‘It’ Crushes the Box Office and Sets New Record, Thanks to Clown Fear

From Novel to Film, Stephen King’s Adaptation Crushes the Competition

This weekend, people flocked to theaters en masse as the new horror flick by Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema made its debut. Their new movie, “It,” is expected to shatter records for a film opening in September by grossing approximately $117.2 million at the box office.

It” is an R-rated film centered around a monstrous individual tormenting a group of children. Part of the mystique and horror surrounding the Stephen King adaptation is the fact that nobody really knows what “It” is. But as everyone will observe, its primary distinction is its likeness to a clown.

With an outcome of $117.2 million, “It” will reach even with Spiderman: Homecoming, which made $117 million during its opening weekend. As the third-largest opening weekend in 2017, the new horror film only falls behind Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol 2 and Beauty and the Beast.

Within its own genre, “It” beats out the competition by miles when it comes to opening weekend numbers. In the category of horror, Paranormal Activity 3 reached the highest revenue with $52.6 million. Before that, there was Hotel Transylvania 2 at $48.5 million.

When it comes to R-rated films, the biggest opening was none other than Deadpool, setting the bar at $132.4 million. “It” comes surprisingly close. Warner Bros. expects an additional $62 million from overseas markets, shooting the total revenue near $180 million. The returns are substantial, breaking new ground for the genre, and Warner Bros’ distribution chief Jeff Goldstein gave credit where credit is due:

“There’s something really special about the story itself, the way the movie was made, and the marketing. The stars aligned on this, and we still have some room to grow for the weekend.”

Many moviegoers are familiar with the adaptations of Stephen King and the author’s ability to invoke terror through his stories. But, what managed to allure the mass waves of attendees is the “universality of the fear of clowns,” according to comScore senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian. He added:

“The marketing campaign brilliantly evoked a sense of teenage wonderment, fear, and ultimately bravery in the face of the true evil as perfectly embodied by Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise. That, along with the great ensemble cast of young actors and a movie that delivered on the promise of that marketing, made the film an astonishing over-performer.”

Furthermore, it must help that the terror in the film underscores a compelling story, something lacking in a large percentage of such movies.

You can find “It” in theaters, today. The film currently has an 87% on Rotten Tomatoes and a B+ Cinemascore.