Horror flops at the box office; Let Me In, Hatchet and Case 39 all tank

It looked like something potentially special. The first weekend of October and four new horror releases - among them a much-ballyhooed unrated release and a critically acclaimed remake - meant a lot of choices for genre fans... At least one film would emerge being a feel-good story, right?

Wrong. Perhaps thanks to overwhelming interest in David Fincher's SOCIAL NETWORK or - more likely - just simply a lack of interest in the products dished out, this weekend in theatrical scares was something to forget for all involved.

Let's break it down: The "best" of the horror openers is CASE 39. Let that sink in. This flick, which has literally sat on the shelf for years and was just awarded a release date with little-to-no marketing push behind it came out on top with $5.3 million, putting it in seventh place overall.

When the final numbers come in it might turn out that LET ME IN has made more than CASE 39, as the remake's estimated take is $5 million, but let's face it, this is embarrassing for the Matt Reeves film, which was looking to capitalize on the great reviews and tremendous festival buzz that it had been building up to this weekend. While it only opened in 2,020 theaters, I'm pretty shocked at the lack of interest.

Up next you've got CHAIN LETTER, which, not unlike CASE 39, most people probably didn't even realize was coming out this weekend. The slasher made $143,000 from 406 theaters, bad for a pretty crummy $352 per screen average. 'Nuff said.

Finally, we have HATCHET II, which landed on its face with a $62,000 take from 68 theaters. Not a wide release, of course, but still rather meager for a film that had high hopes of making a dent with its unrated tag and distribution in AMC theaters... The problem might have been that not enough people know the HATCHET franchise, hence HATCHET II was met with confusion by the general populous. I'm sure the horror hounds went out and supported it, but it's obvious that that's just not going to cut it when you hit the big leagues.

Actually, I take back what I said earlier. CASE 39 should be considered the feel-good story, because it has the least business being dubbed so.

Chain Letter's Nikki Reed

Extra Tidbit: So... what's your take on the horror box office fiasco?
Source: Box Office Mojo



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