IT: Chapter Two barely was able to fend-off the stripper flick Hustlers to hold the top spot over the weekend earning $39.6 million (weekend actuals).
Chapter Two has now earned $322 million globally and while is slightly behind where the original was at this point, is still doing quite well.
The two movies combined (IT earned $700 million total) have now grossed an impressive $1.022 billion at the worldwide box office, which is a huge success for New Line Cinema/Warner Bros. given the films’ modest production budgets (original cost $35 million to make).
It’ll be interesting to see if we’ll see how other New Line Cinema/Warner Bros. Stephen King adaptations will fare at the box office in the wake of the two IT installments.
The next big release will be Ewan McGregor’s Doctor Sleep (a sequel to The Shining), that will arrive on November 8th.
Current tracking suggests a domestic opening between $20-30 million, that might not scream massive success but still could lead to a solid profit if the film does well overseas.
Still irrevocably scarred by the trauma he endured as a child at the Overlook, Dan Torrance has fought to find some semblance of peace. But that peace is shattered when he encounters Abra, a courageous teenager with her own powerful extrasensory gift, known as the “shine.” Instinctively recognizing that Dan shares her power, Abra has sought him out, desperate for his help against the merciless Rose the Hat and her followers, The True Knot, who feed off the shine of innocents in their quest for immortality. Forming an unlikely alliance, Dan and Abra engage in a brutal life-or-death battle with Rose. Abra’s innocence and fearless embrace of her shine compel Dan to call upon his own powers as never before—at once facing his fears and reawakening the ghosts of the past.
There are other Stephen King adaptations in development stages at New Line Cinema that have plenty of potential to make the studio a decent amount of money as well.
The first is an adaptation of King’s dystopian novel The Long Walk with a script from James Vanderbilt (Zodiac) and has André Øvredal (Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark) attached to direct.
Originally published by King under the pseudonym Richard Bachman in 1979, The Long Walk takes place in the future in which 100 teenage boys embark on an annual competition known as “The Long Walk.” The rules are simple: maintain a speed above 4 miles per hour. Receive three warnings in an hour and you’re shot dead. The last one walking gets whatever he wants for the rest of his life. Under these grim circumstances, the boys develop deep friendships despite knowing that each of their friends’ survival is a threat to their own.
The Long Walk allows for a younger cast to step in the mature movie, which seemingly was a big audience draw for the original IT.
We currently don’t have a production start date or release date for The Long Walk.
The second is a new version of Salem’s Lot, a vampire story set in a small town with James Wan producing and screenwriter Gary Dauberman (IT, IT: Chapter Two) writing the script.
Published in 1975, King’s book centers on an author who returns to his hometown in order to write about an abandoned mansion in the small town. As he discovers the home has been bought by a mysterious man from Europe, the man also realizes that townspeople are slowly being turned into vampires. The writer bands together with a ragtag group to stop the spread of vampires, with the final confrontation happening in the house with the mysterious man.
The project is currently without a director which would suggest that it likely won’t be filming anytime soon.
James Wan is likely going to be too busy with Silvercup (his Hard-R Giallo horror movie shooting this fall) and the Aquaman sequel. However, writer Gary Dauberman recently made his directorial debut with Annabelle Comes Home and could be given the directing gig on Salem’s Lot.
Vertigo Entertainment, who were behind the IT movies and Doctor Sleep are also looking to adapt a feature film based on King’s novel Tommyknockers along with James Wan’s production company Atomic Monster.
Universal Pictures reportedly won a bidding war over Tommyknockers in the spring of 2018, however, nothing really concrete has come of the deal so far.
It’s possible if the development deal expires they might be able to shop it around again, and considering WB’s working relationship with Atomic Monster and Vertigo Entertainment they could find a home there.
The book was published in 1987 and is set in a town in Maine that falls under the influence of a dangerous gas from an unearthed spacecraft. The gas begins to transform residents, giving them enhanced abilities, but also making them violent.
Neither a screenwriter or director were named in the original reports.
The original version of Tommyknockers was a miniseries that aired in 1993, there is a chance that the studio could attempt split the project into two installments.
I’m slightly curious if we’ll see more King remakes picked-up by WB in the near future.