Weekend Box Office: 'Halloween' Eyes Another $80M October Record

Halloween Still 1 - TIFF Publicity - H 2018
Courtesy of TIFF
Forty years later, Jamie Lee Curtis reprises her role as the iconic Laurie Strode, who once again faces off with Michael Myers.

Blumhouse and Universal's Halloween did terrifying at the Friday box office, earning $33.3 million from 3,928 theaters for a weekend gross of $80.3 million, tying with Venom's launch earlier this month for an October best.

To boot, the pic — a direct sequel to the 1978 classic slasher hit — is scoring the second-best opening of all time for an R-rated horror pic behind New Line's blockbuster It, which opened to $123.4 million in September 2017, not adjusted for inflation. In addition to stellar reviews, Halloween nabbed a B+ CinemaScore, a good grade for the genre.

Directed by David Gordon Green, Halloween sees the return of Jamie Lee Curtis as the iconic character Laurie Strode, who once again faces off with Michael Myers, the masked figure who has haunted her since she narrowly escaped his killing spree on Halloween night in 1978. (Nick Castle reprises his role as Myers.) After Blumhouse landed rights to the Halloween franchise, Jason Blum tapped horror icon John Carpenter, who directed the 1978 film, to serve as creative consultant.

October box office revenue is running at record levels thanks to Sony's Venom and Warner Bros.' A Star Is Born, both of are still impressing in their third weekends.

A Star Is Born is tipped to narrowly beat Venom for the weekend with $19 million, putting its domestic total at around $126 million through Sunday.  Venom looks to score another $18 million-plus for a domestic haul north of $171 million by the time the weekend wraps.

The forecast for First Man in its sophomore outing looks muted. Damien Chazelle's astronaut drama is on course to gross $8.8 million, enough for a fifth-place finish behind holdover Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween.

Universal and Blumhouse's Halloween isn't the only new nationwide release this weekend. (Miramax is a partner on the film).

With awards season in full swing, Fox 2000 is expanding its YA police-shooting drama The Hate U Give into roughly 2,300 theaters. The film — earning a coveted A+ CinemaScore — could is on course to gross a strong $8.5 million to place No. 6.

New entries at the specialty box office include Can You Ever Forgive Me? starring Melissa McCarthy, IFC's Wildlife, Bleecker Street's What They Had and A24's Mid90s.

Oct. 19, 12:30 p.m. Updated with revised weekend estimates.
Oct. 20, 7:30 a.m. Updated with revised weekend estimates.