“Even with two months remaining, 2017 has already become the biggest box office year ever for horror,” The New York Times wrote last week.
It’s often said that horror thrives when the world is in turmoil, so I suppose it should come as no surprise that the genre has been kicking ass here in 2017. As pointed out by The Wrap today, horror “has generated approximately $1.1 billion in revenue” at the domestic box office this year, which is HUGE cause for celebration.
Of course, the biggest horror success story of 2017 was Andy Muschietti’s IT, which has to date generated over $324 million – if we’re not adjusting past numbers for inflation, that makes IT the highest grossing horror film in the history of cinema. If we are, well, The Exorcist still wears that crown. But that’s beside the point.
The year kicked off with another incredible success story, as M. Night Shyamalan’s Split grossed $138 million domestically. Jordan Peele’s Get Out arrived just one month later, becoming one of the most talked about movies of the year while also pulling in $175 million.
Sequel Annabelle: Creation was also a big winner in 2017, impressively scaring up $102 million at the domestic box office by being far superior to its predecessor.
“For perspective, most years don’t even come close to the heights horror has climbed in 2017,” The Wrap notes. “The highest grossing horror film in 2016 was “The Conjuring 2,” with $102 million, a total bested by all four of the horror films listed above.”
More recently, Jigsaw has made $18 million thus far. And let’s not forget clever slasher Happy Death Day, which won big with a $48 million domestic haul. Another surprise hit this year was the shark attack flick 47 Meters Down, swallowing up $44 million despite initially being set for a straight-to-video release.
Bottom line? Horror has kicked ass and made A LOT of money in 2017, more than any other year in horror history. What does this mean for the future of the genre? Well, you needn’t be an expert in these sorts of thing to gather that the future of horror is insanely bright now, with this year’s successes paving the way for so much more horror on the big screen.
We’re in the midst of a golden age, and we sure hope you’re enjoying it.