Photo Credit: Summit Entertainment
Much has been made of the graphic nature of the birth scene in The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1, but the violent and intense sequence isn't just causing viewer's to hide their eyes or lose their lunch; it has also reportedly caused several moviegoers to experience seizures.
According to ABC News, the bright flashing of red, black and white lights and colors during the climactic birth sequence are thought to have caused the in-theater seizures, known as photosensitive epilepsy.
Brandon Gephart is one man who experienced these seizures. He was attending the film last Friday with Kelly Bauman, when he started "convulsing, snorting, (and) trying to breathe," according to Bauman. Gephart doesn't remember anything, but he awoke on the theater floor and was taken out by paramedics.
A couple in Salt Lake City, Utah, had a similar experience during their screening of the film, when the husband passed out and then began to shake violently.
"He started mumbling and he was blinking on and off with his eyes at that point," his wife told ABC-4 in Salt Lake City. "I was kneeling in front of him slapping his face."
The man, who preferred to remain nameless for fear he could lose his job, said he couldn't remember what happened during the seizure. When the couple returned to the theater the next day to get some of their forgotten belongings, they heard the same thing happened to another girl, though the manager of the multiplex could not confirm that.
"It's like a light switch going off, because it hits your brain all at once,” Dr. Michael G. Chez, medical director of pediatric neurology and epilepsy for Sutter Sacramento in California, told CBS-13 in Sacramento. "The trouble with theaters (is that) it's dark, the lights flashing in there is more like a strobe light."
Breaking Dawn - Part 1 is currently the No. 1 movie in America, and has grossed $489 million worldwide since opening Nov. 18.