The 1967 Casino Royale spoof may not be a very well-remembered moment in Bond-movie history, but it bears a peculiar distinction: in May 1967, the spy-flick parody incited a mob riot. Boston radio station WRKO sponsored a 4 a.m. screening at the Sack Savoy Theater, with free admission — and snacks — for folks in the typical spy gear of a trench coat. When people began to queue hours in advance, the theater decided to run the screening at 2 a.m. instead of 4. The crowd did not take the news well.
The New York Times reported that morning that the moviegoers numbered in the thousands (between 8,000 and 15,000) and that every Boston police officer available was needed to calm the crowd. About 30 people were hurt, including two reporters, and 15 arrests were made. Two fires began inside the theater, and the extinguishing effort soaked the audience. But, for fear of what might happen otherwise, the show went on.