Jordan Peele Just Became the First Black Writer-Director With a $100M Movie Debut

Even with big releases like “Logan” dividing moviegoers’ attention, topical horror-satire “Get Out” remains the breakout success of 2017

Over the weekend, “Get Out” director Jordan Peele quietly made history when he became the first African-American writer-director to earn $100 million with his debut movie.

In its third weekend of release, the horror-satire continued to show long legs despite strong competition from two big blockbusters, “Logan” and “Kong: Skull Island.” The film only saw a 25 percent drop off from the previous weekend to hold to an estimated $21 million, bringing its domestic cume to an estimated $111 million.

The last movie with a black director to reach the $100 million mark was F. Gary Gray’s “Straight Outta Compton” in 2015. That film — Gray’s ninth as a director — had many more resources and people involved in its making than “Get Out.” It was written by Andrea Berloff and Jonathan Herman, given a $50 million budget, and had the added appeal of being based on the rise of the legendary rap group N.W.A., with its most prominent members, Dr. Dre and Ice Cube, attached as producers.

Not only did Peele, who produced as well as wrote and directed “Get Out,” achieve the milestone with a $4 million budget and a largely unknown cast, he set a new studio record for Blumhouse in the process. “Get Out” only needed 16 days for its domestic cume to pass the nine-digit mark.

That breaks the record set by Blumhouse’s other 2017 hit, “Split,” which reached $100 million in 19 days.

Horror movies usually rely on a strong opening weekend for the majority of their box office haul, after which they hit a substantial drop-off in subsequent weeks. Not so for “Get Out.”

The Universal/Blumhouse film was expected by trackers to make $24 million in its opening weekend. Instead, “Get Out” ended up beating that projection in both its first and second weekends, posting a $34 million opening before dropping off to $28 million in week two.