Halloween buried the competition at the weekend box office.
The horror sequel from Blumhouse Productions and Universal Pictures opened to an estimated $77.5 million in North America, giving it the second-best showing ever for an R-rated horror film. (It holds the title with a $123 million debut last September).
“Halloween struck a chord of nostalgia, perfect timing and a love of the horror movie experience that can only be delivered at the multi-plex,” Paul Dergarabedian, Senior Media Analyst at comScore, told Urban Hollywood 411.
In fact, Halloween boosted ticket sales this weekend to $168 million, a 71.7 percent increase over the same weekend last year when Tyler Perry’s Boo 2! A Madea Halloween topped the box office, according to comScore.
Jamie Lee Curtis reprises her iconic role in the film as Laurie Strode as she prepares for a final confrontation with deranged killer Michael Myers.
Curtis’ star power added to the movie’s appeal, noted Dergarabedian.
“Strong female characters taking matters into their own hands to defeat pure evil in the form of Michael Myers, plus a brilliant turn by Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode some 40 years later, made the film an irresistible cinematic confection,” he said.
The remake of John Carpenter’s 1978 horror classic also slashed earnings expectations, which had been around $52 million. Instead, the film’s massive $77.5 million haul from 3,920 theaters, added up to an average $19,730 per location.
Elsewhere, A Star is Born held steady in second place, adding another $19.3 million for a three-week total of $126 million.
After two weeks in the top spot, Venom slipped to third with $18.1 million.
Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween took fourth with $9.7 million and First Man rounded out the top five with $8.5 million.
Racial drama The Hate U Give landed in sixth place as the film expanded its theater count.