The Aurora Movie Theater Tragedy: Networks Announce Primetime News Coverage Plans

The broadcast networks are detailing their plans for evening news and primetime Friday coverage of the tragic shooting spree at an Aurora, Colo. movie theater that left 12 people dead and at least 38 others injured.

On ABC, Diane Sawyer will this evening anchor a special edition of ABC World News, with David Muir reporting live from the scene in Colorado. At 10 pm, Chris Cuomo will anchor a special live edition of 20/20, also from Aurora. Nightline, at 11:35 pm, will feature live team coverage from Colorado.

CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley will broadcast live this evening, from Aurora, while a special 48 Hours: Tragedy in Aurora will replace regularly scheduled programming at 8 pm.

On NBC, Brian Williams will present Nightly News live from Aurora, while Ann Curry will anchor a special edition of Dateline at 9/8c.

The shooting happened at a midnight Thursday premiere of The Dark Knight Rises. The shooter, identified by police as James Holmes, 24, of Aurora, arrived at the theater toting at least four firearms — an “AK type” rifle, a shotgun and two handguns, says CNN. Holmes first lobbed a canister of tear gas through a rear exit door before entering, wearing a gas mask, and opening fire.

Holmes was arrested shortly after the massacre, without resisting.

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  1. Mína says:

    Forgive me, but if someone is angry enough with the world to purchase tear gas, explosives, a variety of guns and booby-trap their apt., maybe it would be more cost- and energy-efficient if they just jumped off a bridge.

    • lariet50 says:

      Solid point.

    • me says:

      Clearly, seeing as he went to great lengths to protect himself (vest, gas mask), he fully intended to survive.

    • The Annoyed Elephant says:

      Why have him jump off a bridge when he can be thrown off.

      Or a cliff. I’m not picky.

    • Angela says:

      Honestly, that’s not a bad idea. There are so many choice words I could use for this creep.
      My god, what a horrific story. My thoughts go out to all those who were affected, and my condolances to all who lost someone to this insanity. I just don’t understand…

    • Templar says:

      Because he was desperate for fame and notoriety, not death. He protected himself so he could enjoy becoming a footnote in history. He will live for years in prison or a psychiatric facility enjoying the spotlight during endless appeals.

      • taran63 says:

        And sadly he’ll get at least part of what he wanted.

        I understand why a story like this has to be all over the news, because it is a big deal, and people want to know what happened. But I wish the story could be told without ever once mentioning the name or showing a picture of this psychopath. That way he can remain the nameless nothing that he is, and not get a shred of fame or infamy from his horrific actions, just a lifetime jail sentence until he dies in jail or is executed.

  2. skilman says:

    What is the point of these hour long shows? The regular news cast will cover the story. Thw whole story is some nut with a gun shot up a movie. Is there really more to it than that?

    • D'Arcy says:

      Don’t be insensitive. This is a big deal.

      • beef says:

        It’s definitely a big deal, but the news networks and rushing to applying context before all the facts are in. That’s why they should stick to standard coverage I think.

    • The Annoyed Elephant says:

      Outside of the tragic loss and injury of so many people, we really don’t know what else we’ll find out about the story.

      1. Did this young man show signs of issues that should’ve precluded him from acquiring the guns he had?

      2. Were patrons in the theater prevented by theater ownership from having guns to defend themselves with?

      3. In the Denver metro area, is there a building tall enough to throw this guy off of so we can see if he bounces when he hits the pavement?

      Inquiring minds want to know.

  3. Kfuller says:

    Too much coverage for others to get ideas! He wanted the spotlight and that’s what we’re giving him!!

    • Mrs. Peele says:

      I totally agree with you – the reason he took such precautions to not get harmed himself, shows that he wanted to live to see the ‘fruits’ of his game plan played out. He let himself get caught, he didn’t try to escape (from what I heard first thing this morning). Updates are constantly on the news and the media is feeding his ego – this is what he wants and they are giving it to him. He may not care what happens to him, but his name will now be added to history as another infamous mass murderer and that is what most if not all of these people want. And it might also set off a barrage of others doing the same thing just to get their ‘immortality’. I haven’t watched the news as yet being out most of today – but giving extra time to this man is just what he wants.

  4. Kfuller says:

    We give these kind of people what they want~ attention!!! Prayers with all of the people and families involved!!!!

  5. Jessica says:

    why are all of the networks covering this. It is just giving the other crazies ideas. It is also doing what I suppose the killer wanted, he wanted the attention. If he didn’t want it he would have turned the gun on himself, but instead he decided to stay alive so that he could re-live the shooting over and over again when the news shows the story.

  6. Cindy says:

    It’s true that these bastards want attention for themselves. It’s a dilemma as to what to do l guess.

