You can call The Strangers the Rocky Balboa of Memorial Day. Going into one of the most hotly contested weekends of the year, the horror flick "went the distance", pulling in highly respectable numbers against the steamrolling Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (in its second week) and the highly anticipated Sex and the City opening.
Although The Strangers came in third behind both of those blockbusters (which was, of course, inevitable) it pulled in twice what the so-called pundits predicted, scoring a cool $20.7 million. Carrie Bradshaw and the rest of her henhouse ruled the roost with a boffo $55.7 million premiere, while Indy took in $46 million. With so many flocking to Sex and the City in its first weekend, and the Harrison Ford behemoth still raking in audiences, it truly is remarkable that so many people opted to see the Liv Tyler/Scott Speedman home invasion chiller.
Following the impressive numbers for Prom Night, and with M. Night Shyamalan's The Happening on the horizon, 2008 is looking to be a very good year for the horror genre, from a box office point of view. Which is encouraging, since horror is not usually the go-to genre when it comes to dollars and cents. Studios take note: there is a large audience out there for quality fright films (Prom Night notwithstanding).
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