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[Prediction] ‘IT’ Will Have the Highest Horror Opening Weekend EVER

The latest King adaptation is probably going to break all kinds of records.

Set for release on September 8th, Andy Muschietti’s adaptation of Stephen King’s IT is unquestionably one of 2017’s most talked about and hotly anticipated films. In fact, it can already brag about breaking a pretty impressive record. As we told you last month, the trailer shattered global traffic records within the first few days of hitting the net, racking up more collective views in 24 hours than ANY other movie trailer in history. Within the first day, it received 197 million views, shattering record holder The Fate of the Furious‘ incredible 139 million views.

Yes, the IT trailer was viewed more times than the trailer for a film that just broke a massive worldwide record – and the views just keep on rolling in. What can we glean from this information, in regards to the King adaptation’s future box office performance? Well, I think it’s at least pretty safe to say that IT is going to make a whole lot of money on the weekend of September 8th.

But how much? Enough for the film to break yet another record? Probably, yes.

To date, the horror film with the highest opening weekend is 2001’s Hannibal, the Ridley Scott-directed sequel to Academy Award winner The Silence of the Lambs – mind you, other genre films such as Jurassic World, Godzilla, I Am Legend, The Mummy Returns and Kong: Skull Island rank higher on the box office charts, but I think most will agree when I say that Hannibal is the only true horror film out of that batch*. The film grossed $58,003,121 in its opening weekend, giving it the 10th highest grossing opening weekend for an R-rated movie in cinema history.

*If you don’t agree that Hannibal is a horror film, then the highest-grossing opening weekend for a horror film is Paranormal Activity 3, which nabbed $52,568,183).*

One needn’t be a soothsayer to predict that IT will have a domestic opening weekend gross of more than $58,003,121, which would give it the highest opening weekend for a horror movie and also the highest opening weekend for any September release – the current record holder for the latter is Hotel Transylvania 2, which pulled in just under $50,000,000 in its first weekend.

What are the odds that IT shatters both of those records? Well, I must again remind you that the IT trailer was viewed more times in 24-hours than the trailers for both The Fate of the Furious (which grossed just under $100 million domestically in its opening weekend) and Beauty and the Beast (which grabbed well over $100 million). So is it really that hard to imagine, based on the incredible amount of widespread interest in Muschietti’s IT, that it will at least approach that $100 million mark? If you’re asking me, a $58+ million opening is all but guaranteed.

My prediction? IT will have the highest grossing opening weekend for a horror movie in history, which will allow it to break into the top 10 for highest R-rated openings in history.

After that trailer, who *isn’t* going to see IT? It’s an event horror film if there ever was one.


78 Comments
  • Braker

    Hmm.

  • Interesting prediction. The September date is potentially problematic, though – historically it’s a month of subdued openings. Quality and buzz could trump that, but a late summer opening would position the film to do better than it will in September

    • John Squires

      I think September is going to work in the favor of IT. Right around Halloween is when EVERYONE wants to watch horror movies. You throw in the fact that EVERYONE knows Pennywise and is scared of clowns and it’s going to be a HUGE weekend.

      • Alanmac

        That’s the one and only thing I’m not looking forward to about this movie. It’s gonna spark EVERYONE to dress as Pennywise for Halloween. It’s gonna get tired QUICKLY probably to the same level as The Crow back in the day.

        • Flu-Like Symptoms

          Or the Joker, circa ’08. People are STILL doing that.

          • Alanmac

            Excellent point. Originality is completely lacking these days in Halloween costumes.

      • Creepshow

        EVERYONE isn’t afraid of clowns, and EVERYONE doesn’t know Pennywise.

    • REC03

      Yeah im wondering with all the buzz if the studio is kicking themselves a bit for the release date. October or late Summer would have been better. September is a “dump month” like January for studios. The movie is still gonna smash of course but im not sure if its gonna quit meet this hype that articles like this one are predicting.

  • Wil McMullen

    I’m thinking ‘IT’ and ‘Alien: Covenant’ might be the big takers for horror films?

    • Golic

      I predict Covenant will do less than Prometheus, and IT will blow it out of the water.

      • Wil McMullen

        Gesh! You think it will do less then Prometheus? I actually loved that movie btw. I wish there was some way we could wager that bet buddy.

