If The Dark Tower was dead on arrival (our review), scoring a paltry $19 million in its opening weekend on domestic soil, then 2017’s other high-profile Stephen King adaptation, It, is poised for a potentially record-breaking box office splash in three weeks’ time.
Initial tracking suggests Andy Muschietti’s long-anticipated horror reboot is set for a huge $50 million opening weekend in the United States. And that’s merely the conservative estimate. Other analysts believe It‘s debut will scale as high as $60 million, in which case New Line and Muschietti’s R-rated thriller will set a new record for the month of September. The last live-action film to break past $40 million was Insidious: Chapter 2, while Hotel Transylvania 2 opened to around $48 million. That’s the number to beat, even if New Line and Warner Bros. are being cautious in their own internal projections.
But after It‘s creepy first teaser racked up a staggering 200 million views in the space of 24 hours, easily outstripping the competition, then both studios have a right to be confident. Besides, if the early buzz from review screenings is positive – and we’re inclined to believe it will be – then that $60 million ceiling suddenly won’t look so far out of reach. The lack of strong competition will surely work in the film’s favor, too, while the recently-announced IMAX rollout – Pennywise…in IMAX – will only help fan the flames of excitement.
It is, however, important to keep in mind that these numbers merely represent the initial forecast; critics have been quick to point out that even well-known horror properties like Annabelle have struggled to break the $40 million threshold, so there’s a very real possibility that New Line’s It will fall just short of those aforementioned figures. Nevertheless, even if the film were to open in and around $40 million, it’d still be considered a marked success for all involved – and in September, no less.
It Part 1 – The Losers Club will float all the way into theaters on September 8th. A sequel is purportedly on the cards, which would see those pint-sized adventurers confront Pennywise as adults. That being said, New Line is yet to officially issue the green light just yet, but these early signs are very promising indeed.