It shatters box office records

The U.S. opening would have been bigger if not for Hurricane Irma.

The adaptation of Stephen King's 1986 novel broke several box office records as it opened to a massive $117.2 million in the USA and Canada, according to studio estimates.

The biggest box office competition on the horizon for "It" is the Michael Keaton thriller "American Assassin" opening Friday as well as "Kingsman: The Golden Circle" and "The LEGO Ninjago Movie" opening September 22. The last three weekends at the box office were so anemic that many analysts openly anxious about the future of the industry.

It has set the opening weekend record for any movie released in the USA between Labor Day and November and the biggest debut ever for a horror movie - putting Paranormal Activity in second place and The Conjuring in third.

It shatters box office records
It shatters box office records

Warner Bros. also scored the biggest horror movie debut of all-time as well as the second biggest R-rated launch ever trailing just the $132.4M of last year's Deadpool. Saturday dipped only 10% to $45.7M which is a great hold for a horror movie that generated so much business upfront with pre-shows. Hell, horror movies don't do this type of business, regardless of rating. The next closest finisher is The Hitman's Bodyguard, at just beyond 3,300 theaters. The second film, which will focus on adults, therefore seems more than certain.

The remake of the Stephen King story is also a victor with critics, sitting now at 87 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, 70 percent on Metacritic and scoring a B+ Cinemascore. For a movie that cost $35 million to make and was expected to make $75 million from the most generous predictions before this weekend, this is a huge opening for Warner Bros. Before that, there was Hotel Transylvania 2 at $48.5 million. Wonder Woman's worldwide total is now $816 million.

Coming in at fourth place for the weekend was the Warner Bros. and New Line release, Annabelle: Creation.

The movie adapts only part of the 1,000-plus page book, in which its main characters are children.

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