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Paramount’s microbudgeted Paranormal Activity 4 grossed a solid $4.5 million in Thursday night shows, putting it on course for a debut in the mid-$30 million range. The movie began rolling out at 9 p.m.
At that pace, the sequel won’t match the $52.6 million opening of Paranormal Activity 3 a year ago (that film earned $8 million in midnight runs). It still could match the $40.7 million opening of the first sequel two years ago if it overperforms.
Paranormal 4 already appears to be making up the difference overseas, where it opened ahead of the threequel in Australia and German on Thursday.
Studio insiders say there is much more competition in the domestic marketplace this October as a number of films — including holdovers Taken 2, Argo, Hotel Transylvania and last weekend’s horror offering Sinister — continue to overperform. And there’s always the possibility of franchise fatigue.
Paranormal 4 is destined to be profitable, considering it cost only $5 million to make.
The found-footage Paranormal franchise, guided by Paramount and Jason Blum‘s Blumhouse, has reaped enormous profits for all involved. The first three films, made on a combined shoestring budget of $8 million, have grossed north of $576 million worldwide.
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