  7. Frank says:

    “Because he thought it was good sport. Because some men aren’t looking for anything logical, like money. They can’t be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.”

    Sure explains this person’s motives. It’s the only reason why he would dress up like Bane(the villain from the movie) and harm the lives of people at a movie theatre of all places.

  8. Mína says:

    And to anyone questioning why these networks would broadcast their hourlong specials, tact will always take a backseat to greed in any titan industry

  9. TV Gord says:

    I’m sick and tired of the holier-than-thou attitude that the media shouldn’t cover this. We are at a time in history when WE ARE ALL THE MEDIA! Whenever anything out of the ordinary happens, all sorts of people whip out their phones and record all of the gory events, sometimes with even less tact than the legit media uses.

    There used to be a time when all of you media consumers could sanctimoniously wag your judgmental fingers at the media, but you can’t do that anymore. Even if you personally don’t go for your cameras when these things happen, enough people do to prove that its a human instinct to try to capture these moments and tell others about them.

    • Mrs. Peele says:

      What you say is true to a certain extent but, there is reporting the news and ‘sensationalizing’ the news and that’s what is being played out here. Constantly being given the same information over and over again, and not knowing or able to verify it at the time it’s happening is not good. Remember what happened with the so called ‘witness’ in the OJ police chase from a few years ago? He was on the air giving information which was wrong and it went out over the air.

      • TV Gord says:

        OJ was 20 years ago, not a few years ago. The thing is…we ALL know the news is not going to limit itself. When you feel you have heard enough, YOU have to turn it off. When you need more, then you turn it off again. It’s no longer realistic to expect the media to monitor how much news you need. They are going to give you everything. If you can’t handle it, YOU have to turn it off. When you’re ready for more, YOU can turn it back on. That’s the reality we’re living with today.

  10. Alan says:

    ok people lets get back to the issue at hand here, 12 people left their homes to go see a movie and will never be able to return. i think thats more important than arguing over how the news companies are acting like vultures.

    • Sha says:

      I agree. Please remember the victims and keep their stories at the forefront. They matter most in this situation.
      I’m from Toronto and there was a mass shooting here just a few days ago with over 20 people shot. I dread turning on the news these days.

  11. Kate from Canada says:

    I understand that people want to understand what happened, but is understanding even possible for any sane person? I am afraid that we are giving this person the attention he wants. I hope wherever he is, he does not get access to the papers or to the television. I am so depressed today I don’t know what to do with myself.

    • TV Gord says:

      Kate, I live in Ottawa, and while we are not Toronto, we have had a couple of shootings here in the past week. The thing is…this shooting in Colorado was horrible, but it does NOT happen everyday. It happens, but think of the number of movies that end without incident. It’s like thinking of the number of planes that land safely everyday. Crashes, shootings. They DO NOT happen everyday.

      Life is random. You have no doubt heard about the sports reporter who escaped the Eaton Centre shooting in Toronto last month…but who died today in the Colorado shootings. Yes, it’s a horrendous coincidence…but it is an EXCEPTION. It is a wild story about a woman who had supremely bad luck. It’s an exception.

      NEWS is about the exceptions. News is not about the planes that land safely. It is not about the movies that are screened successfully. It is about the anomalies in our day to day life. You should not worry about the exceptions in life. If shootings at movies or plane crashes become everyday occurrences, THEN you should worry. That’s not where we are now. We will likely wake up for the next several months without any violence that invades our personal lives, and we shouldn’t panic at the possibility that something awful MIGHT happen. If we do that, then idiots like this shooter in Colorado HAVE defeated us. I don’t know about you, but I will not give that asshole the satisfaction.



  12. I just want them to cover the public hanging of this guy. Time to make an example out of a nutcase instead of giving him a warm cell and feeding him 3 nice meals a day on our dime. And they can string up the guy that shot Gabby Giffords with him while they are at it.

  13. I am also gonna say this and you can delete it like Deadline if you feel like it. I have no idea how affiliated you are with them, but if you are you should be ashamed if you know Nikki Fink. She may be, hands down, the lowest-life reporter I have ever seen on the internet. Some of the things she has published and said today are just embarrassing for anyone affiliated with her. If I knew that any money generated from this site went to deadline in any way I would never view a page here again. The most recent of many mind boggling things she has done today is insist on publish the number for TDKR after the studio has said that they will not discuss money this weekend out of respect for what happened. I guess Deadline doesn’t have respect for the dead because she made sure to publish those numbers about 10 minutes after the studio declined because she got them elsewhere. Her statements today have been as arrogant as I have ever seen. Like I said, if you guys do business with her you should be ashamed.