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Happy Death Day lands US top spot to mark another win for horror

Happy Death Day

Story by Jack Foley

HORROR movie Happy Death Day has shot straight to the top of the US box office with a strong $26.5 million to mark another win for the resurgent horror genre.

The micro-budgeted thriller, directed by Christopher Landon, stars Jessica Rothe as a college student who relives the day of her murder over and over until she discovers her killer’s identity. It’s been dubbed a Groundhog Day-style horror.

Incredibly, it cost a mere $5 million to produce, and follows the success of Universal and Blumhouse’s 2017 titles, Get Out and Split.

And in a further blow to more costly Hollywood blockbusters, Happy Death Day trounced holdover Blade Runner 2049, which declined a steep 54% to $15.1 million in its second weekend for an early US total of $60.6 million, against the $150 million it cost to produce.

Jackie Chan starring action-thriller The Foreigner placed third with $12.8 million to mark a solid start for a film that also cost a reported $35 million to make and has already earned more than $88 million internationally.

Directed by James Bond veteran Martin Campbell, The Foreigner finds martial arts legend Chan playing a former military operative who comes out of retirement when his teenage daughter is killed in a politically-motivated terrorist attack.

He’s forced into a cat-and-mouse conflict with a British government official (ex-007 Pierce Brosnan), whose own past may hold clues to the identities of the elusive killers.

Another horror success, the Stephen King blockbuster adaptation of IT came in fourth with $6.1 million, while The Mountain Between Us, starring Idris Elba and Kate Winslet, rounded out the five, with $5.7 million for a US total of $20.5 million.

Overall, horror has enjoyed one of its best years in recent memory, thanks to the gargantuan success of IT, now the highest grossing horror title of all-time, and lower budget successes such as Get Out, Split and now Happy Death Day.

In another victory for the genre, Annabelle: Creation crossed the $300 million mark at the global box office.

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