Gentleminions is a slang term that refers to the young men and high schoolers that came to watch the 2023 movie Minions: The Rise of Gru in theaters wearing suits, ties and smoking cigars to show ironic adoration for the film. Multiple TikTok videos documented their arrival, as well as the riots, mosh pits and disruptive cheering they did that often resulted in police shutting down the theaters and showings. The term was coined by the official TikTok account of the Minions in early July 2023. Additionally, a sign that stated it wouldn't let Gentleminions into the theater went viral after being posted to Twitter.
In late June 2023, YouTubers and TikTokers started joking about arriving at the theaters on July 1st, 2023, to see Minions: The Rise of Gru wearing fancy attire like suits, dress shirts, ties and blazers, all in reference to the Tickets To X, Please trend, as well as the Fernanfloo Dresses Up / My Wife's Funeral template (examples shown below).
Starting on July 1st, young men manifested the meme into real life by showing up to theaters wearing suits and other formal attire. For instance, on June 30th, 2023, TikToker ____pan posted a video that used the song "Rich Minion'" by Yeat and showed disbelief over people actually showing up the theater wearing suits, earning roughly 16.8 million plays and 3.9 million likes in four days (shown below, left).
Inspired by the ironic adoration, the official TikTok account of the Minions franchise posted a video on July 2nd, 2023, showing a Minions stuffed animal looking out a skyscraper window while overlayed videos of men in suits played in the background. The video's description read, "Bobspeed you gentleminions," hence coining the term. Over the course of two days, the video received roughly 1.6 million views and 202,100 likes (shown below).
On July 2nd, 2023, TikToker benedicthoward_ reiterated the term "Gentleminions" in a video showing him and his friends getting ready for the movie and then actually showing up at the theater. Over the course of two days, the video received roughly 4,200 views and over 200 likes (shown below, left). On July 3rd, 2023, TikToker raining_ketchup44 posted a video that showed a sign taped onto a window at their theater. It warned about "recent disturbances following the #gentleminions trend" and that "any group of guests in formal attire will be refused entry for showings of Minions: The Rise of Gru." In less than a day, the video received roughly 12,300 plays and 2,900 likes (shown below, right).
The aforementioned warning sign was originally posted on July 2nd, 2023, by Twitter user Tylerlakecanes in a reply to a tweet from DiscussingFlims that announced that Rise of Gru had made roughly $129.2 million in the film’s four-day domestic box office opening weekend. Tylerlakecanes stated in his reply that the sign was posted at his cinema. He received roughly 4,100 likes in three days (shown below).
The aforementioned warning sign was issued due to purported rioting, mosh pits and overall loud disturbances that were happening at theaters during The Rise of Gru's opening week. The mass disturbances led to police arriving at theaters to shut down the showings and kick everyone in attendance out.
The image macro of the sign was additionally reposted to /r/shitposting on July 2nd by Redditor YouCantStopTheReal who captioned it "1984" in reference to the dystopian novel by George Orwell, as well as the Living in 1984 meme template. The Reddit post received roughly 12,600 upvotes in three days.