24-year-old James Holmes is accused of killing 12 people and wounding 58 others in one of the worst mass shooting in U.S. history.
Holmes appeared before a judge for what's being called an "initial advisement".
A decision on official charges and whether to pursue the death penalty is expected to come later.
It's the first real look the public's had of the suspect who has been held in solitary confinement since being taken into custody within minutes of the shooting early Friday morning.
Holmes, sporting dyed orange hair and wearing a maroon jail jumpsuit, is reportedly refusing to cooperate with investigators.