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Annabelle safely behind the glass, where she should stay

Annabelle has come home; not only to the home of Ed and Lorraine Warren, where she will proceed to unleash all kinds of horrors, but also to theaters with the release of Annabelle Comes Home. The latest film in The Conjuring Universe is officially a Wednesday release, but got a head start on its 5-day opening weekend with preview screenings on Tuesday night, where it scared up a solid sum.

Annabelle Comes Home made $3.5 million at the box office in its opening night, according to Deadline. That is one of the better debuts for a Conjuring Universe movie, surpassing both of the main Conjuring films, with The Conjuring making $3.3 million and The Conjuring 2 making $3.4 million. The $3.5 million start is also better than the first Annabelle’s $2.1 million and The Curse of La Llorona’s $2.8 million from earlier this year.

This debut does not, however, best Annabelle: Creation, which opened to $4 million in 2017 or The Conjuring Universe’s biggest hit, last year’s The Nun, which made $5.4 million on opening night. Annabelle Comes Home will be playing in 3,525 theaters today and tomorrow before expanding a bit wider to 3,587 on Friday as it heads towards a projected 5-day weekend haul between $30-$35 million.

That would be right around the $31.2 million that The First Purge, another entry in an established horror franchise, made when it opened around this frame last year. An opening weekend between $30-$35 million would be below a bit below the $40 million the long-range tracking indicated a couple of months ago and it would also be one of the lowest openings for a Conjuring Universe movie.

Annabelle and Annabelle: Creation opened to $37.1 million and $35 million, respectively, with The Curse of La Llorona having the lowest Conjuring Universe opening with $26.3 million. Of course, those were all 3-day numbers. So a $30-$35 million opening would be on the lower end of the offerings of this universe, but would still be in line with how we expect an Annabelle film to perform.

Plus, like most modern horror, these movies are cheap to make, with the previous two Annabelle movies costing $6.5 and $15 million, respectively. So Annabelle Comes Home doesn’t need to set box office records for an opening weekend to be successful. Of course, if Annabelle Comes Home overperforms, it wouldn’t be the first film in this franchise to do so. Earlier this year The Curse of La Llorona opened to $26.3 million, nearly $10 million over the $17 million predicted.

Also, Warner Bros. and New Line probably made a smart call by making Annabelle Comes Home a Wednesday release, to give it a couple of extra days to make its money before Spider-Man: Far From Home opens on July 2 and takes over the box office.

Competition-wise, Toy Story 4 is still dominating and should stay in first place this weekend with $60-$70 million. As far as new releases are concerned, Annabelle Comes Home and Yesterday are the only two major ones, with the latter film looking at $10-$14 million opening weekend.

Negative reviews for horror films rarely seem to deter moviegoers, but for what it’s worth, Annabelle Comes Home is actually being pretty well received by critics, so perhaps that will give it an extra boost.

Annabelle Comes Home is now playing. Check out our 2019 Release Schedule to keep track of everything you can look forward to this summer.