and my hand as I put it up to protect myself before he got pushed away or pulled away.

"Then they started to leave the cinema – we were all in shock and my friend asked the staff member 'aren't you going to stop them?' She then got on to radio to security, and they stopped them outside of the cinema."

The victim was taken to the Costa Coffee outside the cinema screen room where he was given ice for the injuries, before he was told to go to hospital.

He says cinema staff at the time refunded the group's tickets and food purchases and gave them tickets to return to a showing at another time.

But the 007 fan says he remains upset over how he says the situation was handled by both Odeon and GMP – who he says have still not been back in touch with him as they attended the cinema after he'd already been taken to hospital.

He added: ""Film is a massive interest of mine, it's massive escapism, but they've basically now ruined that for me because of their bad system and mismanagement.

"Nobody should be assaulted full stop but one of the last places you expect it to happen is in a cinema.

"We'd gone out of our way to see that showing, the 00.01 showing was the very first one after its release.

"I'm a massive Bond fan and I also didn't want any spoilers, you wait two years to see a film because of a pandemic, it was the most highly anticipated film of the last few years. I didn't want anyone to ruin it, I wanted a nice experience, which is why we booked the recliner chairs especially."

In a statement, Greater Manchester Police said: "We were called at around 12.15 am on Thursday 30 September to a report of an assault in a cinema room at the Trafford Centre.

"A 41-year-old man was injured and an 18-year-old man is under investigation while enquiries continue.

"Anyone with information should contact police online, if able, or via 101 quoting incident 35 of 30/09/2021.

"Details can be passed anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111."

The Odeon Cinema was approached but declined to comment.

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