Box Office update: Clowns trump strippers as 'It: Chapter 2' beats Jennifer Lopez-starrer 'Hustlers' to the top
As expected, 'It: Chapter 2' is proving to be a success, critically and commercially. The horror film is a sequel to the 2017 hit, 'It' based on the 1986 novel by Stephen King. The movie hit cinemas on September 6 and is currently placed at the top of the box office. 'It: Chapter 2' has collected $323.3 million worldwide. Between its predecessor and this year's follow-up, both directed by Andy Muschietti, the horror flicks have crossed the $1 billion benchmark at the global box office.
The sequel stars Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, Bill Hader, and Isaiah Mustafa, while Bill Skarsgard returned to portray the terrifying demonic clown known as Pennywise. According to industry sources, 'It: Chapter Two' opened this weekend in France with $4.7 million. Among holdovers, the movie had a solid outing in Germany with $4.2 million, the United Kingdom with $3.9 million and Mexico with $3.3 million.
Just a rung below 'It: Chapter 2' is STX’s 'Hustlers', The R-Rated drama is based on Jessica Pressler’s 2015 'New York magazine' article about a group of strippers who turn the tables on their wealthy Wall Street clientele after the 2008 recession hits. Jennifer Lopez, Constance Wu, Lili Reinhart, and Keke Palmer round up the cast. The crime drama has its world premiere on September 7, 2019, and started off with a healthy $33.2 million in North America for a global start of $37.69 million. (Note: 'It: Chapter 2' and 'Hustlers' are still running fresh and the two-week numbers are accounted for)
According to Box Office Mojo, 'Hustlers' opened internationally in 15 markets with $4.46 mn. Openings included the UK where the film opened to #3 with an estimated $1.7 mn followed by a $1.2 mn debut in Russia. Filling up the remaining three of the top five are, Lionsgate's 'Angel Has Fallen' at $60 mn, Universal's 'Good Boys' at $73 mn and 'Lion King' that now totals $1.6 bn.
It doesn't come as a surprise that Pennywise is drawing the crowds. The movie boasts a healthy 62% on Rotten Tomatoes with an audience score of 79%. PostTrak gave it an overall positive score of 76% and a 56% "definite recommend". The movie received praise for its acting and themes, though criticism was aimed at the runtime and weaker scares compared to its predecessor. Its faithfulness to the novel also garnered a positive response. 'Variety's Peter DeBruge wrote, "The clown is back, and the kids have grown up in part two of Stephen King's monster novel, which inspires an overlong, but suitably scary sequel".
Simply put, the movie ticked all boxes that a sequel and a book-to-film adaptation should.
Impressive plot. Check. Cast performances. Check. Continuity factor and accuracy to the source material. Check. Not so surprising now, is it?
Japan is the last key market where 'It: Chapter 2' is yet to release where it will open on November 1.