Arts&Culture

"IT" Smashes Box Office Records With $123.1M Opening

Darren Aronofsky's mother! may have suddenly popped up out of nowhere in its publicity push, and it has quite the list of names in its cast, but it's also only opening at 2,500 theaters according to Mojo.

That number beats the opening weekend box office of Spider-Man: Homecoming, which earned $117 million during the first weekend of July, making It the third highest opening weekend of 2017, behind Beauty and the Beast and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. $7.2 million of "It's" domestic grosses are coming from 377 Imax screens. "The stars aligned on this, and we still have some room to grow for the weekend". Rotten Tomatoes gave it an 87% rating. Its gender breakdown is reportedly 51 percent female and 49 percent male.

In fact, It enjoyed the biggest opening weekend ever for a horror film, and only came second to Deadpool's $132.4 million opening when it came to R-rated films. That's even with less theaters showing the movie thanks to Hurricane Irma in Florida forcing the closure of 175 theaters this weekend. That's a huge win for a movie with an estimated $35 million production budget. That's the record for a horror film, and a substantial comeback for Hollywood after almost three months of low numbers.

The prior year, Warner assigned oversight of "It" to its New Line Cinema unit. Most of that sum comes from the US$70.3 million it's earning in China. Mama director Andy Muschetti stepped in as director.

Alongside Bill Skarsgard as the demonic clown, the film stars youngsters including Stranger Things' Finn Wolfhard, Midnight Special's Jaeden Lieberher and Sophia Lillis, who has been tipped as It's breakout star.

That leaves Open Road's "Home Again" trailing far behind.

Keep reading to see how the top films at the box office this weekend stack up. Warner Bros. hopes to release the sequel in the fall of 2019. R-rated horror movies just don't do this type of business.

The success of "It" comes after a tumultuous and underperforming summer movie-going season that left the year-to-date box office down almost 7 percent from last year.

Find out more about the It box office below.

"Horror is the least scary genre when it comes to profitability and has nearly no peer when it comes to the cost/benefit analysis", said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at comScore, Inc. A handful of hits, like "Despicable Me 3" and Warner's "Wonder Woman", took most of the buzz.