        • Golic

          I’ve never felt disappointment like I did leaving the theater after watching Prometheus, and I’m not alone on that.
          As long as future installments are attached to Prometheus, I won’t be paying money to see them.

          • Wil McMullen

            Yea I know alot of people felt that way. I can kinda understand why as people had expections of it being an Alien film- that lacked any Xenomorph, aside from the ending. In truth i waited until it came out on bluray until i saw it and since i wasnt giant Alien(s) fan to begin with (due to some of those awful sequals) I wasnt expecting much. I actually found myself loving the story and as a result had me stoked for further installments from this series.

  • Andrew Sheridan
    • scotty

      Nice!

  • sliceanddice

    Ever? i think it’ll be big – yes – but we’ll see.

  • KSE1977

    Except I am not sure that “most” would agree with your assessment that Hannibal was a horror film. This site loves to continually push Silence of the Lambs as a horror film, even though it is essentially a fairly standard, if awesomely acted police/serial killer movie. I believe there are plenty on this site who do not agree that Silence and certainly not Hannibal are horror films. At best I lump them in as thrillers. So with that said, you have an even smaller bar for the movie to raise to make a record. I would start at Paranormal Activity 3, an actual undeniable horror film at 52 million…but that is just me

    • John Squires

      Agree to disagree. Either way, my prediction still stands!

    • Stefan Heikel

      Agreed. True horror must have elements of the supernatural.

      • The Fucked Up

        So SAW is not horror? Hostel is not horror? Martyrs? Cannibal Holocaust? Kinda narrows the genre down then doesn’t it?
        Edit: let’s not forget Friday 13th part 1 and the original Halloween, where the killers were human. Only in later parts did the supernatural elements play out.

        • Stefan Heikel

          I’d still call those thrillers but which have elements of horror.

          • The Fucked Up

            Oxford respectfully disagrees with you. And so do I 🙂
            https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/horror
            Of course everybody is entitled to their own opinion. You can call your airline vomit bag a golf club if you want. Good luck at the tee.

          • Alanmac

            Exactly. I think if I was a victim of Jigsaw’s or was being kept in a cage to be eaten by cannibals I’d be WAY more “horrified” than “thrilled”.

    • Darkknight2149

      I also believe that the HANNIBAL series is horror, even if it also falls into other genres like crime and thriller. To me, Hannibal Lecter is up there with Freddy, Jason, Leatherface, Michael, and Pinhead.

  • Biscoito18

    I’ll be there day one!

  • Ocelot006 .

    I have an exclusive for you!!!!! Bride Of Frankenstein is about college girl having visions!!!!!

    • Creepshow

      Holy shit, thanks! Where do you get your insider info from? You must have solid trustworthy connections that know what the fuck they’re talking about.

      • Ocelot006 .

        I’m the exclusive member of ‘Variety Retro: News From Past Of Long Ago’. I get a lot of juicy scoops from them. You know Wolfgang Petersen is directing Batman Vs. Superman for a 2004 release?! A summmer with Batman, Spider-Man, Superman and Catwoman? Crazy! And exclusive! From me!

        • Creepshow

          Wow. Just wow!
          Are you sure you’re not just passing an internet goober’s false tip as “Exclusive News”?

  • pablitonizer

    Let’s hope so, It’s always good to see horror genre smashing the box office. Now, I also think the hype will come to an end when trailer 2 & 3 are release, once they spoil the entire film and we hear Its (character) voice & talking just to react as “WTF did they do?”… call it premonition!

  • Francesco Falciani

    i’m wondering how much it costed to make it!..10M?…20M? or more?

    • pablitonizer

      I think 25-30 M

    • THE God

      cost*

      • Francesco Falciani

        Yep. Sorry my mistake

    • Fredrik Andrés Jansson

      $30 mil this has been confirmed by the director.

      • Francesco Falciani

        Wow that’s a lot

        • Fredrik Andrés Jansson

          lol not really. 150-200 now THATS alot.
          30 mil is considered low in the US.

          But to give some perspective of quality here are some other movies that had the same budget.
          District 9, Se7en, Ghostbusters (orig), SPEED, Looper, Drag me to hell, cabin in the woods just to name a few. 🙂

          • Nathan

            You’re not accounting for inflation on those movies. Some will have budgets approaching 100 million nowadays

  • Creepshow

    Annabelle: Creation is gonna blow this out of the water.

