From the underwhelming debut for The Dark Tower to the record-setting premiere of It, adaptations of Stephen King’s stories are becoming an unpredictable commodity in Hollywood this year.
Just a week after Hollywood had one of its worst summer movie seasons ever, It came along and rewrote the box-office record books.
The first installment of a two-part, big-screen adaptation of Stephen King’s terrifying 1986 novel of the same name, It raked in a massive $117.1 million over the course of its opening weekend, shattering multiple records on its way to having the biggest premiere of all time for a horror movie.
Along with surpassing the $52.5 premiere for 2011’s Paranormal Activity 3 — the previous record-holder for horror or supernatural movies — It also set a new record for September opening weekends, beating the premiere for 2015’s Hotel Transylvania 2 ($48.5 million), and had the biggest opening weekend for any film based on one of King’s stories.
||The Hitman’s Bodyguard
||The Emoji Movie
Director Andy Muschietti’s film, which follows a group of outcast kids who battle an evil entity terrorizing their Maine hometown, even performed well outside of its genre, and impressed both professional critics and general audiences alike.
The film finishes its opening weekend in third place overall for 2017, with only Beauty and the Beast and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 enjoying bigger debuts this year. In fact, if it wasn’t for the wildly successful, $132.4 million premiere of Deadpool last year, It would have the biggest opening weekend of all time for an “R”-rated movie.
The only other new release to crack the weekend’s top ten films was the Reese Witherspoon romantic comedy Home Again, which managed a perfectly respectable $9 million, second-place debut — which offers a great indication of how far apart the gap between It and every other movie was this weekend.
The unexpected three-week reign of action-comedy The Hitman’s Bodyguard was also brought to an end, and the film dropped to third place while adding another $4.8 million to its domestic ticket sales.
This upcoming week features an interesting pair of new releases lining up to challenge It in theaters. Oscar-nominated Black Swan director Darren Aronofsky’s mysterious thriller Mother! has an all-star cast led by Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem and is being marketed as a mystery movie unlike anything else to come out of Hollywood in recent years. Whether it lives up to that hype remains to be seen, but it certainly has a stellar cast, with the two aforementioned actors along with Ed Harris, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Domhnall Gleeson in supporting roles.
Also hitting theaters is American Assassin, an action-thriller starring Dylan O’Brien and Michael Keaton, based on Vince Flynn’s 2010 novel of the same name.