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‘Scream VI’ Slashes Box Office With $43 Million Opening

Ghostface’s visit to New York sets a new franchise opening weekend record before inflation adjustment

Paramount is back on the hot streak it had for much of 2022 with Spyglass’ “Scream VI,” which is performing just above pre-release projections with a $19.3 million opening day and an estimated $43.5 million opening from 3,675 screens.

Heading into the weekend, the sixth installment of the late Wes Craven’s meta-horror franchise was projected for a $37-40 million launch, beating the $30 million opening of last year’s “Scream.” This result also beats the franchise opening record of $34.7 million set by “Scream 3,” though that threequel, which was released in 2000, still holds the record after inflation adjustment.

Reception for “Scream VI” has been generally positive with a B+ on CinemaScore — a solid grade on the audience poll system for horror films — to go with Rotten Tomatoes scores of 76% critics and 94% audience. While “Scream VI” will have to contend with upcoming sequels to “Shazam!” and “John Wick” for general audience attention, it has a strong chance of carving a niche for itself as a well-received horror film.

In similar fashion, MGM’s “Creed III” has found its own lane at the box office, earning a decent hold of $26.7 million in its second weekend for a 55% drop from its $58.3 million opening weekend. Sometime in the coming week, “Creed III” will have eclipsed the $115 million domestic run of its 2018 predecessor “Creed II.” MGM is now estimating a final domestic total of $150 million for “Creed III,” which would put it among the studio’s top 10 highest-grossing films of all time before inflation adjustment.

While those sequels are hitting their stride at the box office, Sony/Columbia’s sci-fi thriller “65” is struggling with an estimated $10 million opening from 3,405 theaters. With a 36% critics Rotten Tomatoes score and a poor C+ grade on CinemaScore, “65” will have a hard time making back its $45 million budget, though the financial hit on Sony will be lessened as that budget was co-financed by Bron and TSG.

The other new release this weekend that is opening outside the Top 5 is Focus Features’ “Champions,” an inspirational sports film that is estimated for a $5 million opening from 3,030 theaters. Starring Woody Harrelson, the film got mixed reviews with a 53% RT score but has won over older audiences with an A on CinemaScore.