    • Golic

      L M F A O

    • Wil McMullen

      It may do well… But im not sure about it blowing anything out of the water. I sure hope this Annabelle sequal is better then that first unnecessary-ness.

      • Creepshow

        Annabelle is gonna slap that clown like a red-headed stepchild. This is an “Exclusive” prediction. You heard it here first.

        • Wil McMullen

          Lmfao!!! Ur on… We are definitely going to see if ur prediction comes in to fruition buddy.

          • Creepshow

            Well, it’s not gonna. Because Annabelle sucks Pinocchio’s wooden balls.

          • Wil McMullen

            As long as Annanelle’s next installment delivers, I wouldn’t care whose wooden balls she is sucking on.

  • lincoln sinclair

    Why is there so much interest in this? I’ve been an avid SK reader since jr. high(not so much anymore), and interested even before that because my mom was on an SK kick in the early 80’s, so I remember those old paperbacks lying around the house. I enjoyed the book well enough when I finally got to it, but it certainly didn’t grab me like some of his others. So what gives? Why does this particular story get to so many people, when I don’t think King accomplished anything with this one that stands out all that much from his other works at the time? I also didn’t relate to the TV movie freaking out my sister and my school friends either. I thought it was pretty crappy then, in 1990 at 13 yrs old, and it definitely doesn’t hold up now. I admit I watched that before I eventually read the novel in high school. But so what? I was already well-hooked on King by that point. I never would have thought that this would turn out to be one of the stories that he’s so identified with. What am I missing?

    • scotty

      If you have to ask “why is there so much interest in this?” then you probably don’t have to worry about it, because you’ll never be interested anyway. We sound like we’re close to the same age, and I too read a lot of SK in my youth. That doesn’t have anything to do with the fact that the trailer is freaking awesome and it looks like a solid, well produced horror movie. It doesn’t matter if it was written by SK or Dr. Seuss, it looks like a great movie. If you’re stuck on the novel and expect it to be like the TV miniseries, well then theres no hope for you. Haters gonna hate, as they say.

      • lincoln sinclair

        Kind of a snarky response to an honest question. BTW I’m not worried or stuck on anything other than getting my son into college right now. Just stumbled onto this on my lunch break, and it reminded me how sort of underwhelmed I was with this one compared to a lot of his other stories.

    • Aunty Ro Knows

      I think there’s a lot of nostalgia involved. I want to see it bcz I like a good/bad killer clown movie. I loved Eli Roth’s Clown, Killer Klowns from Outer Space, etc. I like old school monsters. I just like horror movies, period. Shrugs.

      • lincoln sinclair

        I can buy that. Things that make an impression in your youth tend to stick.

    • REC03

      A few reasons imo. First the book is a classic from one of the best known writers of all time. Second people have such nostalgia for the original movie that even though heavily flawed scared so many kids and is a big part of the fear of clowns. Third it is a legit amazing story that a lot of people can identify with. Dealing with the struggle of being a kid and then growing up and dealing with your past.

      • lincoln sinclair

        Maybe I need to re-read it. I think my son has a copy somewhere.

  • Andrew

    i agree. not saying it is going to be the BEST horror movie ever, but it will have the biggest opening.

  • Aunty Ro Knows

    I’ll just repeat what I said on FB All
    this hype is starting to worry me. I fully expect to be entertained but
    these expectations are so high, I don’t want a backlash just bcz
    someone’s favorite scene didn’t get included. Know what I mean?

    • James

      Nothing You can do about that. An adaptation of a book this size is always going to have complaints.

    • Golic

      There’s so much from that over bloated book that I hope isn’t included.
      King needs to hire a better editor, know what I mean?

      • Jada Maes

        I admire him for admitting his writing needs more editing many times. On the other hand, would YOU want to be the editor known for chopping a King book down to size?

  • Nathan

    I’ll just watch the original.

    • Golic

      Have fun with that snoozefest.

  • Jada Maes

    “Event horror movie…” I can get behind that idea. I don’t want horror to go super mainstream and be just another fad (mostly cuz I always feel horror is the one genre with no need to worry about what it is), but goddamnit, I’m ready for some darkness at the local Cineplex.

