Box Office: “It” smashes records, maybe it’ll clear $100 million on its opening weekend

box2Consider this. Horror movies typically have a box office ceiling, which the “Conjuring/Insidious” and more recently “Annabelle” folks have pushed against.

Consider too, that Stephen King’s brand is 40 years old and his track record with film adaptations has been spotty, if not downright cursed. Add to that the fact that “Dark Tower” bombed and “Mr. Mercedes” is on TV right now and he’s once again over-exposed.

Throw in two inanimate horrors named “Harvey” and “Irma,” which all but take two huge states off the box office table, suppressing turnout at the movies this weekend.

And damned if “It” isn’t blowing up records, left and right, on its opening days in theaters. Projections ranged from the $60s to the $80s. But says that thanks to huge Thursday night numbers, and an epic Friday, the clown-in-the-sewer thriller might hit $101 million for the weekend. A horror movie opening weekend record, a fall (not holiday) record, a record for R-rating thrillers, etc. 

I was sure the hurricanes were going to suppress turnout, but nope.

R-rated, horror, a remake of a TV miniseries and a tried and generally not true branded writer, and Hollywood is probably wishing this thing had opened last month. If might have saved a sinking summer. Reviews, if anything, helped that along. 

Reese Witherspoon entrusted her big screen comeback to reliable “women’s picture” queen Nancy Meyers’ daughter. Reviews were brutal, and the picture — with a lot of no-name love interests (and Michael Sheen and Candace Bergen) in support, SERIOUSLY unoriginal and unfunny Hollywood observations about Hollywood types — those “types” cast with an onslaught of boring, charisma-starved players, and damned if it isn’t sputtering out.

Not totally bombing, but $8-9 million? That’s a “Back to cable with you, Ms. W.” message. And for Hollywood, a reminder that nepotism is the mendacious mark of mediocrity. 


About Roger Moore

Movie Critic, formerly with McClatchy-Tribune News Service, Orlando Sentinel, published in Spin Magazine, The World and now published here, Orlando Magazine, Autoweek Magazine
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