Colorado movie theater reopens after deadly shooting

A banner is placed near the the Century 16 movie theater Sunday, July 22, 2012 in Aurora, Colo. Twelve people were killed and dozens were injured in a shooting attack early Friday at the packed theater during a showing of the Batman movie, "The Dark Knight Rises." Police have identified the suspected shooter as James Holmes, 24. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

January 17, 2013 4:18:04 PM PST
The Colorado movie theater where a gunman killed 12 people and wounded 59 others last summer reopens Thursday evening.

A private ceremony billed as a "night of remembrance" starts at 5 p.m. Colorado's governor and Aurora's mayor are expected to attend.

Officials distributed 2,000 tickets to victims and their families. Some families, however, are boycotting the event.

"The fact that we were being used as pawns," said Jessica Watts, cousin of a shooting victim. "That they were using us as momentum for their public ticket sales by telling the public, 'well look, the family members of this massacre came back, and it's okay for them to come back and it's going to be okay for you guys too.'"

Some victims say it's important to reclaim the theater as part of the healing process.

The theater will reopen to the public a week from Friday.