Weekend BO Report: Double Trouble For ‘Halloween’ In A Record October

Written by Dapo Olowu

It’s official: October 2018 is the biggest October on record, but that’s no real surprise considering the B.O. feast we’ve had this month. After both ‘Venom’ and ‘Halloween’ became the two biggest film openings in the month’s history with $80.3m and $76.2m alike, it was only a matter of time until 2014s record of $757.1m would be smashed. As we speak, October 2018 has grossed around $780m, and should reach $800m by the month’s end.

As mentioned above, a large chunk of that came from the Blumhouse horror phenomenon ‘Halloween’. This weekend, the slasher, directed by David Gordon Green (of ‘Pineapple Express’ fame), scared away any competition for a second consecutive number one finish, earning $31.4m in the process.

Being the biggest slasher film in U.S. history (beating ‘Scream’s $103m from 1996) with $126.1m hasn’t stopped ‘Halloween’s appetite for a large body-count, as it aims to become one of the biggest R-rated horrors ever stateside. Currently 6th in the all-time U.S. list, it has its sights realistically on ‘Get Out’ whose $176m leaves it 3rd, and, barring a freak collapse, ‘Halloween’ should fly past this in the next month. On the international front, its near-$50m gross puts the film just $30m short of a $200m total.

Of course, it wasn’t just ‘Halloween’ that contributed to the record month. Both ‘A Star is Born’, with $148.6m, and ‘Venom’ with $187.1m hold nearly 50% of this October’s gross alone, and their latest weekends of $14m and $10.7m delivered a welcome second and third place finish, mirroring last weekend’s efforts. What’s truly astounding are their global grosses: while ‘ASIB’ has smashed through the $250m mark, ‘Venom’ has just reached $500m, with its Chinese release coming next weekend.

From the impressive to the dismal, as Gerard Butler’s newest release ‘Hunter Killer’ sank to just $6.7m in its first 3 days. The $40m-budgeted action-thriller brought in half of the JUMPCUT forecast to join the list of other 2018 B.O. bombs. It’s Butler’s lowest opening since 2012s ‘Playing For Keeps’, and although it’s A- on Cinemascore may provide some legs, a domestic finish of $20m won’t save this from being lost at sea.

It’s a gross that continues a relatively tough year for Lionsgate, who long for the days of ‘The Hunger Games’ and ‘Twilight’. This year, their biggest domestic earner was last month’s ‘A Simple Favor’, which has seen just $53.2m so far. Disappointments like ‘The Spy Who Dumped Me’ ($40m budget, $72m worldwide gross) have been offset by cheaper, enjoyable comedies like ‘ASF’ and ‘Overboard’ ($12m budget, $91.2m worldwide gross), but this still leaves the studio relying on November’s ‘Robin Hood’, to really bring in the cash.

As expected, A24’s ‘Mid90s’ earned $3m from 1,200 cinemas to grab 10th spot, above newbies ‘Indivisible’ and ‘Johnny English Strikes Again’, who grossed $1.5m and $1.6m each. ‘Mid90s’, written and directed by Jonah Hill, opened wide just below that of last year’s ‘Lady Bird’ ($4.1m), but similar to A24s ‘Eighth Grade’ ($2.9m) from July. A similar performance would leave the critically-acclaimed indie film with a total domestic gross of $14m, a solid (if unspectacular) B.O. gross.

A record October, and strong weekends for ‘Halloween’, ‘ASIB’, and ‘Venom’. What does November, with ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’, ‘The Grinch’, and ‘Robin Hood’ to come, have in store? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter and Instagram – we’re at @JUMPCUT_ONLINE

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Weekend BO Predictions: It’s a ‘Halloween’ Holdover As Its Second Week Promises $33m+

Written by Dapo Olowu

The only major wide release this weekend comes in the form of ‘Hunter Killer’, the Summit Entertainment action-thriller and Gerard Butler’s latest vehicle. It’s quite literally a vehicle; mainly set on a submarine, the film draws inspiration from such cinematic classics as ‘Crimson Tide’ and ‘The Hunt for Red October’, but won’t be able to sink ‘Halloween’ in its second weekend.

The slasher sequel looks to draw blood again in its sophomore weekend, with a gross close to $33m. After securing the second biggest October weekend with $76.2m, ‘Halloween’ remains on track to hit the $100m mark by Friday evening. Entering the weekend of its namesake should also welcome a smaller-than-expected drop in the mid-fifties, comfortably placing it above newbie ‘Hunter Killer’.

The pre-Halloween weekend is usually one of little fanfare, demonstrated by last year’s weekend winner ‘Jigsaw’, which topped the charts with only $16.6m. In fact, ‘Halloween’s gross should mark the biggest pre-Halloween weekend #1 in 7 years, since ‘Puss in Boots’ opened to $34.1m in 2011.

Moving onto ‘Hunter Killer’ now and the film, directed by Donovan Marsh, follows a group of Navy SEALs who must rescue the kidnapped Russian president. Alongside Butler, it features a strong cast of Common, Linda Cardellini, and Oscar-winner Gary Oldman, but can’t seem to make best of use of the talent at its disposable, with just 36% on the Tomatometer (but an audience score of 84%).

Will the conflicting critical reception harm its opening? With limited competition in the action sphere (only ‘Venom’ in its 4th weekend marks any real serious opposition), ‘Hunter Killer’ may have real room to breathe (or swim). An opening around $13.6m is optimistic but possible, a gross similar to Butler’s last 2 films ‘Den of Thieves’ ($15.2m opening) and ‘Geostorm’ ($13.7m).

The next release comes in the form of Jonah Hill’s directorial debut,‘Mid90s’, the critically-acclaimed comedy-drama produced by indie darlings A24. Starring Sunny Suljic, Lucas Hedges, and Katherine Waterston, its release into 1,200 cinemas comes after a successful limited cinema roll-out last weekend. The film grossed over $258k from just 4 cinemas, earning one of the best per-cinema averages of the year thus far with $64.5k.

The film follows Steve (Sunny), a 13-year-old in 90s LA who befriends a group of skateboarders. It’ll hope to ramp up its Box Office pedigree with a $3m gross this weekend, enough for 10th place. Finally, ‘Indivisible’, the Christian drama distributed by Pure Flix in just 800 cinemas, will barely reach the $1m mark in its opening weekend.

As ‘Halloween’ tightens its grip on top spot with a second weekend mirroring ‘Venom’, which will end up as the bigger film domestically? Will ‘Mid90s’ reach ‘Lady Bird’ levels of success? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter and Instagram – we’re at @JUMPCUT_ONLINE.

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