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Paranormal Activity 4 tops US box office

Paranormal Activity 4

Story by Jack Foley

AS WIDELY predicted Paranormal Activity 4 topped the US box office chart with $30.2 million.

But perhaps more notably, it seemed to perform better internationally than it did in the States, where it lagged behind the last two films in the horror franchise.

Paranormal Activity 3 debuted to $52.6 million a year ago, prompting the decision to continue with a fourth instalment, while Paranormal Activity 2 also performed better in 2009.

But internationally, including the UK, Paranormal 4 opened 11 per cent ahead of Paranormal 3 and 25 per cent ahead of Paranormal 2 suggesting fatigue has not yet set in among European horror fans.

The figures all bode well for the next two films that the franchise has in development, as confirmed by Paramount president of domestic marketing and distibution Megan Colligan.

Paranormal Activity 5 will hit cinemas next October, while there will also be a spin-off released earlier next year targeted to Hispanics audiences and which is teased at the end of Paranormal 4.

The teaser is in Spanish, but the film will be predominately in English.

Commenting on the figures, Colligan added: “This played the way sequels often play, in terms of becoming stronger internationally. There is a lot of life left in this franchise.”

Elsewhere, the weekend saw good performances for holdover titles and poor performances from other new openers.

In the former category, Ben Affleck’s Oscar-tipped Argo held onto second spot with a record hold of $16.6 million (thereby representing a fall of only 15 per cent). The film has now taken $43.2 million in the US.

Animated hit Hotel Transylvania also continued to perform well, coming in third with a further $13.5 million for a US total of $119 million.

It edged out Liam Neeson’s Taken 2, which slipped to fourth with a further $13.4 million, to take its US figure to $106 million.

The under-performing new opener in the pack was Alex Cross, which sees Tyler Perry playing the fabled Washington detective from James Patterson’s book series. It grossed $11.8 million to place fifth.

The film is notable for seeing Matthew Fox playing a serial killer pursued by Perry.

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