  • Vesuvian Villain

    The most important thing this movie can do is prove R-rated horror movies can make much more money than PG-13 shitfests. Deadpool made the difference in action movies, this can make the difference for horror. If the movie actually turns out good, that’s another plus.

  • macguffin Fifty four

    I think this is creating way too much expectation and setting everyone up for a fall. First, horror doesn’t do as well at the box office. Period. The list above is proof of that. Second, just because a trailer is viewed a bazillion times doesn’t mean a bazillion people watched it. This book has a devoted following and every one of us has watched the trailer a ton. Doesn’t meant as many people or more are interested in this over the Fate of the Furious, just that either the trailer for it was better and people wanted to watch it more and/or that the fan base is more eager to see the trailer for IT. Plus, September movies don’t generally do as well. But here’s hoping you’re right!

    • Jada Maes

      The signs are good so far though. Get Out made a metric shit-ton of money, which means horror is still viable. The story has multigenerational appeal, and King’s name has actual weight even with casual horror fans (by which I mean people who thought the Saw movies were scary somehow). You’re right that everyone’s expectations don’t need to be sky high; just hope for good quality and enough dough to justify Part 2.

      • Modok

        I would just qualify that by noting Get Out isn’t necessarily a sensation because of its horror, but because of its social commentary. It attracted a wider audience than a standard horror movie would.

  • I’m so excited, I’ll see on theaters for sure.

  • Bloodspatta

    Hmmm. I’m not sure about EVER, but no doubt New Line have got a big hit on their hands. If they continue with the excellent marketing and the reviews are good then they have nothing to worry about.

  • Brian VonDerahe

    I predict that Alien Covenant will perform better than IT

  • DBZEROGRAVITY

    it damn well better

  • You’re so full of crap.

  • Mr. Screamer

    I remember when people were predicting a $50 million opening for Scream 4, and saying it would become the highest grossing in the series. No.

    • nicholasmwalker

      scream 4 bummed me out so bad. i remember reading about how it was going to be so topical and fresh and they basically just added web cams

      • Mr. Screamer

        Yeah, true. But at least it’s fun to watch and the mastermind killer’s motive is really cool and entertaining.

  • nicholasmwalker

    fate of the furious strikes me as being more of a “lowest common denominator” movie. people were basically planning on seeing it once they heard they were making another one. “it” on the other hand has more dyed in the wool fans, and i’ll bet anyone reading this article watched the trailer at least a dozen times, so the number of views doesn’t necessarily translate to number of people viewing. but then the fate of the furious trailer basically looks like all the other furious trailers so you watch it once and call it a day. just my thoughts. i don’t think you can really compare that data accurately. but regardless of how it compares to fate of the furious, there is definitely a staggering amount of buzz around this film so i’m sure it will do well in the box office. i hope it’s a critical success as well

  • Dennis Chenier

    Let’s hope it does well but I don’t think it’ll break any records. I’ll predict a 41.3 million weekend, which is amazing, but not record-breaking.

  • The IT trailer in itself was a viral sensation for the general masses. Keep in mind the reaction from many of those people was a solid “Fuck No”, as in they’re not going to see it. Not because it doesn’t look good, but because they don’t do horror. They saw the trailer because it’s being shared by everyone and their Mom.

    It will open big, but not THAT big. My guess is around 45 mil, I’d say 50 is the ceiling.

    Also worth nothing that despite all those trailer views, Fate and the Furious actually had a much, much smaller domestic opening than the previous film. It smashed the worldwide opening because it opened to the international market simultaneously (i.e; 60+ market opening weekend vs F&F7 opening in around 30 at release).

  • Golic

    I think we can all agree that as long as it does good enough(critically/box office) to warrant filming the second half of the story; that’s all that really matters.

  • Modok

    I would’ve bet that something like The Conjuring 2 was the box-office champ. I’m really surprised by how modest the opening weekends are for horror movies. I know they seldom have huge openings, but I really thought something would’ve at least cleared $60 million by now.

  • Halloween_Vic

    I’d say $40-$50 mill at most for the opening weekend. Trailer views doesn’t really mean much to be honest.

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