Stephen King’s ‘It’ Smashes First Week Box Office Record With $117 Million Haul

Stephen King’s horror thriller It is on track to gross the largest September debut weekend in industry history for a horror movie flick.

Entertainment Weekly reports early first weekend estimates are pegged at somewhere in the neighborhood of $117.2 million for the U.S and Canada, easily smashing the previous record of $48.5 million set in 2015 for Hotel Transylvania 2‘s in 2015.

Such a showing has many in the industry cheerfully forecasting that turnout could be just enough to save what to date has been a dismal summer movie season.

The Warner Bros. and New Line production also rang up the second-best opening for an R-rated movie (behind Deadpool‘s $132.4 million).

“We blew past everyone’s expectations in a big way,” said Warner Bros. president domestic theatrical distribution Jeffrey Goldstein, adding ticket sales were particularly strong in the Hispanic markets. “This is the first Sunday of football and because of the weather, I think our number is more in the ballpark but we have lots of room to grow.”

Going into the weekend, It was bolstered by strong reviews, which included a more than respectable B- plus score from CinemaScore.

The film starring Finn Wolfhard, Sophia Lillis, Jaeden Lieberher, Jack Dylan Grazer, Chosen Jacobs, Wyatt Oleff, and Jeremy Ray Taylor is an adaption of a 1986 King novel where the plot centers around “a group of unpopular kids in small-town Maine who are forced to confront their greatest fears when an evil presence starts preying on local children.”

Bill Skarsgard plays Pennywise, the demonic clown manifested by It.

Deadline reports It also enjoyed the best opening day ever for a horror title ($51M), the highest pre-show for a horror film, one in Sept. and for an R-rated movie ($13.5M) and the best September opening for any genre.

Here is the Top 10 for the week:

  1. It — $117.2 million
    2. Home Again — $9 million
    3. The Hitman’s Bodyguard — $4.9 million
    4. Annabelle: Creation — $4 million
    5. Wind River — $3.2 million
    6. Leap! — $2.5 million
    7. Spider-Man: Homecoming — $2 million
    8. Dunkirk — $2 million
    9. Logan Lucky — $1.8 million
    10. The Emoji Movie — $1.1 million

[Featured Image by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images]