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Ron Howard's Inferno bombs in US as A Madea Halloween retains top spot


Story by Jack Foley

RON Howard’s Inferno has bombed in the US and suffered the indignity of losing to one of the biggest box office upsets in US history.

The third film to be based on a Dan Brown book, after The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons, took only an estimated $15 million – well behind the $16.7 million that Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween attracted in its second weekend.

Heading into the weekend, it was widely assumed that Inferno, which boasts the star power of Tom Hanks and Felicity Jones, would comfortably open in first place. But audiences, perhaps reacting to the film’s bad reviews, stayed away.

Inferno now marks the second big budget Ron Howard film in a row to bomb, following the box office dud that was In The Heart of the Sea.

There was better news for the film internationally, however, where the Da Vinci Code series has traditionally fared better anyway. It has already earned an estimated $150 million since launching earlier this month, while China, where it opened this weekend, saw Inferno take the top spot with a very healthy $14 million.

Sony worldwide president of marketing and distribution Josh Greenstein commented: “We’re disappointed in the US opening, but we’re very pleased with how the film is performing internationally.”

Overall, the picture wasn’t pretty for cinemas in the US this weekend. But then there were also a lot of distractions, including Halloween [a massive holiday], the World Series and the final days of the US election.

It left holdover titles to battle it out for the remaining top five spots, with Tom Cruise’s Tom Cruise’s Jack Reacher: Never Go Back clinging to third.

Ben Affleck’s The Accountant and Universal and Blumhouse Productions’ prequel horror title Ouija: Origin of Evil took fourth and fifth.

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