The first Paranormal Activity was the title that originally put Blumhouse on the map as creators of low budget horror flicks that made big waves at the box office, with Oren Peli’s original becoming one of the most profitable movies in history after it earned over $193 million globally on a shoestring budget of just $15,000.
Despite the fact that absolutely nothing of interest happens for the first 95% of the running time, audiences couldn’t seem to get enough, and Paranormal Activity quickly became the latest in a very long line of horror brands that would return to theaters on an annual basis and suffer greatly from the law of diminishing returns in the process.
Over the next few years, the creative well ran drier than the Sahara as the core concept of the first movie was stretched out across five sequels. Box office takings dropped by almost 50% between the fourth and sixth installments alone, but the studio wouldn’t have been losing too much sleep as the brand remained incredibly lucrative.
In total, the Paranormal Activity series has earned $890 million from theaters on combined production costs of $28 million, which makes it the single most profitable franchise that the industry has ever seen, which is why it seems so surprising that we haven’t received a new outing for half a decade.
Of course, no high profile horror brand that can still turn a profit is ever left on the sidelines for too long, and a seventh entry has been in the works since last summer. Paranormal Activity 7 was originally penciled in for release next March, but the movie has now been hit by a twelve month delay and will arrive on March 4th, 2022. Over six years will have passed since The Ghost Dimension by then, so it’ll be interesting to see if the franchise still holds much sway with fans and audiences when it eventually returns to theaters.
Source: Bloody Disgusting