This weekend is about to introduce a new top film in North America. And it’s a horror film written and directed by … a comedian.
Get Out, the directorial debut of former MadTV and Key & Peele star Jordan Peele, had a solid Friday night at the box office, according to The Numbers.
He commanded $10.8 million and overshadowing the top two films from the past two weeks – The Lego Batman Movie and Fifty Shades Darker.
It hasn’t hurt at all that out of 132 critics surveyed by Rotten Tomatoes all of them – yes, we did say all of them – have recommended the film. There are still more critics to count, of course, but it’s very rare any film gets that kind of wide acclaim.
Even audiences seem to love it, according to the site’s survey of more than 15,500 people, where 86 percent have given thumbs up. Get Out stars Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, Catherine Keener and Bradley Whitford. And it’s a very unlikely first major film project for Peele, best known for his impersonations of people like former president Barack Obama.
What’s more, it’s the second horror hit for Universal Pictures this year. And we’re just eight weeks in. Split was a surprising success for embattled director M. Night Shyamalan, which now has many fans calling for a sequel to his 2000 outing, Unbreakable.
Split spent three weeks at the top of the box office in January, and has now earned $127.9 million domestically.
This weekend will keep Universal solidly on top of the box office charts for the young 2017, now with $421 million domestically through seven films, according to The Numbers. That’s an average of $60.1 million per film, and is well ahead of the $34.4 million per film from Lionsgate in second place.
Lionsgate, of course, has a huge boost from John Wick: Chapter 2, which remains strong despite the entry of Get Out. It finished fourth in Friday early box office returns, just behind Fifty Shades with $2.5 million. Its 15-day domestic total is just under $68 million, already 58 percent above its 2014 gross, and closing in on even topping the first film’s total global take of $76.2 million – something that could be broken this weekend.
Other new films didn’t do quite as well. Both Rock Dog and Collide finished outside the top 10 in Friday night numbers, and likely won’t shift much when full weekend figures are released Sunday.
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